Yes Ted Cruz Is Eligible To Be President

Contra Ace and Ann Coulter, it’s actually not that complicated.

Yes, Cruz’s story is a little unique but it’s not even remotely complex.

Let’s go to the actual law according to the Customs and Immigration Service

One parent is a U.S. citizen at the time of birth and the birthdate is before November 14, 1986 but after October 10, 1952 The parents are married at the time of birth and the U.S. citizen parent was physically present in the U.S. or its territories for a period of at least ten years at some time in his or her life prior to the birth, at least five of which were after his or her 14thbirthday.If the U.S. citizen parent spent time abroad in any of the following three capacities, this can also be counted towards the physical presence requirement:

  • Serving honorably in the U.S. Armed Forces;
  • Employed with the U.S. Government; or
  • Employed with certain international organizations.

Additionally, time spent abroad by the U.S. citizen parent while the U.S. citizen parent was the unmarried son or daughter and a member of the household of a person who meets any of the three conditions listed above can also be counted.

If the child was born out of wedlock, see N-600: FAQ.

Cruz was born on December 22, 1970 so that’s the part of the law that applies to his case.

Cruz’s mother was born in Delaware and grew up in the US. That covers the 10 years. She graduated from Rice University in Texas, so that would cover the 5 years after age 14 requirement. She didn’t move to Canada until the 60s so she spent more time than that in the US.

Cruz  acquired his citizenship, at birth, through his mother. He is a natural born US citizen and eligible to be President of the United States.

Let us never have to speak of this again.

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About Drew

I blog about politics and hockey because I sort of understand those things. I'd blog about women but I'll never understand them.

Posted on August 13, 2013, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 46 Comments.

  1. Keating Willcox

    Drew I noticed on Wikipedia a list of all the different state requirements for someone to be on each state ballot. Is there any mischief possible from that?

  2. No.

    In U.S. Term Limits, Inc. v. Thornton the Supreme Court ruled that state imposed term limits on House and Senate seats were unconstitutional. The reasoning is the qualifications for federal offices are in the Constitution and states can’t add or subtract from them. That logic would apply to the presidency as well.

    There are difference from state to state on what it takes to get on a primary ballot but that’s just a numbers thing, not an additional qualification to what’s listed in the Constitution.

  3. Zombie John Gotti

    But…but…but…Global warming!

  4. So, since they’ve specified a date range for eligibility, I take it if you’re born outside of that time frame you’re not eligible? I’m asking about myself here; not that I’d ever consider it but I’d still like to know. Anyone who seriously doubts Cruz’s eligibility needs a facial redecoration.

  5. As a Canadian, I will take a great deal of pride in a US president who was born in Canada. The moonbat contingent will probably hate it, but won’t that be fun?

  6. Re: Stark’s question, that date range isn’t “if you’re outside this date range you’re ineligible.” Rather, the date range is “if you’re outside this date range, then a different law applies to you.” Drew only quoted the date range that applies to Ted Cruz, because that’s the only relevant one for the subject he wanted to talk about. If you click through to the USCIS site that Drew linked, you’ll see the law for children born on or after November 14, 1986. (It’s not immediately obvious where to find the law for children born before October 10, 1952, though.)

  7. Legal pron. Short and sweet. Thanks, Drew.

  8. Reblogged this on Dak's Bays and commented:
    Time to start a Ted Cruz for President, 2016 campaign

  9. Cruz may indeed be eligible but the common perception is that he is not because he wasn’t born in the United States. His candidacy for president will never get beyond this discussion.

  10. “His candidacy for president will never get beyond this discussion.”

    That’s only true if we allow idiots to control the discussion That’s what Drew is trying to forestall. As in, from now on when anyone says Cruz isn’t eligible, the only answer given should be “shut up, idiot.”

  11. Well it’s not that complicated if you don’t address the question.

    You provided a good definition of citizenship, which has not been questioned … He is eligible to be a senator … But the presidency has a bigger requirement that the constitution does not define … A natural born citizen. Which may require both parents to be citizens.

