As of March 23, 2015, the first (serious) politician has announced his candidacy for President. Ted Cruz is a Republican, born in Canada, to an American mother and a father who held Cuban citizenship. I hope that the birthers have a field day here. It seems as though well-known birther Donald Trump has already put in his two cents about that topic. In an interview with MyFoxNY, Trump says,
“Well he’s got, you know, a hurdle that nobody else seems to have at this moment,” said Trump, who was born in Queens. “It’s a hurdle and somebody could certainly look at it very seriously. He was born in Canada … if you know … and when we all studied our history lessons … you’re supposed to be born in this country, so I just don’t know how the courts would rule on it. But it’s an additional hurdle that he has that no one else seems to have.”
The truth is that most legal scholars agree that the term “natural-born citizen” means anyone who is entitled citizenship at birth. If you are born to American parents overseas you are entitled to US citizenship at birth and that makes you a natural-born citizen. Paul D. Clement, former solicitor general for President George W. Bush, and Neal Katyal, former acting solicitor general for President Obama, wrote a piece for the Harvard Law Review, and in that piece they stated that “the actions and understandings of the First Congress are particularly persuasive because so many of the Framers of the Constitution were also members of the First Congress,” Katyal and Clement wrote. “That is particularly true in this instance, as eight of the eleven members of the committee that proposed the natural-born eligibility requirement to the Convention served in the First Congress and none objected to a definition of “natural born Citizen” that included persons born abroad to citizen parents.”
So citizenship is established. Now let’s get to the nitty-gritty. What does Cruz believe? Cruz is a social conservative who hopes to align himself with evangelical Christians. He rose to prominence within the Tea Party movement, and gained notoriety during the government shut down. He is far from a centrist and I am very curious, as the months roll on, who will come out to challenge him.
Elections are won when the most number of people vote for you. We have seen in recent elections that the Republican party is split, between the Republicans who want their money protected and are a bit more conservative, and the evangelical religious Republicans. So far, I don’t see Cruz appealing to both sides. As the months and weeks pass on, I look forward to more information on him, but it’s exciting to know election season has started, just as Game of Thrones is about to begin.