The Widdershins

Archive for August 22nd, 2013

Good Thursday, Widdershins.

Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) has recently made the astounding discovery that he is also a citizen of Canada.  Astounding to him, at least.

Senator Cruz was born in Calgary to an American mother and a Cuban father who fled to the US, but did not become a citizen until 2005.  His parents were working in (what else?) the oil industry at the time, and a few years later returned to Texas.  Cruz received his undergraduate degree from Princeton, and his JD from Harvard.  He was named primary editor of the Harvard Law Review.   

Sen. Cruz enjoyed a top-notch Ivy League education, and  is described by many as “off the charts brilliant”, and indeed has a meteoric career in politics. Nevertheless, this “OTC”  brilliant man was quite surprised to discover that he holds Canadian citizenship as a birthright, along with the American citizenship passed on by his mother.  Who knows, perhaps he is a Cuban citizen courtesy of his father as well.  At ant rate, Sen. Cruz insists that he will renounce his Canadian citizenship tout suite, dissociating himself once and for all from our pantywaist neighbors to the north who insist that their citizens are entitled to a decent lifestyle.

This is a revolting development for a man who seemingly has is eye on the prize of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.  I have been fascinated by the reactions of my Fundie friends who ranted and raved about Barack Obama not being an American citizen because he had a Kenyan father and probably wasn’t even born here.  Somehow, Ted’s Cuban father and Canadian birth are fine and dandy, because after all, it’s Canada.  Canada, I suppose is actually a suburb of the nearest American city of your choice, while Kenya does not possess a contiguous border with the US.  The same Fundies who screamed and carried on about Obama being a first-term senator when he ran are fine with it with Cruz, because he has “fresh, new ideas”.  This is deja vu all over again, albeit with a rightward twist.  Amazingly, my Fundie friends do not see anything even remotely odd about their sudden change of feelings.  It all seems quite reasonable to them.  Even those pinko institutions of higher learning attended by the Obamas have suddenly become academic meccas now that they have discovered that Cruz matriculated within their ivy-laden walls.  Go figure.

Seriously, I’m not certain that anyone knows for certain if Senator Cruz is actually eligible to run.  The Constitution states that only natural citizens may hold the office without actually describing what that means.  The question came up when Sen. John McCain ran, but was quickly answered by the fact that he was born in the Canal Zone when his father was posted there.  At the time, the Canal Zone was an American territory, plus his father was in the Navy and US military bases are considered to be US soil and issue US birth certificates.  (My BFF was born in Cavite, Philipines while his father was assigned there and has his original “US Registration of Live Birth” form.)  But what the hey, exactly, is a “natural citizen”?

For those of us born to American parents on American soil, that’s easy.   We are most definitely “Natural” citizens.  After that, things get murky.  I have heard a number of Constitutional law professors mumble something to the effect that “yeah, probably, Ted Cruz is a ‘natural’ citizen”, but that falls somewhat short of being a ringing endorsement.  The Supremes have never weighed in on the matter, so who knows?

I must, however. give props to Donald Trump here.  When asked about Sen. Cruz’ ability to run for President, he replied “Probably not”.  At least he is consistent.

As for the Canadians, they thus far do not appear to be too broken up by Sen. Cruz’ announcement that he plans to disavow his Canadian citizenship.  Tweets from our northern neighbor have run the gamut from “Ted who?” to “Good riddance to bad rubbish.”  From what I’ve read, it’s going to take Ted the better part of a year to ditch them, as he has to explain in writing why he does not wish to be a Canadian (that should be interesting), and undergo some sort of security clearance.  It’s not quite as simple as saying “I renounce thee” three times.

The Cruz candidacy may take off, or may stall out at the first hard turn.  I have to believe that the Canadian birth might be a little bit awkward, but time will tell.  If nothing else, it could be intereresting to watch.

This is an open thread.  Come on, everyone – let’s stand on cars and freeze.

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