    I predict that the democrats would claim ineligibility and finally admit that obama’s real daddy is Frank Marshal Davis, and therefore he had two citizen parents, and is natural born, though of the variety that used to be considered bastard … With parents not in a state of wedlock.

  12. everlastingphelps

    It’s even simpler than that. The SCOTUS has ruled that no one has standing to challenge a presidential candidate’s eligibility. That means that the parties can run whoever they want, regardless of their provenience.

  13. I’m a big fan of Drew and I think Cruz would make an outstanding president, but Drew’s link on the issue only explains citizenship, not the natural born citizenship requirement for president. He skips the divided loyalties issue entirely. The founders intended the two citizen parents rule as a way to avoid divided loyalties by the Commander in Chief.

  14. That’s funny Drew, I don’t see the words “natural born citizen” mentioned once in the quotes you provided from the USCIS definitions.

    Article 2, Section 1, Paragraph 5 of the USC states that ONLY a natural born citizen can be POTUS or VPOTUS of the US.

    It also states that a CITIZEN can be a member of Congress, but not POTUS, since POTUS requires a “natural born citizen.”

    Why do you suppose the founders differentiated between a citizen as a congressman vs. a natural born citizen as a POTUS?

  15. If Ted Cruz is eligible to be POTUS, then British Prime Minister Winston Churchill could have also been POTUS since he had an American mother.

    Pretty cool. He gets to pick whether he could rule either Britain OR America.

  16. Rex the Wonder God

    To “everlastingphelps”:

    1. You misunderstand. The SCOTUS said it’s a matter for CONGRESS, exclusively.

    2. Your comment may be outside the province of those who would mis-spell “provenance”.

  17. pssst………Cruz is a citizen of the US but he is not a ‘natural born citizen’. A ‘natural born citizen’ is one who is born of two American citizen parents on US soil.

  18. Rex the Wonder God

    To snubar:

    Problem 1: British prime ministers don’t “rule” anything; they advise the reigning queen or king on the will of Parliament.

    Problem 2: American presidents don’t “rule” anything; they preside over the administration of the national government subject to limits set by and the good will of Congress.

    Problem 3: If a U.S. citizen, whether native born, natural born or naturalized, marries a citizen of another country and gives up U.S. citizenship to take up citizenship in that other country, thereafter children born to that person cannot be “natural born” U.S. citizens.

    Problem 4: Women’s suffrage in Britain, including the right to vote, didn’t start happening for another 44 years after Winston was born, and didn’t extend to women under 30 for another 10 years after that. The route to women’s suffrage in the U.S. was even more circuitous, but in any event wasn’t settled until August 18, 1920, with ratification of the 19th Amendment – almost 46 years after Winston was born.

    I’m not saying either problem was necessarily insuperable, but I think both would have been proved insuperable for the purpose you imagine. Also, Winston was unique in being the first-ever “honorary” U.S. citizen, but that’s different from even “naturalized” – but even that didn’t happen until 1963,

    Solution: If Winston had suddenly decided, WWII won and his party turfed from leading Parliament, Hey, I got time on my hands; think I’ll head over to the colonies, renounce my Britizenship, and then run for POTUS in 1948 — and then ran and won enough electoral college votes, it’d have been entirely up to the 80th Congress to decide if he could preside.

  19. Some people are wondering if Cruz is a natural born citizen. Our constitution doesn’t specifically define “natural born citizen” but is framed in English common law in effect at the time, and under English common law the term “natural born citizen” is understood to be a citizen at birth.

  20. There is a difference between being a natural born citizen and the Customs-immigration requirements, as any real lawyer would tell you.. Actually the long time he was raised in Canada, with only one parent being a US citizen, is suspect. The naturalized requirement ought to be both parents being birthed US citizens and Ted raised predominately in the US.

  21. Rex:

    Answer 1: I was using the term “rule” loosely. No need to mince words.

    Answer 2: Tell that to Obama, who sidesteps Congress via executive order every time they say “no”.

