Last night Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) announced his run for President of the United States.
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There are several Americans, both conservative and liberal, who believe Cruz is not eligible because he was born in Canada.
Ilya Shapiro at The Cato Institute argued this morning that Ted Cruz is indeed eligible to be US President.
I looked at the whole “natural-born citizen” requirement a couple of years ago and concluded that Cruz’s eligibility for the presidency is an easy legal call. Here’s the heart of the matter:
So the one remaining question is whether Ted Cruz was a citizen at birth. That’s an easy one. The Nationality Act of 1940 outlines which children become “nationals and citizens of the United States at birth.” In addition to those who are born in the United States or born outside the country to parents who were both citizens … citizenship goes to babies born to one American parent who has spent a certain number of years here.
That single-parent requirement has been amended several times, but under the law in effect between 1952 and 1986 — Cruz was born in 1970 — someone must have a citizen parent who resided in the United States for at least 10 years, including five after the age of 14, in order to be considered a natural-born citizen. Cruz’s mother, Eleanor Darragh, was born in Delaware, lived most of her life in the United States, and gave birth to little Rafael Edward Cruz in her 30s.