...maybe Senator Cruz, Chairman of the Senate Commerce Subcommittee on Space, Science and Competitiveness, can tell us what he knows about persons born in foreign countries getting a security clearance from the U.S. Government. Cruz said that “as a U.S. Senator, I believe I should be only an American,” but he did not disclose to the people of Texas that he was a citizen of Canada at birth when he ran for that office. This is even with U.S. Senators, among the various responsibilities they have relative to U.S. relations with foreign nations, being called upon to vote on treaties with foreign nations. In 2014, after being confronted by the public media about his Canadian birthright citizenship, Cruz did renounce that Canadian citizenship with which he was born. That was 18 months after he took the oath of office as a U.S. Senator. But Cruz, born to a Cuban citizen father, was also born potentially a Cuban citizen at birth. To date, he has not mentioned his potential Cuban citizenship at birth, even though he could have qualified through his Cuban father for that citizenship under the Cuban Constitution. What have Cruz’s activities been in the U.S. Senate relative to the United States normalizing relations with Cuba? I am not faulting and never would fault Cruz for his birth circumstances. But a U.S. Senator and President, acting in a public capacity, has to disclose to the public what his or her private interest via-a-vis a foreign nation may be.Mario Apuzzo, Esq.
Regardless of what Cruz knew or did not know about his Canadian citizenship, Cruz was born in Canada presumably to a U.S. citizen mother, but to a non-U.S. citizen father. Hence, he was not born in the country to parents who were its citizens, which means that he is not nor can he be a citizen through his birth circumstances alone. Rather, he is what Minor called an “alien of foreigner” in need of naturalization. Therefore, he is not nor can he be a natural born citizen. Not being a natural born citizen, for him to be a citizen he needed the aid of a positive law, which in his case is a naturalization Act of Congress. He was not born in the United States and so he could not rely upon the Fourteenth Amendment, which provides the floor standard of citizenship for those born in the United States, requiring that they be at least born subject to its jurisdiction. Being born in a foreign country, he had to rely upon a naturalization Act of Congress, without which Cruz would have been born an alien. This means that Cruz is at best a naturalized "citizen" of the United States "at birth," so made only by a naturalization Act of Congress (in his case it is the Immigration and Naturalization Act of 1952). Congress through a naturalization Act made Cruz a citizen of the United States “at birth,” meaning that he did not have to go through any naturalization process after birth. But still, it is only because of this naturalization Act that his birth circumstances allowed him to be a citizen of the United States at birth. In other words, Cruz's birth circumstances alone would have made him an alien and not a citizen. It is only by virtue of that naturalization Act which took up his birth circumstances and allowed him to become a citizen at birth. He therefore is not and cannot be a “natural” born citizen.
Cruz and his supporters proclaim that the Framers would have accepted Cruz as a true natural born citizen because of how the First Congress treated persons such as him in the Naturalization Act of 1790. First, Congress does not have the constitutional power to make anyone a natural born citizen. In matters of citizenship, the Constitution at Article I, Section 8, Clause 4 gives to Congress only the power [t]o establish an uniform Rule of Naturalization . . . throughout the United States.” This naturalization power does not include the power to make anyone a natural born citizen, who does not need any naturalization Act of Congress or any other law to be a citizen. Congress was not given any powers to bestow citizenship upon anyone through any process other than naturalization. Hence, if Congress made those foreign-born children citizens of the United States, it did so only through its naturalization powers.
Second, that Act is a naturalization Act of Congress and surely a natural born citizen does not need a naturalization Act of Congress to be a "natural" born citizen.
