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RUSH: Well, we’re getting closer to the day that actual votes are going to happen, which is why all of this kerfuffle is effervescing up and boiling over. I mean, the nonsense on whether or not Ted Cruz is a natural born citizen. It’s stunning.

Greetings, folks. Great to have you here on the Rush Limbaugh program and the EIB Network. The telephone number if you want to be on the program is 800-282-2882. The e-mail address, ElRushbo@eibnet.com.

The latest to join this bandwagon suggesting that Ted Cruz may want to actually go to court and get some confirmation on the fact he’s a citizen, it could be a problem out there, John McCain. John McCain is now officially questioning Ted Cruz’s eligibility to run for the presidency. It’s getting into bizarro territory here. Remember, now, McCain was born in Panama, and his presidential eligibility is the same and based on the same constitutionality as is Ted Cruz’s. It’s amazing.

Folks, I left the program yesterday, and this was the subject we were laughing about, the way Trump was talking about it and raising the issue but not opining on it. And because the Republican establishment is scared to death of either one of them winning, the gears got into full motion and people started investigating this constitutionally, intellectually. You would not believe, one website probably has 75,000 words written on this. And the 75,000 words include the learned opinions of countless other scholars on whether or not Ted Cruz is actually an American citizen.

Just a couple stories that tell you what’s going on. “Fearing Trump and Cruz, Republicans look to Rubio.” That’s in TheHill.com. Over here Politico: “Trump and Cruz Send Shivers Down GOP Spines.” They are turning to Rubio as their last great hope in the establishment.

Anyway, the eligibility question is an interesting political development because it is gonna be explored, it is gonna be a distraction. The Democrats are gonna milk it for all it’s worth because of what happened to Obama and the birthers. And despite the fact that there’s no similarity or commonality in the two claims, they’re still gonna rely on the low-information voters’ ignorance of this and act like, “Hey, this is fun. You know, you guys did it to Obama, we got a chance to do it to you,” so that’s why they’re gonna get in on it.

The others are gonna get in on it because Cruz is leading in Iowa, and Cruz is gaining traction in other states. So is Chris Christie in some places, and Trump is holding steady, depending on the poll, 39, 41, and so forth. But all of this is gonna change when there are actual votes, when the Hawkeye Cauci actually happens on February 1st, then all of this goes out the window and brand-new paradigms are created.

Let me give you a couple scenarios, just hypotheticals, just for the fun of it. Hawkeye Cauci. Let’s say that the advance polling data is right and Ted Cruz wins. Okay, no surprise there, but this isn’t polling data anymore. This is actual results of Iowans who’ve braved whatever elements there were to go out to their various community centers, get together, chat about it, and caucus. And it was all over, Ted Cruz wins. Even though it’s expected, it still is real. And another aspect of the reality is that Trump does not win.

Now, I don’t care what people think, that is going to change the entire paradigm, once you go from polling data to reality. Look at Howard Dean. It’s not exactly identical, ’cause Howard Dean was leading going into Iowa in, I think it was 2004. Aand Howard Dean was presumed, I mean, he was kicking butt all over the Democrat Party. He loses Iowa, and the shock was so great, not only to him, but everybody else. That was it, one thing out of expectations, one thing that did not happen that was expected to happen, and he’s finished. And it was after that that he went nuts on TV and started, “Aaarrrgggh!” as he attempted to fire his troops up for New Hampshire. But it was over for Howard Dean.

Now, it won’t be over for whoever loses Iowa, if Cruz wins, because that’s the expectation. But it’s still gonna be a real defeat, not a polling defeat. So you’re gonna have the Republican establishment go into gear with different energy levels and different areas of focus, because they’re gonna be inspired, motivated by Cruz winning, which is gonna scare the heck out of ’em, and Trump losing, which is gonna just make ’em happier than they can imagine being. So they’re gonna want to head Cruz off at the path in New Hampshire and make sure that Trump does not recover.

So we move on to New Hampshire. Let’s say that somebody besides Trump wins New Hampshire in our little hypothetical here. Well, now you’ve got a paradigm that really is going to switch because here you have Trump, who has been leading in every one of these national polls, and it isn’t even close. He’s at 39 — what is it today? He’s at 41.7 in the Reuters rolling presidential poll that they’re taking, Trump at 41.7%. You got Cruz at 13.7. Carson at 10.6 and Rubio at 8.2 and the rest of them are underneath that and don’t even merit mention. Hypothetically, let’s say Trump does not win New Hampshire, either, there’s two where the de facto favorite, where many people are now writing it’s over, that Trump is the nominee. I mean, you have this being written in the Drive-By Media, the Washington Post, you got it written in conservative media, you’ve got it written in — well, everywhere. Examples of all kinds of media, there are people who are thinking that it’s all over.

Well, what happens if Trump loses both? It’s gonna change the dynamic like you can’t imagine. Even though there are many more states to go, still have South Carolina and the SEC primary where Trump does well. Guarantee you, when people start winning Iowa and New Hampshire, it boosts them. It does not boost the people that lose. Now, Clinton lost both of them, just to show you, and he ended up winning the nomination later in later states. That’s why he’s called the comeback kid.

