BALLOT CHALLENGE HEARING 9:00 A.M. ON MONDAY IN MERCERVILLE, NJ
by Sharon Rondeau
(Apr. 10, 2016) — On Saturday evening, The Post & Email published the first part of an interview with write-in Republican presidential candidate Victor Williams, who has filed ballot challenges in nine states with upcoming primaries against the candidacy of Sen. Ted Cruz on the claim that Cruz is not a “natural born Citizen,” as Article II of the Constitution requires of the president and commander-in-chief.
Williams is a long-time law professor currently teaching at Catholic University of America in Washington, DC who entered the race last month to attain “competitive candidate” status with Cruz so as to challenge Cruz’s placement on the ballots of the nine states with upcoming primaries and be deemed to have “standing” by the administrative law courts hearing those challenges.
The campaign slogan appearing at the top-right of his website reads, “PUT AMERICA FIRST Disqualify Ted Cruz…”
The nine states where Williams obtained write-in status and to which he has submitted ballot challenges to Cruz are California, Montana, Nebraska, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Washington, Wisconsin, and New Jersey, the latter of which has scheduled a hearing on the ballot objection for Monday, April 11, 2016 at 9:00 a.m. at the Office of Administrative Law in Mercerville.
The New Jersey Division of Elections lists the constitutional requirements of the president as well as other elected offices and requires that each candidate provide a sworn statement attesting to his or her eligibility. The New Jersey constitution and a state statute also require that candidates meet signatory requirements in addition to the eligibility criteria in the applicable sections of the U.S. Constitution.
According to a website page relating to filing a challenge to a candidate’s legitimacy, if the Office of Administrative Law (OAL) denies an objector’s challenge, the objector may appeal to the Superior Court of New Jersey, Appellate Division.
Williams filed his objection on March 28. Democrat and Republican presidential candidates wishing to appear on New Jersey primary ballots for the June 7 primary faced an April 4, 2016 filing deadline. “I had an opposition waiting for Mr. Cruz when he filed his petition that day,” Williams told us on Saturday.
Williams’s challenge to Cruz’s placement on New Jersey primary ballots claims that “Canadian-born” Cruz completed a “false petition certificate” and is guilty of “Statements fraudulently made to obtain ballot access.” Further, Williams states:
On his website, Williams states that in regard to the challenges he has filed, “…Failure to disqualify Mr. Cruz from the primary ballots, will lead to certain litigation. The lawsuits may be initiated ex ante or ex post the primary election dates…Cruz must be disqualified from the ballot in the remaining primary sates and his pledged-delegates must either be released or not be seated at the 2016 Cleveland Nominating Convention.” [sic]
As of this writing, Cruz’s name currently appears on an “unofficial list” of “Candidates for President” dated April 4, 2016 along with Bernie Sanders, Hillary Clinton, John Kasich, and Donald Trump, all of which show the number of signatures presented by each candidate. As a write-in candidate, Williams’s name is not included on the list.
During Saturday’s interview, this writer explained that The Post & Email had its origins in the controversy surrounding Barack Hussein Obama’s eligibility to serve, with Obama having claimed a birth in Hawaii to a U.S.-citizen mother and foreign-citizen father who was in the U.S. on a student visa. “Eight years later, we’re now talking about someone born in a foreign country to a foreign father who says he is eligible,” we noted to Williams.
“It is so interesting, and I have to confess, it’s been a tough row to hoe to get up to speed,” he responded, referring to the “natural born Citizen” eligibility issue, “but what I’m absolutely confident of is that Mr. Cruz is in no way eligible. He was born on foreign soil of a foreign father, and his mother, at best, was an American citizen at one point in her life, but she had been living in Canada for a significant amount of time. I don’t have evidence of this, but I’ve seen many reports that she was at one time on a Canadian voter list.”
THE P&E: Yes, Breitbart reported that along with a statement from the Cruz campaign claiming that the names of Cruz’s parents appeared on the voter roll after a sort of census was conducted but that it was not indicative of their citizenship status.
