Breaking: Exclusive: Birth, Death Certificates Raise Questions as to Evolving Life Narrative of Ted Cruz and Parents


by Sharon Rondeau

The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea (RBKC) is located in the center of London and is the birthplace of Michael Wilson, a child born to Eleanor Darragh Cruz, the mother of presidential candidate Ted Cruz

(Apr. 19, 2016) — Late on Monday, an individual in the United States contacted The Post & Email to advise that he had received images of a birth and death certificate, respectively, for Michael Wilson, the five-month-old child born to presidential candidate Ted Cruz’s mother while she resided in the UK in 1966.

Cruz’s mother, née Eleanor Darragh, was born in Wilmington, Delaware on November 23, 1934, and it is through her U.S. citizenship that Cruz claims to be a “natural born Citizen,” as is required by Article II, Section 1, clause 5 of the U.S. Constitution to be eligible for the presidency.  Cruz was born in Calgary, Alberta, Canada to a Cuban father on December 22, 1970 but claims “natural born” status as the child of a U.S. citizen mother and one who did not have to be “naturalized.”

However, the U.S. Supreme Court opined in a 2011 citizenship case involving a foreign-born individual, “The fact that Congress has enacted a law under which some foreign-born individuals acquire U.S. citizenship at birth by virtue of a parent’s citizenship does not mean that such individuals are not naturalized for purposes of the Constitution.”

Many constitutional scholars believe that the Framers of the Constitution wished to preclude foreign influence from entering into the office of the nation’s chief executive as evidenced by a letter written by future U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice John Jay to George Washington, who was presiding over the Constitutional Convention of 1787.  “Permit me to hint, whether it would not be wise & seasonable to provide a strong check to the admission of Foreigners into the administration of our national Government, and to declare expressly that the Command in chief of the american army shall not be given to, nor devolved on, any but a natural born Citizen,” Jay wrote on July 25 of that year.

Washington later responded, “I thank you for the hints contained in your letter.”  The “natural born Citizen” requirement was reportedly adopted without debate for the office of president only.

In late January, The Post & Email paid for and obtained a certified copy of Darragh’s birth certificate from the State of Delaware, as vital statistics records, although initially protected by law, become releasable to the public after 72 years.

Documentation available on the internet often refers to Cruz’s mother as “Eleanor Elizabeth” or “Eleanor E.,” although no middle name appears on her birth certificate on the line labeled “Full name of child.”

On Tuesday, The Post & Email interviewed the individual, who we will call Jim Redding, as to what prompted him to hire a researcher to “obtain birth and death records for British subject in ’66” as stated when he placed his idea “out to bid” through a service with which freelance professionals register their services.

“Within 48 hours, I received a response from an individual who said, ‘I can get these for you,'” Redding told us.

“As proof that he knew what I wanted and was talking about, he sent the snapshot from a website on the topic.  I then said, ‘We already have this; what we’re looking for is British documents on Baby Michael,” and he said, ‘I can get those for you.  My fee is $185.00.'”

“Within a few days,” Redding told us, “he sent jpegs of the documents, and I wrote back and said, ‘I will consider the job completed and release your payment when you send me proof that the certified original copies are in the mail.'”

The researcher provided the tracking number assigned by the UK’s Royal Mail to the envelope on Monday, when it was taken from Dorset Mail Centre to Heathrow Worldwide DC on the first leg of its overseas journey.

The jpeg images reveal that the child, who died at the age of five months, bore the name “Michael Darragh” on his birth certificate but “Michael Wilson” on his death certificate.

The Dallas Morning News first reported in August 2013 that Ted Cruz was born a dual Canadian-U.S. citizen, which Cruz initially denied.  Within a day, however, he vowed to renounce his Canadian citizenship, stating that as a U.S. senator, he should be “only an American.”  Even then, it was speculated that Cruz would run for president in 2016 despite Fox News’s initial statement by political reporter Carl Cameron that Cruz was ineligible due to his foreign birth.

On June 10, 2014, The Dallas Morning News wrote that “The dual citizenship came as a surprise to Cruz and his parents.”

Although controversy exists over the “natural born Citizen” provision of the Constitution, it has been generally understood that “a naturalized citizen cannot serve” as president.  Some legal scholars believe Cruz is eligible based on the “citizen-from-birth” theory which has emerged since Cruz announced his presidential intentions, while others contend that anyone born outside the country, even to two U.S.-citizen parents, is ineligible.

On January 16, 2016, McClatchy News Service reported that it reached Darragh’s first husband, Alan Wilson, who still resides in the UK and who allegedly stated that he “was not the father of the baby” born in 1966 to Eleanor.  McClatchy further wrote:

Wilson makes a brief appearance in Cruz’s book, A Time for Truth: Reigniting the Promise of America, which was published last year.

“In 1956, my mom married her first husband, a mathematician named Alan Wilson,” Cruz wrote. The couple moved to London in 1960 after a few years working in the U.S., and Cruz revealed something of a bombshell: his mother had given birth to a son, Michael Wilson, in 1965, who had died a crib death later in the year.

Cruz wrote about her mother’s devastation: “Losing Michael to crib death broke my mother’s heart, and had a profound effect on her, so much so that I never even knew that I had had a brother until I was a teenager and my mother told me the story.”

Cruz added, “And the heartbreak also ended her marriage.”

However, on the death certificate, Alan Wilson is listed not only as the person reporting the baby’s passing, but also his father.  Contrary to what Alan Wilson reportedly told McClatchy, the “name on the birth certificate” is “Darragh,” not “Wilson,” while the latter appears as the baby’s last name on his death certificate.