I think Clinton lost New Hampshire back in 1992. I have to double-check that. But Clinton was not taken seriously until April or May of 1992. George H.W. Bush wasn’t even paying him any attention. Nobody thought Bill Clinton had a prayer! In fact, Clinton probably didn’t think he had a prayer. Clinton entered 1992 setting the stage for later, and he ended up winning the thing. So nobody knows what’s gonna happen. But when the actual votes begin to happen and there are actual results, then it changes everything. The winners get boosted. The losers have questions raised about them.

Expectations are reexamined. It just changes everything. That’s why all of this right now is nothing more than academic at the time and to the extent that they can tell us what happens. So we have this pursuit of Cruz now on this citizenship, which is folly. It’s utter folly. But it’s a chance for people to demonstrate their education and their intellectual prowess and their understanding of the Constitution. And it’s serious. I don’t mean to relegate it to the unserious. But nothing’s gonna happen. I mean, Cruz is not gonna end up being proclaimed not a citizen. It could well be that this derails his campaign.

I’m not saying that won’t happen, but they’re not gonna succeed in going into court and have Ted Cruz told by a court, “Hey, Mr. Cruz, we’ve just discovered you’re not a citizen. Leave the country! Turn in your passport and go back to Canada.” It isn’t gonna happen. But that doesn’t have to happen. All they have to do is start raising doubts and distract Cruz and make him talk about it all the time. He’s handling it very well right now about joking about it in terms of how Trump is approaching the issue and so forth. So I don’t mean to say it isn’t serious, and I’m trying to sound condescending to people taking it seriously.

But it’s an opportunity for a lot of people to show their chops, demo their chops on the Constitution. I mean, here’s what this really is all about. It’s right out of the Constitution. It is very, very simple. It’s Article 2, Section 1. “No person except a natural born citizen…” I’m telling you, I went to a blog site, and there’s a 75,000-word article on “natural born citizen,” what it means. I thought, “You know what? I could print that out, I could read that whole piece, and it’d be my program today. I could take the day off; just read that piece. At the end of that you’d think I’m nuts or brilliant.”

But 75,000 words! That’s a wild guess. But it printed out to 20 pages. “No person except a natural born citizen or a citizen of it United States, at the time of the adoption of the 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 35 years, and been 14 years a resident within the United States.” There’s nothing else. You can have an IQ of 20. You can be dumb, stupid. You can be poor, you can be uneducated. None of that matters. You just have to be a natural born citizen, gotta be 35 years old, and you have to have lived within the United States for 14 years.

That’s it. So when people raise the question, “‘Natural born citizen’? What’s that mean?” ‘Cause it doesn’t appear anywhere else in the Constitution. It’s not defined. The founders do not define what natural born citizen is, which means that back in the day they wrote it… It’s why original intent’s so important, folks, when you analyze the Constitution. “What did they mean? What did ‘natural born citizen’ mean at the time they wrote it?” It’s a derivative from British common law which meant natural born subject. And, I’m telling you, this… Andy McCarthy writes about this today, and he’s right.

This whole notion of natural born citizen honestly, folks, has been the subject of political controversy for over 100 years. It dates back to Chester Arthur, who the Democrats at the time alleged was born in Canada, not Vermont. McCain, Barack Hussein O, George Romney, have all had their eligibility questioned, as have Rubio, Bobby Jindal, and Ted Cruz. They are the subject of this constitutional debate today with the focus now lately on Cruz. But the term “natural born citizen” is not defined in the Constitution.

It is not explained in the writings or the history of those who framed the Constitution, nor is it in a demonstrable common and clear understanding in the former British colonies at the time, and the Supreme Court has never ruled on it and probably never will. “Natural born” is not used anywhere in the Constitution. Its origins are unclear. It is assumed to be derived, as I say, from the British common stature law governing natural born subjects. And therein provides the wide opening for everybody to mad dash into and define it themselves as to their particular benefit.

There are essentially two ends of the spectrum here about which everybody agrees, in terms of the meaning of “natural born citizen.” 1. A person born in the United States to parents, both whom are United States citizens. Obviously, you’re natural born. You’re born here. Your parents are citizens. Bammo, you’re a citizen. Nobody questions it, and you’re natural born. By the way, if you Planned Parenthood aficionados are listening, it has nothing to do with artificial wombs and all that. That’s not what “natural born” means. We can rule that out right now. We’re not talking about test tubes here.

Although we might somewhere down the road. You never know. And the other end of the spectrum is a person born outside the United States to parents, neither of who is a United States citizen, is not a natural born citizen. Nobody disagrees with that. Even if citizenship is obtained through naturalization later, that is not natural born citizen. So if you’re a naturalized citizen — born somewhere else, your parents are not Americans — and if you come here and become a citizen? “Sorry, you’re not qualified. Too bad.”

Now, Rubio, Jindal, and Cruz, as did Obama, fall between these two points on the spectrum here. Rubio and Jindal born in the US to parents neither of whom was a citizen at the time that he was born here. So, bammo. Ted Cruz was born in Canada to parents, one of whom (his mother) was a US citizen, and as far as the best minds have worked on this, that alone qualifies Cruz. Now, Trump months ago… We had the audio sound bite yesterday. Months ago, Trump said of Cruz, “Ah, it’s not about that.”