MR. WILLIAMS: What we know is regardless of whether you take a very strict view of what “natural born” is, which is “born on the soil of two parents who are both citizens” or a little broader view, which would simply say, “born on the soil” — and there are good arguments to be made on all sides — what we know for certain is by Mr. Cruz’s own admission, by the evidence of his own birth certificate, by the trouble that he took to relinquish his Canadian citizenship in May 2014, Mr. Cruz could in no way can qualify for the presidency because there is no way he can say he is a “natural born Citizen.”
THE P&E: Some of Cruz’s surrogates and supporters, including [attorney and radio show host] Mark Levin, say that the Founders would never have excluded someone born on foreign soil who was born to a U.S.-citizen parent. They are promoting the “citizen-by-birth” theory, as are the two former solicitors general who wrote the editorial in the Harvard Law Review Forum. Perhaps it was coincidental, maybe not, but that piece was published 12 days before Cruz declared his candidacy.
MR. WILLIAMS: Yes, I recognize that. We have to be very clear and very direct to say that to be a naturalized citizen at birth is not the same as being a “natural born Citizen.” As a matter of fact, it is antithetical to that. At most, Mr. Cruz was a naturalized citizen, and that naturalization took effect somewhat automatically at the time of his birth. But there’s just no getting around the fact that at his birth, he was a foreign alien and that if he is now an American citizen, it is through a naturalization statute.
I have to say this: I have received a lot of emails in the last week from individuals in this country who are naturalized citizens. There are about 650,000 individuals a year who become citizens through naturalization. Many of their emails say that “The quality of Mr. Cruz’s citizenship is no different from mine; we are both naturalized citizens.” These people are very, very proud to now be American citizens by statute, through naturalization. Mr. Cruz’s citizenship status is no better than theirs; he didn’t have to jump through all the hoops and go through all the processes that they did, but the quality of his citizenship is no different than those other naturalized citizens.
THE P&E: Shortly after the primaries began this year, I was contacted by the child of two natural born Citizens. The child was born in Germany at a U.S. Army hospital as a result of his or her father having been stationed there while serving as a corporal. The child (now an adult) provided his or her birth registration recorded by the Foreign Service of the United States and reported that he or she was asked to provide a naturalization certificate when commencing the enlistment process at age 17 as well as on other occasions to prove his U.S. citizenship.
It seems that now the definition of “natural born Citizen” has been twisted to mean various things, including being born abroad to one U.S.-citizen parent. Given the generally-accepted meaning of the term by many Americans of “born in the United States,” how do you think Mr. Cruz has gotten this far in the presidential election cycle?
MR. WILLIAMS: Well, you put your finger on it. First you get the political establishment to plant a Harvard Law Review online piece, and that’s what the solicitors general did. So that was the foundation, and notice that all of the defenses of Mr. Cruz always cite that piece. It’s just fascinating.
Williams further told The Post & Email that he has been a supporter of Republican candidate Donald Trump, although he has now become his competitor. Williams said that “the one point of disagreement I have with Mr. Trump is his failure to zealously prosecute any action against Mr. Cruz’s eligibility.”
On a different topic, The Post & Email asked Williams if he believes that law schools teach the U.S. Constitution to law students today, to which he responded, “It’s not taught as well as it should be taught. I think that even in the most leftist of law schools, and that would be the majority of them, there is at least the recognition of the constitutional history; that we started with the first constitution, the Articles of Confederation; and then there was a need to go to the second Constitution, our U.S. Constitution. But it’s a matter of degree: do you take that as Scripture, or do you go off and say, ‘But now we have an evolving constitution’? That’s the mistake I think the majority of law schools and law school faculties make. They then go on and say, ‘Now we’re able to evolve the Constitution; not through Article V, the means the document itself contains; but through court decisions.’ But I do believe that most law schools start at the correct place; it’s just that they move away from that point.”
For those wishing to attend the ballot hearing on Monday morning, the location is:
Office Of Administrative Law
3444 Quakerbridge Road
Mercerville (Hamilton Twp.), NJ 08619
The Post & Email will continue to follow Williams’s ballot challenges and campaign.