Over the last few days, a viral conspiracy theory making its way around the Internet claims that Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, must show his naturalization papers to retain his Senate seat. The article, which is featured on liberal sites like the far-left wing Democratic Underground, relies heavily upon a PDF file posted at Scribd. But, Factcheck.org said in March of this year, Cruz was a citizen at birth.
The file posted at Scribd claims to be “an authenticated timeline of known facts concerning the citizenship of Senator Ted Cruz,” but does not document who, exactly, made that determination. The link was also dated February 2015, one month before Factcheck made its determination.
It seems the sticking point is the citizenship of Cruz’s mother. One site that appears to have bought into the conspiracy says: “While Ted’s birth certificate shows that his mother was born in Delaware, there is no proof that is the case. Additionally, if she were born in Delaware and was originally a United States citizen, did she retain that citizenship in Canada?”
Writing for the Harvard Law Review, former U.S. solicitors general Neal Katyal and Paul Clement said Cruz qualifies as a “natural born citizen,” according to current understanding of Constitutional law. “All the sources routinely used to interpret the Constitution confirm that the phrase ‘natural born Citizen’ has a specific meaning: namely, someone who was a U.S. citizen at birth with no need to go through a naturalization proceeding at some later time. And Congress has made equally clear from the time of the framing of the Constitution to the current day that, subject to certain residency requirements on the parents, someone born to a U.S. citizen parent generally becomes a U.S. citizen without regard to whether the birth takes place in Canada, the Canal Zone, or the continental United States,” they wrote in March. Katyal, the Wall Street Journal reported, served in the Obama administration.
The Wall Street Journal’s Law Blog also said that Cruz is eligible to run for president. Even Politifact said that most legal scholars agree Cruz is eligible. Given those reports, it stands to reason he is eligible to serve in the U.S. Senate.
Cruz also addressed the issue in an interview with Fox News’ Sean Hannity. “The facts are clear. I was born in Calgary. My parents — as a legal matter, my mother is an American citizen by birth. And it’s been federal law for over two centuries that the child of an American citizen born abroad is a citizen by birth, a natural born citizen,” he said.
As we reported, Cruz released his birth certificate in August 2013. His mother’s birthplace is listed as Wilmington, Delaware. That certificate can be seen here.
Nevertheless, detractors from both sides of the political aisle continue to raise the issue, creating something of a “birther” movement against Cruz. Liberals push the theory simply because they hate Cruz. Alleged “conservatives” push the issue because he is too conservative and possibly too Christian for their taste. They can’t beat him in debate, as Ellen Page recently discovered, so they attempt to sully his character with unproven allegations in an attempt to distract voters from the real issues facing the country.
Given a choice, voters should weigh the evidence and ask themselves who they are going to believe. Will they side with multiple legal experts, including a former Obama solicitor general, or are they going to listen to wild-eyed conspiracy theorists with a Texas-sized chip on their shoulder?