"A question that everyone here should ask …"
"Are you Canadian?"
An exchange between Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and an unidentified Donald Trump supporter in Indiana.
Calgary-born Ted Cruz has suspended his race for the Republican Party nomination for president of the United States. Cruz didn't get a single delegate in the Indiana primary last night.
Cruz had one basic path to the nomination: if Donald Trump didn't get to 1,237 delegates. The Trump victory in Indiana made that much more difficult.
Cruz finished the race with 564 delegates, a clear second-place finish.
The voters of the remaining primaries could all vote for Cruz, resulting in a contested convention in Cleveland in July. But Cruz's lack of momentum and his desperate actions weren't part of a winning strategy. Carly Fiorina wasn't going to help much.
We have poked fun as have many others about Cruz's Canadian history and background, but we had doubts that Cruz was eligible to run for U.S. president. When Trump brought up Cruz's background, you saw the MSM explore that concern. When Trump stopped talking about whether Cruz was a natural-born citizen, the MSM forgot the issue. If Cruz had run a better race, the topic might have come back up in the American political discussion.
We also wondered about whether Cruz was eligible to run based on Cuban citizenship. His argument for being an American citizen (not necessarily natural-born) also applied to be a Cuban citizen. Cruz infamously claimed he didn't know he was a Canadian citizen until the Dallas Morning News wrote stories on the issue in 2013. Cruz officially renounced his Canadian citizenship in 2014.
Cruz has argued before the Supreme Court of the United States, but he should an amazing lack of knowledge on the issue.
Politics aside, the Canadian connection for Cruz was a negative for Canada. Cruz showed no interest in Canada during the campaign, a disturbing concern given the strong relationship between Canada and the United States. Trump is not a NAFTA fan but that concern so far has been about Mexico, not Canada.
True, no GOP contender has expressed any concern for or against Canada. Jeb Bush said he wanted a better relationship with Canada but that before he was a candidate. Scott Walker talked about the advantages of building a wall with Canada, but that was laughed off quickly for the obvious lack of viability. Walker soon after disappeared from the race.
Bernie Sanders has talked about how programs such as universal health care have worked well in Canada. Sanders isn't a NAFTA fan, but hasn't mentioned Canada on that issue. Hillary Clinton has shown love for Canada over time. Interestingly, Clinton has been blamed for NAFTA because her husband, Bill Clinton, signed the deal. While Bill Clinton was a NAFTA supporter, the groundwork for the deal was laid by George H.W. Bush and Brian Mulroney, a fact that has disappeared from the mainstream knowledge of American politics.
If Clinton and Trump are indeed the U.S. party nominations, hopefully, they will get a chance to weigh in on the United States largest trading partner and the country where the U.S. gets more oil than any other country. If the 2016 election is anything like recent U.S. election cycles, Canada will hardly come up. John McCain and Mitt Romney had a positive reaction to Canada. We are genuinely curious for any journalist to ask Trump about what he knows about Canada.
screen grab: MSNBC