Are Trump’s birther claims against Ted Cruz legitimate?

7 January 2016   
Are Trump’s birther claims against Ted Cruz legitimate?

As Ted Cruz surges ahead in the Iowa polls, leaving Donald Trump in an increasingly distant second place, Trump is pulling out all stops to besmirch Cruz’s reputation and hinder his chances at securing the GOP nomination. Weeks ago, when Cruz surpassed Trump in Iowa for the first time in the primary season, Trump referred to Cruz as a “maniac” but then appeared to be amicable with the Texas senator at the last GOP debate. However, the business mogul is rekindling his animosity toward Cruz, this time stirring the pot over allegations that Cruz may not even be eligible to run for president based on his citizenship status.

Speaking on Morning Joe Wednesday morning, host Joe Scarborough pressed Trump about his recent claims that Cruz’s Canadian birthplace may prevent the Texas senator from being able to win the GOP nomination. “This is something obviously you talked about before with Barack Obama, it’s something that I suspect we’re going to be hearing more about in the next couple weeks. Is there any validity to those claims?”

“I hope that’s not going to be a problem for him, but I’ve been hearing a lot about it…” Trump responded. “It’s a problem for him, and it’s a problem obviously for the Republicans,” he furthered. “Let’s assume he got a nomination and the Democrats bring suit, the suit takes two to three years to solve. So how do you run? So, it’s certainly a concern, I guess, for the party. But I hope that’s not the case.  I’m not involved in that, but a lot of people are bringing it up, absolutely.”

Trump claims that others brought up the allegations and that he is not involved in this issue, however he has been speaking about this very issue on numerous news shows, including this segment of Morning Joe as well as on Wolf Blitzer’s show on CNN yesterday afternoon. Additionally, Trump claimed earlier this week that Cruz should go to federal court to obtain a statement proving his American citizenship. That sounds a lot like involvement.

This issue is far more complicated than the general media has conveyed, given that the law requires the president to be a “natural-born citizen,” however that term is not defined in the U.S. Constitution. Thus, some claim that Cruz being born to American parents in Canada makes allows him to be president, while others argue otherwise.

This issue will continue to pan itself out over the next few weeks, as legal scholars chime in on Cruz’s eligibility; however, in the meantime, do you believe these birther claims are legitimate?