Third, the Act provided: “And the children of such person so naturalized, dwelling within the United States, being under the age of twenty one years at the time of such naturalization, shall also be considered as citizens of the United States. And the children of citizens of the United States that may be born beyond Sea, or out of the limits of the United States, shall be considered as natural born Citizens.” Congress treated children born in the United States to alien parents as aliens who could naturalize as citizens of the United States upon their parents naturalization if done during their children’s minority and when they shall be dwelling in the United States. This was consistent with the definition of a natural born citizen which provided that only children born in the country to parents who were citizens were natural born citizens and therefore also ipso facto citizens of the United States. As to children born out of the United States, the Act said that children born out of the United States to U.S. citizen parents (both father and mother had to be U.S. citizens) "shall be considered as natural born citizens of the United States." Hence, it only treated children born out of the United States to U.S. citizen parents for all intents and purposes as natural born citizens, meaning that it gave by statute to those children the same privileges, immunities, and rights enjoyed by true natural born citizens which under the Constitution could not include the privilege of being President. Fourth, Congress, under the leadership of James Madison and with the approval of President Washington, repealed that Act in 1795, when it passed the Naturalization Act of 1795, which provided in Section 3: “And be it further enacted, that the children of persons duly naturalized, dwelling within the United States, and being under the age of twenty-one years, at the time of such naturalization, and the children of citizens of the United States, born out of the limits and jurisdiction of the United States, shall be considered as citizens of the United States.” As we can see, Congress, again consistent with the definition of a natural born citizen, treated children born in the United States to alien parents as aliens, allowing them to become citizens of the United States upon their parents naturalizing if done during their children’s minority and if those children shall be dwelling in the United States. It also surgically removed the "shall be considered as natural born citizens” language of the 1790 Act and replaced it with "shall be considered as citizens of the United States." What is critical to understand is that Congress treated children who naturalized after birth and those who became citizens at birth by birth out of the United States to U.S. citizen parents the same, i.e., as “citizens of the United States.” Congress clearly informed that those children born out of the United States to U.S. citizen parents were not to be accepted as natural born citizens, but rather as citizens of the United States, like children who become citizens through naturalization after birth. Congress has never again used the natural born citizen language in any of its naturalization Acts. Rather, it has since 1795 told us that any person becoming a citizen under one of its naturalization Acts is a citizen of the United States. It is amazing that those who rely upon the 1790 Act to demonstrate that Cruz is a natural born citizen omit from their story that Congress repealed that Act in 1795 and in the 1795 Act said that those children shall be considered as citizens of the United States and not as natural born citizens.
Fifth, Cruz was born to an alien father which means that he could not benefit from the 1790 Act which required a child born out of the territory and jurisdiction of the United States be born, not only to a U.S. citizen mother but also to a U.S. citizen father to be bestowed U.S. citizenship at birth. The 1790 Act, along with that of 1795 and 1802, also required that the citizen father be a resident of the United States prior to his child’s birth. Not until 1934 could someone like Cruz, born in a foreign country to a U.S. citizen mother and alien father, become a citizen of the United States. Somebody born under the birth circumstances of a Ted Cruz, born in a foreign country presumably to a U.S. citizen mother and to an alien father, was not even a citizen of the United States let alone a natural born citizen of the United States until 1934, when Congress passed a naturalization Act for the first time allowing children born out of the United States to a U.S. citizen mother and to an alien father to qualify as a citizen of the United States. Cruz and his supporters also hide this little inconvenient truth from the public. Surely, we are not to reasonably believe that someone born under the same birth circumstances as Cruz, who was under the Constitution and under the naturalization Acts of Congress an alien from 1776 until 1934 and only become a citizen in 1934, could be a natural born citizen.
Cruz is correct that if he wants to be President and Commander in Chief, he has to be “only an American.” But for a natural born citizen, that status starts at birth, not at age 43, which is when Cruz renounced the foreign citizenship with which he was born.
The Founders and Framers wrote the Constitution in a way that best provided for the protection of our unalienable rights to life, liberty, property, and the pursuit of happiness. They sought to do that by giving us a constitutional republic and providing for the survival and preservation of that republic. In the governmental scheme that they gave us, they provided for the Office of President and Commander in Chief, a singular and all-powerful office involving the concentration of both civilian and military power into one person. Because of such concentration of power in one individual, the Framers recognized that such offices also presented great risk to the republic and its people. They therefore gave us the “natural born Citizen” clause as one basis for eligibility to such offices. Through the natural born citizen clause, they instructed us that such power must fall into the hands of a person who can be trusted with it to the greatest degree possible and that such guarantee is of much greater importance to the survival and preservation of the constitutional republic than the fleeting politics and personal favor of having one person necessarily occupy that office. What is profound is that the Founders and Framers put their trust in “Nature and Nature’s God” and not in political and legal institutions to accomplish that end. This historical and legal evidence, not meant to be exhaustive, provides a clear picture that Ted Cruz is not a natural born citizen and therefore not eligible to be President. So, is Ted Cruz a natural born citizen and to be “TrusTed?” I think not.
March 7, 2016