Trump plays birther card

Donald Trump has played the ‘birther’ card before, against Barack Obama.

And he’s just tried the same trick against Ted Cruz in the Republican race for presidential nomination.

Donald Trump Goes ‘Birther’ On Ted Cruz

First Donald Trump took aim at rival Ted Cruz’s evangelical credentials. Now he’s questioning whether the Canadian-born Texas senator is even eligible for the White House.

“Republicans are going to have to ask themselves the question: ‘Do we want a candidate who could be tied up in court for two years?’ That’d be a big problem,” Trump said of Cruz’s birthplace and citizenship in an interview with the Washington Post. “It’d be a very precarious one for Republicans because he’d be running and the courts may take a long time to make a decision. You don’t want to be running and have that kind of thing over your head.”

This is another Trump sideshow. He must be feeling some pressure.

Back in 2011, when Trump first floated a GOP presidential run, he famously questioned whether President Obama was actually born in Hawaii.

After the Trump-fueled controversy over Obama’s birthplace, the question over Cruz’s was a natural one that’s already come up. Cruz was born in Calgary, Canada, in 1970 while his parents were working in the oil industry. Though his dad is from Cuba, his mother was a U.S. citizen, having been born in Delaware.

Experts say there is no question about Cruz’s eligibility.

Legal scholars have agreed that Cruz and the other candidates before him would indeed be eligible for the White House. Neal Katyal, who was acting solicitor general in the Obama administration, and Paul Clement, who was the solicitor general under George W. Bush, wrote in the Harvard Law Review that “there is no question” Cruz is eligible and that “”Cruz has been a citizen from birth and is thus a ‘natural born Citizen’ within the meaning of the Constitution” and the “Naturalization Act of 1790.”

The possibility that Cruz may not be eligible for the White House is something that Trump himself even dismissed last fall.

“I hear it was checked out by every attorney and every which way, and I understand Ted is in fine shape,” Trump told ABC News last September of his rival’s constitutional eligibility because of his birthplace.

And Trump has previously accepted Cruz doesn’t have an eligibility problem.

But the latest reversal comes as Cruz is seriously threatening Trump’s lead in Iowa and elsewhere — especially with evangelical voters critical to winning the Hawkeye State’s caucuses on Feb. 1.

Playing the birther card may play to the far right that seems to be excited about Trump but I doubt that it will help him gain wider support that will be crucial if he is to succeed.


  1. kittycatkin

     /  7th January 2016

    ‘Birther’ ? Ouch. Next we’ll be hearing about people ‘deathing’.

  2. Pythagoras

     /  7th January 2016

    I’ve been wondering why Trump is so popular. A plausible explanation, suggesting it has to do with level of education, is here:

    Some excerpts:

    Regardless of what one thinks of Donald Trump’s fitness to be president, his caustic derision of immigrants and his cynical exploitation of racial tensions within the U.S. electorate, it is essential that we understand who those supporters are and why his message is so appealing to them.

    What is motivating Trump’s supporters is an overpowering sense of resentment against a world that has passed them by, a world dominated by highly educated elites who dismiss them and their values, and who, far from offering them a hand up, keep them pinned to a demeaning position, elites who flaunt their success at the very same time they are denying this group access to success. I am describing a world in which, for many people, what has been lost is not just the means of making a decent living, but something far more important to them: their self-respect. Poverty can be lived with. The perception that one is despised by the group one is entitled to belong to is something else altogether.

    The people who support Trump are not dumb and they are not oblivious to their own interests. They are very, very angry. Some may be racists, just as there are racists among the well-educated, but many who are not see President Obama as a professor from an elite university lecturing them, just like all the other professors and high-paid experts and opinion makers in expensive suits telling them they are going to take away the coal miners’ last hope of a job, the independent ranchers’ right to graze their cattle on public lands, the wildcatters’ one chance in a lifetime to make his fortune in the oil fields. They see the elites’ facts being used as weapons to take away their jobs, their independence, their right to hunt.

  3. @ Pythagorus – good post and link, thanks. I like, one of the few thorough and impartial reportage-and-commentary spots I’ve seen lately –

    I perceive some distinct similarities here to Sheldon Wolin’s “Inverted Totalitarianism” theory –

    – except the horrible irony is that if Trump actually supports America’s continued growth as ‘Superpower’ – which is probably unavoidable due to the military-industrial elite – the people who support Trump will actually be agreeing to increase their own servitude?

    Trump doesn’t stand a chance, just like Obama didn’t, and nor does any other candidate. Whoever gets the Office of President will simply serve those forces.

    He knows which cards to play though. He’s a high stakes gambler.
    Puts our Winston Peters to shame.