    Answer 3: Ted Cruz was born in Alberta, Canada, to a Cuban father and an American mother. You would think that the citizenship of the son follows the citizenship of his father (Cuba) if born outside the US. Cruz is not a jus soli or jus sanguinis citizen since he was born in Canada to a Cuban father.

    But if you want to argue that he is “natural born” due to his American mother, then so was Churchill. Neither Churchill nor Cruz were born on American soil, both had non – American fathers, and both had American born mothers.

    Answer 4: Natural born citizenship is not derived from the laws of man (statute) but rather by the laws of nature. A natural born American citizen as defined during the founding of America meant born on American soil to American citizen parents.

    If you are saying that only suffrage gave American women citizenship status, why would the founders have considered an American born woman a “citizen”, who when married to an American citizen man, gives birth to a child on American soil, and the child would be considered a “natural born citizen?”

    I’m just being as free and loose with the definitions as everyone else has become, so if Cruz can be POTUS, so could have Churchill.

  22. Actually Kimberly,

    The founders were not only intimately familiar with British Common Law, but The Laws of Nature, which was a prominent school of thought at the time.

    According to the Laws of Nature, as outlined by Swiss philosopher, diplomat, and legal expert Emmerich de Vattel, the common understanding at the time of the founding of America of “natural born citizen” was born on the soil of parents who are citizens of the soil.

    As in born on American soil to American citizen parents. It is not a statute. It is natural law.

    Cruz fails.

  23. Wayne: It is YOUR opinion that “A ‘natural born citizen’ is one who is born of two American citizen parents on US soil.” The Supreme Court has never said that for purposes of becoming president, a person must be born of two American citizen parents on US soil. Chester A. Arthur’s father was not a U.S. citizen when Chester was born, nor, of course, was Barack Obama’s father when Barack was born.

  24. Diogenes' Lamp

    Pretty soon EVERYONE will be a Natural born citizen. The rule that most uninformed people (and I mean the ENTIRE LEGAL SYSTEM) seem to want is not both parents and soil, but either soil, or any trace of a parent.

    Rather than use the most strict guidelines, they prefer to assert the most Liberal.

    That Ted Cruz owes his citizenship to a naturalization statute simply won’t make a dent in these people’s firm misunderstanding of the topic.

    That none of these unnatural citizens serve the purpose for which Article II was created, (to exclude foreign influence from the executive branch of governance) is another fact that doesn’t make a dent in what people strongly wish to believe.

  25. Diogenes' Lamp

    Drew Wrote:
    “In U.S. Term Limits, Inc. v. Thornton the Supreme Court ruled that state imposed term limits on House and Senate seats were unconstitutional. The reasoning is the qualifications for federal offices are in the Constitution and states can’t add or subtract from them. That logic would apply to the presidency as well. “

    Nor can Congress add or subtract from the meaning of the term “natural born citizen” by subsequent statute. Modifying the original meaning of the term is just as much of a No no for them as it is for the States. .

    They can “naturalize” people, but they cannot MAKE them natural.
    Congress can Adopt. They can’t produce actual family members. (Not through legislation anyway.)

  26. WOW just what I was searching for. Came here by searching for purpose of
    existence

  27. Reblogged this on Cmblake6's Weblog and commented:
    This too was in the comments referenced at BMEWS. Indeed, this is easily as dead nuts on as wardmama4’s comment I loaded last post.

  28. Drew, put down the pipe and step away from the computer. Your ignoranc here is sad. Remember, research is your friend. Just for starters, check out what’s available at the Library of Congress THOMAS on eligibility. And, btw, never ever ever source Ann Coulter as an authority again. Got it?

  29. Drew, what about the historical definition that to be a “natural born citizen” (NBC) both of your parents have to be citizens at the time of your birth? This is the definition the founders would have relied on. Cruz was born a citizen of the United States, he was not born a natural born citizen.

    Obama not NBC.
    Rubio not NBC.
    Jindal not NBC.
    Cruz not NBC.

