Eligibility Issue Not Settled; Serious Constitutional Crisis!?
Some on both sides claimed over the years that the Article II presidential eligibility question is a settled issue.
Well, not according to the LA Slimes...
Excerpts via LA Times:
Question Ted Cruz should ask: Can a foreign-born American be president?
There's at least one hitch: Ted Cruz was born in Calgary, in the Canadian province of Alberta. His mother was a U.S. citizen, born in Delaware; his father, a Cuban refugee working in Canada's oil fields. Thanks to his mother, Cruz was a U.S. citizen at birth.
But that doesn't clear up a legal muddle that's as old as the Constitution: Is a U.S. citizen born abroad qualified to serve as president?
I don't agree with Cruz on most issues. He wants to repeal Obamacare, abolish the Internal Revenue Service and pass a constitutional amendment allowing states to outlaw gay marriage, just to take the top of his list. But I still hope he runs — because it's high time we established the right of Canadian-born Americans to serve as president.
Cruz hasn't simply renounced Canadian moderation; last year, he formally renounced the Canadian half of his dual citizenship.
But even that doesn't settle the constitutional issue — at least not to the satisfaction of some of the "birthers" who charged that President Obama was born outside the United States. "Clearly there is an issue of eligibility," chief birther Orly Taitz told U.S. News a while ago. "It's basically the same issue as Obama."
Except that in Cruz's case, he really was born in a foreign country.
Surprisingly, some legal scholars agree — not that Cruz is unqualified, but that the question isn't a slam-dunk. The Constitution says only a "natural born citizen" can serve as president, but it isn't clear whether the Founding Fathers intended that to include U.S. citizens born abroad.
"The consensus [among constitutional lawyers] is that it means citizens at birth," said Gabriel Chin, a professor at UC Davis. "But people are not 1000% confident."
"In my view, it does merit a test," agreed Sarah Helene Duggin, a professor at the Catholic University of America. Indeed, she argued, if Cruz were to win the Republican nomination, it would be in the nation's interest to get the question settled early.
"If we ever get to the point where we have a presidential candidate with this issue, we will need a clarification," she said. "If the candidate were elected and then disqualified, that would be a serious constitutional crisis." [...] Continued @ LA Times.
There's a reason there were many failed attempts to amend the Article II presidential eligibility requirement.
The serious constitutional crisis started with Obama. The issue should have been settled back in 2008.
@ LA Slimes: Release the Obama and Khalidi video!