    • kiwi guy

       /  7th January 2016

      “good post and link, thanks. I like, one of the few thorough and impartial reportage-and-commentary spots”

      Huff is hardcore Progressive, nothing impartial about it – just look at its track record on Feminist rape culture hoaxes.

      • @ KG – thanks for your clarity on that. Much appreciated.

        If they are hardcore Progressive by your standards I reckon they must be pretty impartial.

        But, to be realistic, it is arguably impossible for anyone to be truly unbiased.

        • kiwi guy

           /  7th January 2016

          You spout crazy progressive nonsense on here PartisanZ, you lot are completely out of touch, and you still can’t figure out why Labour and the Left crashes and burns at election time.

          • I don’t have the slightest interest in figuring it out KG. I don’t give a shit if they crash and burn. Beware the Phoenix though!

            I’ve got Winston Peters on my side. He’s my MP.

    • kittycatkin

       /  8th January 2016

      Oh, poor PZ. I am sorry to hear that !

      Winston Peters is a Claytons Donald Trump.

  4. kittycatkin

     /  7th January 2016

    He seems to forget that his country, like ours, is populated by boat people. If the regime had been what he wants it to be when his ancestors sailed in, he wouldn’t be there today. Silly ass.

    • kiwi guy

       /  7th January 2016

      No, NZ and the USA are not populated by boat people – where is your evidence for this?

      NZ and the USA developed from British colonies. How do you get it into your small mind that therefore Third Worlders can flood the West?

      • @ KG – Eh? Oh, no, you’re not Eh? are you?

        You’re not quibbling about the use of the term “boat people” are you?
        Surely such pathetic, petty niggle is below you?

        These British colonies developed from Western voyages of discovery – which happened in boats – and subsequent “annexation” or whatever nice name you want to give “invasion” – by boat – of the American continent and Oceanic islands. This is so commonly understood as not to require “evidence”.

        In the case of the Americas this seabourne colonisation – by people in boats – is now widely considered to be the most costly single mortality event in human history – in the form of subjugation, slavery, exploitation, murder, genocide etc – with some estimates ranging up to 100 million lives.

        • kiwi guy

           /  7th January 2016

          You are full of shit.

          Why don’t you go live in some Vibrant country then? Oh yeah thats right they are all shit holes and your lily white butt wouldn’t survive much past sun set over there.

          No, instead you are going to keep your lily white butt right where it is here in a country built by white people because it is nice and comfy for you and where you are given the freedom to cultivate and indulge your Liberal White Guilt.

          • The PG approach –

            “You are full of shit”

            You cannot possibly know how much or little shit I have in me at any given time KG, and since the volume of my faeces is both irrelevant to the topic and none of your business this statement can be wiped out of hand.

            “Why don’t you go and live in a Vibrant country then?”

            I haven’t had a decent job offer from a Vibrant country KG but I’m certainly willing to consider them. Does San Marino qualify as Vibrant? It’s a tiny sovereign nation within the borders of Italy. I guess it must eh? Eh? It’ll no doubt be populated by “spiks” and “wops” and the like, eh? I’m thinking of going there. It has more cars per 1000 people than people.

            “your lily white butt wouldn’t survive much past sun set”

            My lifelong experience of human relations KG is you mostly get back what you give out. This might lead me to draw some conclusions about the nature of human relations in your own life but I won’t. Anyway, it is true you get back what you give out. Evidence right now.

            “…in a country built by white people because it is nice and comfy for you”

            It is nice and comfy, especially when you’re not around KG, but your assertion it was built by white people is highly questionable. I won’t go into that in depth right now. If you really think this you need to brush up on New Zealand history.

            “cultivate and indulge your Liberal White Guilt”

            An understanding of Liberal White Guilt is a very useful thing KG in a post-colonial world. I can understand it without it affecting my life beyond broadening my horizons. You should maybe cultivate your own?


            • kittycatkin

               /  8th January 2016

              NZ is a fairly vibrant country. I wonder if KG knows the meaning of vibrant-probably not. It’s not worth telling him that boat people isn’t meant literally these days, it’s a figure of speech, PZ, he won’t understand. My parents really came here on a boat-a large ship, whose name I forget.

              . A local Asian businessman was once literally a ‘boat person’-he has done well enough to send his children to private schools and owns a house in one of the better Auckland suburbs which he rents out while he lives nearer the business in the Waikato. Not bad for someone who was once one of the boat people whom we used to see on the news ! What an asset to our town and NZ.

            • kittycatkin

               /  8th January 2016

              KG seems not to realise that the natives of a country are only migrants if they go somewhere else. There’s no such thing as a migrant country !

  5. kiwi guy

     /  7th January 2016

    The Establishment HATE Trump and are throwing everything they have at him.

    But their schemes are failing and Trump only increases in popularity.

