According to the U.S. State Department, Bureau of Consular Affairs, the U.S. citizen parent(s) of a child born on foreign soil must obtain a Consular Report of Birth Abroad (CRBA, Form FS-240) at some time prior to the child’s eighteenth birthday if the parent desires to pass on their U.S. citizenship to their offspring. Published rules of the Bureau read as follows:
In other words, it is not simply a matter of stopping off at the nearest U.S. Consulate with a newborn infant to announce that you are a U.S. citizen, that the child was born on foreign soil, and that you would like to insure that your American citizenship is passed on by descent to the child in question.“If you determine that the child born abroad qualifies for U.S. citizenship, please follow the instructions below in order to complete the required forms, prepare the necessary documents, and make an appointment at the U.S. Consulate General in Montreal. All applicants will need to provide the following forms and documents:
Please bring a return Canada Post Express Post envelope with you to your appointment so that we can mail your Consular Report of Birth Abroad to you when it is ready. Alternatively, you can pick it up two weeks later during our public hours.”
- Completed Form DS-2029 (50KB PDF). Please complete the form, but do NOT sign.
- Completed Application for a Social Security Number (Form SS-5-FS).
- Child’s original civil birth certificate.
- Proof of parent’s or parents’ U.S. citizenship (i.e. U.S. passport, Certificate of Naturalization and Citizenship, Consular Report of Birth Abroad, etc.).
- Proof of identity of parents and child (i.e. passports, regardless of nationality).
- Parents’ original civil marriage certificate.
- Termination of any previous marriages of either parent (i.e. divorce decree, death certificate, etc.) if applicable.
- Fee of US$100 payable in cash (U.S. or Canadian), or Visa, Mastercard.
- If only one parent is a U.S. citizen, evidence of his/her physical presence in the United States sufficient to transmit citizenship to the child (as indicated in http://canada.usembassy.gov/consular_services/birth-abroad.html).
- Make an appointment online before you show up at the Consulate.
- All children must appear in person with the parent signing.
So the question arises, did Ted Cruz’s parents assemble all the necessary documents and then drive or fly to the office of the U.S. Consulate General in Montreal, a distance of 2,196 miles? Or did they simply rely on the fact that his mother was a U.S. citizen, assuming that her U.S. citizenship would be automatically passed on to her son?