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“CONSENT MUST BE PROVIDED BY SENATOR CRUZ…”
by Sharon Rondeau
(Apr. 11, 2015) — On March 23, 2015, Sen. Rafael Edward “Ted” Cruz declared his candidacy for the U.S. presidency in 2016. On the same day, his political committee, Cruz for President, filed an official Statement of Candidacy with the Federal Elections Commission (FEC).
Cruz was born on December 22, 1970 in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. His mother, Eleanor Darragh, was born an American citizen, and his father, Rafael Bienvenido Cruz, was born a citizen of Cuba.
In an interview with NPR in June 2013, Rafael Bienvenido Cruz stated that while he and his wife were working in the Canadian oil industry, he became a Canadian citizen. It has been suggested, but not yet been verified, that his wife also became a Canadian citizen during that time. Speculation also exists that Eleanor may have maintained her U.S. citizenship while in Canada but applied for and received Canadian citizenship, rendering her a dual US-Canadian citizen.
Article II, Section 1, clause 5 of the U.S. Constitution mandates that the president and Commander-In-Chief be a “natural born Citizen.” Extensive research shows that the term of art included by the Founders at the insistence of John Jay referred to two generations of United States citizens. The section’s “grandfather clause,” stated as “or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution,” exempted the Founders themselves from the “natural born” mandate, allowing any one of them to serve as president since they had fought in the American Revolution against Great Britain.
The Founders were known to have relied heavily upon the treatise on international relations titled “The Law of Nations,” written by Swiss jurist Emmerich de Vattel. In Book I, Chapter 1, Section 212, Vattel wrote:
§ 212. Citizens and natives.
The citizens are the members of the civil society; bound to this society by certain duties, and subject to its authority, they equally participate in its advantages. The natives, or natural-born citizens, are those born in the country, of parents who are citizens. As the society cannot exist and perpetuate itself otherwise than by the children of the citizens, those children naturally follow the condition of their fathers, and succeed to all their rights. The society is supposed to desire this, in consequence of what it owes to its own preservation; and it is presumed, as matter of course, that each citizen, on entering into society, reserves to his children the right of becoming members of it. The country of the fathers is therefore that of the children; and these become true citizens merely by their tacit consent. We shall soon see whether, on their coming to the years of discretion, they may renounce their right, and what they owe to the society in which they were born. I say, that, in order to be of the country, it is necessary that a person be born of a father who is a citizen; for, if he is born there of a foreigner, it will be only the place of his birth, and not his country.
According to the Encylopaedia Britannica, The Law of Nations “was especially influential in the United States because his principles of liberty and equality coincided with the ideals expressed in the Declaration of Independence.”
Vattel’s work was quoted by George D. Collins writing for The American Law Review in 1884.
On the day Cruz declared his candidacy, left-leaning TIME Magazine wrote that “Though it’s a common misconception, being born in Canada does not necessarily exclude Cruz, the child of an American citizen, from the White House. In fact, he’s one of many potential presidents over the years who have been born abroad.”
TIME made the argument that the 1790 Naturalization Act of Congress addressed the citizenship of children born in foreign countries to U.S.-citizen parents or fathers. The article further cites “born-abroad politicians” who did not seek the presidency and therefore were not required to meet the qualification of “natural born Citizen.”
The TIME article raises the question of the presidential eligibility of Chester A. Arthur in relating that he might have been born outside of the United States. However, research performed by former attorney Leo Donofrio indicates that Arthur’s eligibility problem arose from his father’s lack of U.S. citizenship when Chester Arthur was born, a fact Arthur apparently attempted to conceal by burning the family Bible containing the records just before his death.
Some of the Founders, such as George Washington, were born on U.S. soil to British-citizen parents, while some were born in other British colonies. While many people today argue that a simple birth within the United States suffices as “natural born,” the clause would not have been invoked in the Constitution were that the case in the Founders’ view.
When many of the Framers, such as James Madison, were born in the colonies, their parents were considered British citizens even if they, too, had been born within the American colonies.
A biography of Madison states that Barack Obama is a descendant of Madison’s wife, Dolley.
In a lengthy essay written in 1916 by Missouri attorney and later Assistant Secretary of State Breckenridge Long, a natural born Citizen was described as a person born in the United States to a U.S.-citizen father. Long contended that Charles Evans Hughes, who ran against Pres. Woodrow Wilson in 1916, was ineligible to seek the presidency because at the time of his birth, his father was not a naturalized U.S. citizen.