    He has warned the Hillary Billies if they want to play the “You’re a misogynist!” feminist card, Bills penchant for affairs with and sexual exploitation of young women and Hillary’s collusion to cover it up will be fair game.

    Trump is nailing it!

  6. kiwi guy

     /  7th January 2016

    “This is another Trump sideshow. He must be feeling some pressure.”

    You’ve got nothing Pete, Trumps powerful enemies in the media ( whose propaganda you regurgitate unquestionably ) are throwing everything they have at him and he still goes from strength to strength.

    It is his enemies who have been feeling the burn, lol.

    Oh yeah, Trump up to now hasn’t even begun any serious campaign spending unlike his enemies and he still kicked ass.

    • @ KG – Yep, Think I might just stroll down the Capitol an’ buy me a U.S Presidency. Now, what’ll I need to take with me? Oh yeah, a sea of cash!

      “What is absent is the political, the commitment to finding where the common good lies amidst the welter of well-financed, highly organized, single-minded interests rabidly seeking governmental favors and overwhelming the practices of representative government and public administration by a sea of cash” – Sheldon Wolin, ‘Inverted Totalitarianism’

  7. kiwi guy

     /  7th January 2016

    Here is another excellent zerohedge article:

    Gallup Explains Trump: “A Staggering 75% Of Americans Believe In Widespread Government Corruption”

    Back in July, when the HuffPo was covering Donald Trump’s campaign in its “Entertainment Section” (they are not laughing now), and when not a single political pundit thought Trump had any chance of winning the GOP primary (now most of them do), we said that “Donald Trump’s Soaring Popularity “Is The Country’s Collective Middle Finger To Washington.”

    • 1) There is no such thing as an excellent zerohedge article KG.

      “75% Of Americans Believe In Widespread Government Corruption”

      2) So, ummm, by becoming President, Donald Trump is going to change this, right?

      The consolation for those same people, his supporters, is they will be able to give DT the middle finger once he’s elected and he’s in Washington being corrupt too.

      Good system!

      • He’s gonna change it by buying the U.S. Presidency!!!

        And his “anti government corruption” supporters can’t see the ultimate irony in this?

        Things are worse than one can possibly imagine KG.

        But look, if you like him so much, please go and live there. Or do you already? Eh?

  8. Patzcuaro

     /  7th January 2016

    Is this one of the downsides of a written constitution?

    Section 1 of Article Two of the United States Constitution sets forth the eligibility requirements for serving as president of the United States, under clause 5:

    No Person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President; neither shall any Person be eligible to that Office who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty-five Years, and been fourteen Years a Resident within the United States.

    None of the Citizens at the time the Constitution are still about to run for President.

    They seemed to have covered all the bases that existed when the constitution was written but not allowed for the passage of time.

    As it stands a baby that arrives in the USA with it’s immigrant periods can never be President.

    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  8th January 2016

      What have they got against Caesarian births? I imagine most immigrant children are natural born.

      • kittycatkin

         /  8th January 2016

        I wonder if they mean born to those parents rather than adopted from somewhere else. Or maybe it’s just put in for euphony.

        It would seem that a naturalised citizen can be president as long as they have been one for fourteen years, no matter where they were actually born. That’s how I interpret that.

  9. Patzcuaro

     /  7th January 2016

    Immigrant parents

    • Nelly Smickers

       /  7th January 2016

      Thank goodness for clarifying that Patzcuaro…….I felt a bout of PMS coming on the moment I read it 😦

  10. Brown

     /  8th January 2016

    I tend to think KG has a better handle on this shambles than the rest. Anything that makes the political elites nervous is probably good.

    All that the US president needs to be is a mature American. That they set some criteria around that seems unremarkable. I do object to the president’s records being kept secret – Obama isn’t the only one to do that but he’s the first where real concerns have been raised about birth right that the college records would probably clear up.

    Trump isn’t buying anything – he’s outside the existing political class and will win or lose based on whether people are smart / dumb enough to vote for him. That seems preferable to the dodgy double voting or not being allowed to vote that has raised its ugly head the last couple of election cycles. The US elections seem pretty corrupt to me and I’m not surprised the middle class are sick of it.

    • “The US elections seem pretty corrupt to me and I’m not surprised the middle class are sick of it.”

      I think that’s a major problem in the US, their democracy is discredited and dominated by money.

      Trump probably isn’t seen as much better by most who support him, just less bad.

      That’s probably why Sarah whats-her-name got quite a bit of support in 2011, she wasn’t part of the Washington establishment.

  11. kittycatkin

     /  8th January 2016

    American friends are dying of shame at the thought that DT is being broadcast around the world and making their country look ridiculous.

    • Blazer

       /  8th January 2016

      wonder why …they tolerated a real luminary like George W.Bush…imo Trump towers over him as far as intellect goes.