While Cruz reportedly wrote in his book that his half-brother, Michael Wilson, died of “crib death,” the official reason provided on the death certificate is “acute bronchitis.” Additionally, the child was born and died in 1966, not 1965.

According to McClatchy, Alan Wilson said that he and Eleanor divorced in 1963.

In the Amazon introduction to his book published last June, Cruz states, “In the Senate, I’ve tried to do two things: tell the truth, and do what I said I would do. We should expect that from every single elected official.”  The summary of the book then begins, “Washington D.C. desperately needs leaders who aren’t afraid to tell the truth. And Ted Cruz tells the truth—about political collusion, a corrupted legislative process, and the bureaucratic barriers to actually fixing the enormous challenges we face. Cruz’s truth-telling habit hasn’t made him popular in Washington. But it has earned him millions of supporters nationwide.”

The introduction to the book itself is titled, “Mendacity.”

With Cruz’s connections to Canada, Cuba and Spanish-speakers, and the United States, some have speculated that Cruz is the “North American Union candidate.”  “When you think about it for a minute, how neat would it be for the planned North American Union to have Ted Cruz as President? Joint citizenship in the U.S. and a Canadian citizen — who is Hispanic and can speak Spanish?” wrote Marilyn Barnewall in her column at on February 17.

In January, Breitbart News reported discovering a document from Canada showing that Eleanor Cruz and her second husband, Rafael Bienvenido Cruz, appeared on a 1974 Canadian voter roll.  When contacted for comment, the Cruz campaign told Breitbart:

Eleanor was never a citizen of Canada, and she could not have been under the facts or the law. In short, she did not live in Canada long enough to be a Canadian citizen by the time Cruz was born in 1970: Canadian law required 5 years of permanent residence, and she moved to Canada in December 1967—only 3 years before Senator Cruz’s birth. Nothing in the document you sent shows anything to the contrary.

First, the document itself does not purport to be a list of “registered Canadian voters.” All this might conceivably establish is that this list of individuals (maybe) lived at the given addresses. It says nothing about who was a citizen eligible to vote.

The document itself states that it is a “preliminary list of electors” subject to “corrections in, deletions from and additions to the said preliminary list.”…

Second, the document is from 1974. That is four years after Senator Cruz was born, so even if this document said anything about citizenship—and it does not—it would be irrelevant to the citizenship status of his mother at the time of his birth, which is the only relevant status for determining Cruz’s natural-born citizenship.

According to a Government of Canada website, the Canadian Citizenship Act, which took effect on January 1, 1947, “contained provisions which provided special treatment for British subjects. In general, Canadian citizens who acquired citizenship of another country automatically lost Canadian citizenship (dual citizenship was not recognized).”

The Canadian Museum of Immigration reports that by the Citizenship Act of 1947, “Canadian citizenship was automatically conferred upon natural-born Canadians.”   “Natural-born citizens” as defined by the Act were “born either in Canada (with exceptions for foreign diplomatic personnel), or outside Canada if, at the time of birth, one parent is a Canadian citizen.”

The law was amended in 1977 by the Citizenship Act, which removed “special treatment” for British subjects and recognized dual citizenship.

In May 2014, Ted Cruz renounced his Canadian citizenship by submitting the required application and $100 fee, nine months after The Dallas Morning News reported that he possessed it.  Page 2 of the application asks the individual so renouncing whether or not he possesses, or will soon possess, citizenship in another country so as to prevent statelessness.

Other than a blank sample, the application is not releasable under Canadian law without a signed privacy waiver.  Cruz has repeatedly ignored requests to release more documentation about himself, particularly that which would connect him to U.S. citizenship.

Cruz told CNN in a January interview that his eligibility is “a non-issue” and that “the Constitution and laws…are straightforward” as to the meaning of the term “natural born Citizen.”

After Michael’s death, Eleanor reportedly returned to the United States and worked in Louisiana for a short time, where she met Rafael Bienvenido Cruz, and, according to the Cruz campaign, “moved to Canada in December 1967.”

According to divorce documents acquired by pertaining to Rafael and Eleanor, they were married on March 14, 1969. Divorce records can be obtained through Texas Public Information Act requests, as they are not protected from release by state law.

McClatchy also reported that Eleanor and Rafael married in 1969.  Neither source reported where the marriage allegedly took place.

Redding said that when the British researcher sent the jpeg images, he wrote in an email, “Unfortunately, I do not know how Mrs. Wilson obtained her [suspected British] citizenship.”

Michael Wilson does not appear to have been registered as a U.S. citizen born abroad, and many have questioned why Ted Cruz has not released a “Consular Report of Birth Abroad,” or CRBA, to show that he was designated as such following his birth in Canada.

Cruz may, in fact, be a Cuban citizen due to his father’s citizenship when he was born.

The following is Redding’s speculation as to actions Eleanor might have taken to obtain British citizenship herself and later, an expedited path to Canadian citizenship.  He responded to the British researcher’s email:

I said, “OK, you’ve accomplished the first task; my next task for you would be, if you can accept it, is to get some kind of access to UK applications for ‘anchor-baby’ processing.’ My thought was that once she had the birth certificate of Baby Michael in hand, and his last name is her maiden name, she would be able to take that document and maybe some other records that she had of her maiden status, not even reporting that she was a a married American in England and use those to – I wouldn’t say “forge,” but I would say only reveal what she wanted to reveal to the processors and said, “My baby is a British citizen; is there any provision where I can obtain citizenship?”

Using the anchor baby as leverage, my guess is that that is how she obtained her UK credentials.


The Post & Email will continue its interview with the researcher in a second installment.

Update:  This post has been corrected to quote the British researcher as having said, “I do not know how Mrs. Wilson obtained her [suspected British] citizenship” rather than “I do not know how Mrs. Wilson obtained his citizenship.”

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