Lion of the Blogosphere

Birther lawsuit prediction

It has been reported that an 85-year-old lawyer in Texas “has filed a complaint Thursday in U.S. District Court in Texas asking for a judgment concerning whether Mr. Cruz can run or serve as president.”

I predict that the lawsuit will be dismissed because he has no standing (an outcome which is mentioned in the WSJ blog post, making it a much better source of news than most other sources which just sensationally report that a lawsuit was filed; however I assure you that I made this same prediction before reading the WSJ blog post).

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

January 16, 2016 at 11:41 am

Posted in Law, Politics

34 Responses

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  1. Here’s what I don’t get about these birther issues, both now with Cruz and with Obama . . .

    Why do we even allow someone to be a candidate if there hasn’t been some vetting of their standing? I’m sure there is a paperwork side to be allowed to be a candidate. When you submit your application to be a candidate, it should have to be accompanied by any required documents to prove you are eligible to hold the office.

    Why is this any different than when i applied for my professional licensing and i had to submit official transcripts of my engineering degrees?

    Sol R

    January 16, 2016 at 12:00 pm

    • The only requirements are age and “natural born citizen” (You can be an uneducated criminal and that is allowed.)

      This was rarely an issue before. In the past, someone with such shallow roots in America would have been unthinkable as a presidential candidate.


      January 16, 2016 at 1:16 pm

    • The Congressional Research Service said he was eligible.

      Cruz is really the first questionable case. There was never any evidence to back up the Obama Kenya birth story and McCain’s Panama Canal Zone birth (to two US citizens) would only be an issue for the strictest interpretations.

      Because of that there’s no process in place. The only options are let it slide or take the fight to the SCOTUS.


      January 16, 2016 at 1:17 pm

      • What about Chester Arthur?

        Lion of the Blogosphere

        January 16, 2016 at 1:56 pm

      • Or Barry Goldwater?

        bob sykes

        January 16, 2016 at 7:52 pm

      • The Panama Canel Zone was part of the United States.


        January 17, 2016 at 1:44 am

    • Forget about submitting documents, both Obama’s and Cruz’s records are sealed. Everything in modern government is a charade.


      January 17, 2016 at 6:10 pm

  2. Interesting. But if the case fails on the standing issue, who then would have proper standing?

    Black Death

    January 16, 2016 at 12:40 pm

    • If Cruz wins the nomination, the Democratic candidate should theoretically have standing.

      Mike Street Station

      January 16, 2016 at 2:18 pm

      • I’d say theoretically congress could write legislation to clarify what a natural born citizen is, and then a future candidate who doesn’t meet the requirements would have to challenge it in order to get it ruled by the Supreme Court.

        We’d need a very Trump-ian congress to write the “two american citizens, born in the US” law though. So I’m not sure how realistic that is.


        January 17, 2016 at 1:56 pm

    • Someone with more than a generalized interest. Which would be nobody. An interest in electing a natural born president is by its nature entirely general. This is why this particular reading of standing needs to be revisited by the courts IMHO. Maybe Lion can think of an example of someone other than Cruz with more than a generalized interest, perhaps a board member or the chair of the RNC or perhaps a state Republican Party chair or perhaps a state elections secretary? But, beyond those ‘possible’ parties, nobody comes to mind.


      January 16, 2016 at 2:29 pm

      • Perhaps if a state brought suit.

        Lion of the Blogosphere

        January 16, 2016 at 2:50 pm

      • Maybe an Elector would have standing?

        George C Wallace

        January 16, 2016 at 4:14 pm

      • Oh tons of people could theoretically have standing depending on at what stage the election is in. Someone associated with the RNC or the Iowa/New Hampshire Secretary of State’s office could sue claiming they don’t know if Cruz should be permitted on the ballot. The general election Democrat could sue on the grounds he is not a legitimate rival and shouldn’t be on the ballot anywhere, and any state’s secretary of state’s office could agree. People involved with organizing the debates could use. The office Chief Justice Roberts could sue claiming he doesn’t know if Cruz is eligible to be inaugurated.

        The real problem is no one with standing either believes Cruz is ineligible or wants to make a national spectacle of themselves. Trump was right when he said Cruz himself should just get a declaratory judgment. Cruz or no Cruz, this is a matter worth getting settled.


        January 16, 2016 at 10:23 pm

      • Cruz is the one “with standing”, meaning he should be the one who has to sue. As the RNC nominates a candidate, they can refuse to nominate him based on natural born grounds, and Cruz would have to sue them.

        That’s a pipe dream though, I guess.


