In the past few weeks, there’s been a growing debate over whether Senator Ted Cruz is eligible to run for President. There are certain basic facts that everyone agrees on: Ted Cruz was born in 1970 in Alberta, Canada, to an American mother and a Cuban father; the family relocated to Texas in 1974 and Cruz grew up there. The Constitution requires that a person who runs for President be a “natural born citizen.” Is a person with one American parent who was born outside of the U.S. eligible to be President?
- If both parents are U.S. citizens, the child is a citizen if either of the parents has ever had a residence in the U.S. prior to the child's birth
- If one parent is a U.S. citizen and the other parent is a U.S. national, the child is a citizen if the U.S. citizen parent has lived in the U.S. for a continuous period of at least one year prior to the child's birth
- If one parent is a U.S. citizen and the other parent is not, the child is a citizen if
- the U.S. citizen parent has been "physically present" in the U.S. before the child's birth for a total period of at least five years,and
- at least two of those five years were after the U.S. citizen parent's fourteenth birthday.