Long differentiated between “native born” and “natural born” when he wrote:
The Constitution of the United States puts a particular qualification upon those who shall become President and Vice-President. For all other offices it requires that they be “citizens of the United States,” but for the Presidency and Vice-Presidency it requires that they be “Natural Born citizens.” The word “natural” means “of the nature of”; “naturally a part of”; “by the laws of nature an integral part of” a system. Following that line of thought, a“natural born” citizen would be one who was naturally, at his birth, a member of the political society; naturally, a part of the political system into which he was born; by the laws of nature a citizen of the society into which he was born. It would mean, further, that no other government had any claim upon him; that his sole allegiance was to the government into which he had been born and that that government was solely, at the time, responsible for his protection. “Native born” does not mean quite the same thing. He might be born in a country under conditions similar to the conditions under which Mr.Hughes was born, and subsequently become a citizen of that Country. In that case, after he became a citizen, he would be a “native born” citizen, but he would not have been a “natural born” citizen. From the instant of his birththis government would not be solely responsible for his protection.
An opinion piece published in The Harvard Law Review the week prior to Cruz’s announcement claimed that Cruz is a natural born Citizen by virtue of his birth to one U.S.-citizen parent, regardless of his place of birth.
In 2008, members of Congress and Obama supporters claimed that Obama’s purported birth in Hawaii on August 4, 1961 to a U.S.-citizen mother was enough to qualify him as a natural born Citizen.
Obama’s father was a citizen of Great Britain, and later, Kenya, when Kenya achieved its independence from Great Britain in December 1963. The new Kenyan Constitution, ratified by the voters on August 4, 2010, extends to anyone with one parent possessing Kenyan citizenship a Kenyan citizen him- or herself, which includes Obama if his life narrative is accurate.
Following Cruz’s presidential announcement, The Post & Email submitted a number of requests under the 1996 Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) to various federal agencies to determine whether or not Cruz was registered at birth as a United States citizen, later naturalized as a U.S. citizen, and whether or not he declared himself a U.S. citizen on any required federal applications.
A Public Information Act request made to the state of Texas last fall for Cruz’s applications for the post of state Solicitor General revealed that he was not asked whether or not he possessed U.S. citizenship. In August 2013, Cruz appeared to learn through an article at The Dallas Morning News that he had been a Canadian citizen his entire life by virtue of his physical birth in that country.
The voters of Texas were therefore not informed during Cruz’s 2012 U.S. Senate race that possessed Canadian citizenship.
For 20 months ending in February 2003, Cruz served as Director of Policy Planning at the Federal Trade Commission in Washington, DC. After The Post & Email submitted a FOIA request to the FTC for documents Cruz had signed, agency attorney Anna Murray directed us to 116 pages of documents released in response to a similar request made by a private individual last November.
In the documents, Cruz identified himself as “R. Ted Cruz” or “Ted Cruz.”
The Post & Email has followed up with Ms. Murray to determine if additional documents are available.
On March 24, 2015, The Post & Email requested of the U.S. Citizenship and Naturalization Service (USCIS) the “naturalization record, if it exists, of Rafael Edward ‘Ted’ Cruz, a declared presidential candidate with no further presumption of privacy.”
On April 10, 2015, we received the following response:
An article written by a contributor to the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press (RCFP) during the 2012 presidential campaign reported that while personal information is often withheld from FOIA request responses on public figures, “mounting public interest has suggested that transparency and ethics regulations monitoring candidates running for public office should perhaps take into account certain personal records in their capacity to affect official government business.”
Writer Amanda Simmons began her article with:
In 2004, Jack Ryan, a successful investment banker, was the Republican nominee in a close race for a U.S. Senate seat in Illinois, when two Chicago news media organizations successfully argued for the public disclosure of his previously sealed divorce records. Ryan opposed the records’ release and the ensuing revelation of a salacious sex scandal with his ex-wife derailed his campaign, paving the way for his opponent, a little-known Democrat from the Illinois State Senate, to win the November election by a landslide.
His name was Barack Obama.
Years later, as president, Obama of course became embattled with a private records controversy of his own, when Donald Trump and other supporters of the ‘birther’ movement pressured him to release his long-form birth certificate to prove that he was born in the United States and is qualified for the presidency. Leading up to Obama’s securing of the Democratic party’s nomination for reelection in April, obstinate skeptics filed lawsuits in 13 states challenging his eligibility to be listed on the primary ballots unless he showed more proof of his natural-born U.S. citizenship.