CNN has an article out about Ted Cruz being born in Canada and his eligibility to be President. The issue is the legal definition of “natural born citizen” and the Congressional Research Service pretty much states he should be eligible since his mother was born in Delaware. Naturally there is a lot of irony that the current conservative favorite for the presidential nomination three years hence has a very similar issue as our current president. There are still a lot of birthers out there and despite the fact that it was such a joke for the ’08 and ’12 campaigns I fully expect it to continue to come up. However this time while the joke was the birthers bringing it up in the first place, the joke this time will be throwing it back in their faces.
Obama’s and Cruz’s mothers where both undeniably natural born U.S. citizens. Obama’s father was from Kenya, a country we have a long history of cooperation and friendly relations with. Cruz’s father is from Cuba, a country we have a long antagonistic relationship with. There is another minor difference: Obama actually has a U.S. stamped birth certificate whereas Cruz’s is stamped Canadian. The Donald has already weighed in that the door is possibly open to challenging his eligibility, although much less forcefully than he ever was with Obama. He may be pondering another run at the presidency, a joke that will far outstrip another birther controversy in it’s hilarity.
But is there any doubt that Cruz and Obama are American? They grew up, went to school, plied their trades and raised their families alongside the rest of us. They have both been elected to public office by their constituents. We need to be honest with ourselves at this point. There are things in the constitution, a rightfully venerated document for American’s and others, that were simply a product of it’s time. Slavery is the most obvious part that has been removed as we have grown as a nation. It was always intended to be a living document with the capacity to be changed. The problem today is that nothing can get done because of the partisanship between the two parties. If we can’t pass a budget, passing an amendment is probably impossible. However a law or even a congressional statement clarifying what “natural born citizen” means in a time when moving around the world is much faster and easier than the founders could possibly imagine sounds reasonable. Now that it’s the potential Republican candidate who could possibly run up against the issue maybe we’ll see some traction.
Personally, I’m torn between the value of shutting Trump up vs. the comedy of him making an ass of himself on the subject. Again.