  30. You are wrong, Mr. Drew. A “NATURAL BORN CITIZEN” is different from a “citizen”. A NBC must have TWO citizen parents and be born on U.S. soil (or U.S. territory, embassies, military bases). Minor v. Happersett is the SCOTUS unanimous decision defining NBC. Cruz is NOT an NBC. Neither is Little Barry the Illegitimate Usurper. Neither is Bobby Jindal, and neither is Marco Rubio.

    You smug maroons who think you know it all know nothing. So shut up!

  31. I’m a big supporter of Ted Cruz but I have a problem regarding his eligibility. All the research I have done the past 4 years indicates that he does not satisfy the requirements of a “natural born citizen”. Believe it or not the Supreme Court HAS defined this term within 4 cases. Please read this articles and post your comments for I’m always open to discovering possible misinterpretations of what I’ve been reading.

    http://www.fourwinds10.net/siterun_data/government/us_constitution/news.php?q=1308252582

  32. Minor v. Happersett is the SCOTUS unanimous decision defining NBC.

    I think that is a misreading of Minor, finding a precedent where none was set. The court ruled that because Minor was born in the US of two citizens, there could be no doubt that she fit the definition of a NBC. The ruling in no way limited the definition of NBC.

    Under the power to adopt a uniform system of naturalization, Congress, as early as 1790, provided “that any alien, being a free white person,” might be admitted as a citizen of the United States, and that the children of such persons so naturalized, dwelling within the United States, being under twenty-one years of age at the time of such naturalization, should also be considered citizens of the United States, and that the children of citizens of the United States that might be born beyond the sea, or out of the limits of the United States, should be considered as natural-born citizens.

    The two takeaways from that is: 1) children born overseas to US citizen parents are NBC, and 2) Congress decides who is a NBC (as long as they don’t do it ex post facto.)

  33. “I think that is a misreading of Minor, finding a precedent where none was set”
    No, not a misreading at all. The Minor decision was six years after the passage of the 14th amendment, so it must be taken into context. What the Minor court said was that there was no need to expand on the definition of natural born citizen because Virginia Minor WAS a natural born citizen since she was a born in the country to parents who were citizens. Therefore, by establishing her citizenship to be natural born citizenship, the court could address her sufferage issue. In Elk v Wilkins, John Elk was refused the right to vote since Elk was born on US soil, but on an Indian reservation. The court ruled that, since Indian reservations were governed through treaty witht the US government, Elk’s first allegiance was to his tribe, even though he was born in the US. Since his allegiance was not “direct and immediate” to the United States, he is not a citizen of the United States. Since Cruz is a citizen of Canada by birth and Cuba, through his father, it’s tough to believe his allegiance “at birth” was direct and immediate to the United States.

  34. In Elk v Wilkins, John Elk was refused the right to vote since Elk was born on US soil, but on an Indian reservation. The court ruled that, since Indian reservations were governed through treaty witht the US government, Elk’s first allegiance was to his tribe, even though he was born in the US.

    That’s not what the court found. The court found that Elk was not a citizen because his parents were not citizens — they were Indians, and Indians did not historically enjoy citizenship. As the court in Elk stated:

    It is also worthy of remark that the language used about the same time by the very Congress which framed the Fourteenth Amendment, in the first section of the Civil Rights Act of April 9, 1866, declaring who shall be citizens of the United States, is “all persons born in the United States, and not subject to any foreign power, excluding Indians not taxed.” 14 Stat. 27; Rev.Stat. § 1992.

    Such Indians, then, not being citizens by birth, can only become citizens in the second way mentioned in the Fourteenth Amendment, by being “naturalized in the United States,” by or under some treaty or statute.

    Again, by making this argument, you are explicitly ignoring Minor, which stated explicitly (quoted above) that children of citizens born abroad are still natural born citizens.


  35. “In his case, federal law clearly defined whether he would be a US Citizen at birth.”

    STOP RIGHT THERE! You needn’t read any further…Sen Cruz isn’t a Art. II, §1, cl. 4 natural born citizen if you have to quote positive law to make him a US Citizen at birth. If someone it make a US citizen at birth by positive law, that person isn’t a “natural” US Citizen by birth, but a naturalized US Citizen at birth.

    ex animo
    davidfarrar

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