        January 17, 2016 at 1:59 pm

    • The courts have no Constitutional authority over the process because the Twelfth Amendment designates the Congress in joint session as the body that counts and judges electoral votes. Congress therefore can make a judgement. The courts cannot just as they cannot judge an impeachment.

      Not that that will stop the imperial judiciary that loves to make power grabs with little or no justification.


      January 16, 2016 at 6:58 pm

      • Well, the twelfth amendment argument hasn’t been addressed because these cases have been dispensed with on procedural grounds, no standing. But, if a plaintiff were to get past the standing hurdle they might be defeated with the twelfth amendment argument. But, this just moves the discussion to another court, Congress. I find this argument unpersuasive because the author, a Yale law professor, imagines that federal statutes should control. Yet a lesser law, a statute, may not impair a higher law, constitution, and should Congress determine that ‘natural born’ means born on land subject to US sovereignty, I have a hard time imagining that they could recognize his electoral votes unless they view their past actions as the equivalent of rendering a binding determination as a body. But even under that scenario they find themselves up against the legal maxim that current legislatures cannot bind future legislatures.


        January 16, 2016 at 10:46 pm

  3. Ted Cruz = A condescending snob, who refused to studied with any student at Harvard Law, who graduated from the lesser Ivies like Columbia.

    And many proles think this elitist has his heart with them!!!


    January 16, 2016 at 12:40 pm

    • And Donald Trump isn’t the same sort of elitist?

      He says he’ll do a few things that might help the working class, and he’s not as bad as the other Republicans on economic issues, but…


      January 16, 2016 at 7:43 pm

      • The bottom line is that proles are dumb!

        And many proles in NYC are not happy (NYC has high income inequality and pesky NAMs,) yet they continue to remain in their perpetual state of misery by staying there. Perhaps voting for a man like Cruz, who decries NY social values, offers a sign of relief!


        January 17, 2016 at 3:49 pm

  4. Why doesn’t any American voter have “standing”?


    January 16, 2016 at 12:44 pm

    • America doesn’t have popular elections for president. There is no reason American voters would have any kind of standing to question qualifications for an office they can’t vote for.

      Now if you want to question whether your state’s electors are federal employees or not (the only qualification for the Electoral College), you might have standing.


      January 16, 2016 at 7:05 pm

      • If I am voting for an elector who is pledged to vote for a candidate, that should give me standing in a lawsuit over whether or not the candidate is qualified.


        January 17, 2016 at 4:40 pm

  5. You’ve touched on a pet peeve of mine, the explosion of only barely accountable (to the electorate) political decision making bodies combined with an increase in deference granted ‘agency’ interpretations of laws combined with an explosion of administrative review bodies (making it harder to get to court) combined with no corresponding expansion of the notion of standing so that challenges to ultra-vires actions by agencies and executives rarely results in a hearing on the merits. And when there is a hearing on the merits, decisions often end at the lower court level so there is a dearth of published precedent on all kinds of important delegation of authority type questions. This is an important issue relating to the operation of our government. Members of the public should have a means to secure a decision on the merits on critical questions relating to the proper interpretation of statutes.


    January 16, 2016 at 1:31 pm

  6. Yes as I have pointed out before on this topic if you familiarize yourself with the results of the Obama law suits, no one is even given standing to bring such a suit and they get dismissed.

    Thats why it is ridiculous for you to fall for this nonsense.

    Lion of the Turambar

    January 16, 2016 at 1:45 pm

  7. The courts will confirm that ordinary citizens have no standing and elections don’t matter. I get that feeling every time I vote.


    January 16, 2016 at 2:32 pm

  8. Laurence Tribe has suggest that a state’s Secretary of State could refuse to put Cruz on their state ballot for the general election on the grounds that Cruz is not eligible. Then Cruz would have standing to sue.

    Andrew E.

    January 16, 2016 at 2:33 pm

    • Yes! That’s absolutely true. Will any state have the guts to do that?

      Lion of the Blogosphere

      January 16, 2016 at 2:51 pm

      • New York should do it just for the laughs.


        January 16, 2016 at 6:17 pm

      • They ought to. I doubt they will.


        January 16, 2016 at 7:44 pm

    • Yup, this is what I’ve been saying. Its Cruz’s issue to sue on, someone else has to enforce their interpretation of the law first.


      January 17, 2016 at 2:02 pm

      • Out of 50 states, not one is pulling him off the ballot because of his lack of natural-born citizenship.

        Lion of the Blogosphere

        January 17, 2016 at 3:13 pm

      • a clever liberal Secretary of State could sandbag that, and do it during the General Election.


        January 17, 2016 at 7:22 pm

  9. OT – This is a weird story. Think the attorney wanted to help his daughter’s career?


    January 16, 2016 at 7:32 pm

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