Controversy has been swirling in the last few weeks over whether or not GOP Presidential hopeful Ted Cruz is eligible to hold the nation’s highest office, based on the fact he not born on US soil. Ted Cruz was born in Canada in 1970, where his Cuban father was working at the time. However, he was conferred American citizenship at birth because his mother is an American citizen. The Texas Republican also had Canadian citizenship until he renounced it in 2014. Legal experts all agree that there is no question as to whether or not Cruz is, and has always been a US citizen since his birth.
The question and debate centers around whether or not the US Constitution requires something more to be eligible to be president with its “Natural Born” terminology. It seems that if the candidate simply had to be a US citizen at birth, then the phrase wouldn’t have needed to be added. Some Legal experts argue that Natural Born simply means being a US citizen at birth, as opposed to achieving it later through the process of naturalization. What seems more logical is the definition means born on US soil, which was a big concern for the founding fathers when they wrote the constitution as they did not want anyone born on foreign soil, especially British soil, to be eligible to hold the young nation’s highest office. But determining what the intent was when the Constitution was written is far from an easy and clear task.
Trump drew a distinction between the eligibility of Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz, saying he has no issue with Rubio’s eligibility despite him being born to non-US citizens because he was born on US Soil. “It’s a different, very different thing because he was born here. He was born on the land,” Trump told CNN. “Ted was not born on the land, and there’s a very strict reading that you have to be born on the land.”