There was a time when Republican presidential frontrunners Ted Cruz and Donald Trump were good friends who were seriously considering running with each other. At last night’s debate, however, they each showed that those days are long gone…
According to The Blaze, Cruz and Trump battled it out over questions over the former’s eligibility to be president. It all started when GOP debate moderator Neil Cavuto asked Cruz about the issue of where he was born, which Trump has tried to highlight throughout 2016.
“You know, back in September my friend Donald said that he had his lawyers look at this from every which way. And there was no issue there. There was nothing there to this birther issue. Now, since September, the Constitution hasn’t changed. But, the poll numbers have. And I recognize that Donald is dismayed that his poll numbers are falling in Iowa.
“But the facts and the law here are really quite clear. Under longstanding U.S. law, the child of a U.S. citizen born abroad is a natural born citizen. If a soldier has a child abroad that child is a natural born citizen. That’s why John McCain, even though he was born in Panama, was eligible to run for president. If an American missionary has a child abroad that child is a natural born citizen. That’s why George Romney, Mitt’s dad, was eligible to run for president even though he was born in Mexico.”
“At the end of the day, the legal issue is quite straightforward, but I would note that the birther theories, that Donald has been relying on, some of the more extreme ones insist that you must not only be born on U.S. soil, but have two parents born on U.S. soil. Under that theory, not only would I be disqualified, Marco Rubio would be disqualified, Bobby Jindal would be disqualified, an interestingly enough, Donald J. Trump would be disqualified. Because Donald’s mother was born in Scotland. She was naturalized. Now Donald, on the issue of citizenship Donald, I’m not going to use your mother’s birth against you.”
“Because it wouldn’t work,” Trump quipped.
“You are an American, as is everyone on this stage,” Cruz shot back. “I suggest we focus on who is best prepared to be commander in chief. Because that’s the most important question facing the country.”
Trump was then given his full chance to respond.
“NBC and Wall Street Journal just came out with a poll. Headline, ‘Trump way up, Cruz going down,’” Trump said, prompting boos from the audience. “And in Iowa, as you know Ted, in the last three polls, I am beating you. So you shouldn’t misrepresent how well you’re doing with the polls. You don’t have to say that. In fact, I was all for you until you started saying it.”
Trump then claimed that if he won and chose Cruz as his running mate, the Democrats would file a lawsuit against him.
“I already know the Democrats are going to be bringing a suit,” he said. “You have a big lawsuit over your head while you’re running. And if you become the nominee, who the hell knows if you can even serve in office?”
“Why are you raising this issue now?” Cavuto asked.
“Now, he’s doing a little bit better,” Trump bluntly answered. “It’s true!”
Cruz then jumped back in to defend himself from the legal allegations.
“Well, listen. I have spent my entire life defending the U.S. Constitution before the U.S. Supreme Court. And I’ll tell you, I’m not going to be taking legal advice from Donald Trump,” he said.
“You don’t have to! Take it Laurence Tribe! Take it from your professor,” Trump fired back.
“The chances of any litigation proceeding or succeeding on this are zero,” Cruz insisted.
“And I’ll tell you what Donald,” Cruz added. “You very kindly just a moment ago offered me the VP slot. I’ll tell you what, if this all works out I am happy to consider you as VP and if you happen to be right you could get the top job at the end of the day.”
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