Trump says, “Cruz is perfectly fine. It’s not a problem here. I looked into it; we have no problem with Cruz.” Now, yesterday Cruz becomes the focus point of Trump. “Weeeeell, I don’t know. I might be a little nervous. He might want to get clarification.” That’s all it took to get the media revved up and create this distraction now that is designed to distract Cruz, raise doubts, weaken support, all of these things. It’s ’cause Cruz is the front-runner now in the Hawkeye Cauci.


RUSH: This is Dan in Cocoa, Florida, as we move back to the phones. Hi, Dan. Glad you called. I appreciate you waiting. Hello.

CALLER: Dittos, Rush.

RUSH: Hey.

CALLER: My comment is that our famed senator from Arizona, John McCain, I don’t remember him ever questioning Obama’s right or ability to run for president.

RUSH: Yeah, I think you’re right. In fact, it’s worse than that. You remember, McCain had a rally somewhere in Ohio. It was Cincinnati. And he had somebody introduce him, and in talking about Obama, called him Barack Hussein Obama. And McCain fired that guy. McCain publicly went out and threw that guy who had introduced him, warmed up the crowd for him, threw him overboard. (imitating McCain) “We don’t talk about President Obama that way, Senator Obama, Hussein, that’s prejudice, you don’t do it here.” You’re right. I don’t remember him ever questioning Obama’s citizenship. But here he is joining the fray on Cruz. Doesn’t surprise you, does it?

CALLER: One other comment, if I could.

RUSH: Sure. Go ahead.

CALLER: You know, they talked about the Christian country used to abandoned the slavery in 1864. I don’t think the Muslim countries have ever abandoned slavery.

RUSH: Yes, you could make that case if you wanted to talk about women, yes. Interesting. Still, McCain has joined the fray here on Cruz and his citizenship. McCain is, “Yes, I think it’s a problem, I think he should maybe call lawyer.” But he never said that about Obama that I can recall? Do you? I don’t recall Obama being questioned whatsoever by McCain in practically any aspect.


RUSH: I got a couple e-mails, I checked them during the break. Some of you think that I’m not taking this seriously. I don’t want you think that. That’s not the case. But I don’t think it also is… I know fully well what’s going on here. I remember back when the whole Clarence Thomas, Anita Hill thing hit. We were in the middle of the confirmation hearings for Clarence Thomas, and I was in Oklahoma City. It was Saturday, during a Rush to Excellence performance that night at a giant arena in Oklahoma City.

That afternoon is when Anita Hill had come forward with all of these allegations, and I can’t tell you how livid I was. I just was burning up, and I spent the entire afternoon… This wasn’t… It wasn’t as easy. You didn’t Google anything back then. I mean, it was difficult to… Well, not difficult. It was much different the way you gathered information back then, and I broomed 90% of what I had planned. I spent the whole hour and a half, two hours talking about that. It burned me up. Now, I know that many of you supporters of Cruz probably think that this is similar and has you just as angry as I was during that circumstance.

That had a real, real chance of destroying Clarence Thomas’s life — and, of course, defeating the nomination, ’cause these were his confirmation hearings, and this was occurring under the auspices of the Senate Judiciary Committee. And by virtue of that, it was given automatic weight and credibility. And it was a lynching. It was. There’s no question that Clarence Thomas was right; it was “a high-tech lynching” that they launched at the very… Not the very end, but close to the end of it, because Clarence was gonna get confirmed. And they just couldn’t abide it.

This was Thurgood Marshall’s seat, and nobody had a right to be in it who wasn’t a doctrinaire, left-wing liberal extraordinaire African-American. Clarence Thomas, a conservative? No way. And they just launched every lie in the book. Now, this, with Cruz and his citizenship, you could say that it has many of the same ingredients. Here we are with Cruz leading three weeks out from the Iowa caucus, and we’ve had the issue already been part of the political fabric with Obama and so forth. What’s interesting about this to me (in addition to all these other things) is note that nobody, apparently, knows how to, wants to, or can go after Ted Cruz on substance.

I don’t care whether it’s Trump or anybody else. They’re not going after Ted Cruz on the substance of his beliefs, his policies, his conservatism. I mean, you have people who, in a blanket, generalized way, they attack conservatives as an alien life form. But the specifics of Cruz and his proposals? You have people who have attempted… I mean, this is all over the blogosphere yesterday. There were people attempting to say that Ted Cruz had caved in his opposition to ethanol, and he had not. He had not said one thing different. But because of the way it was reported, people who know better — people in the conservative blogosphere, people conservative media who know full well how the media does things — fell for a misleading headline and lead in the story.

“Oh, no, Ted Cruz has caved! Oh, my God,” and they think nothing is sacred.

Now, one thing about conservatives, they are waiting for whoever it is they trust to turn on them. It’s one of these things they fear and expect, and so all it took was a misreported headline and lead, people were made to believe that Cruz had caved on ethanol, which he hadn’t. He said one thing different. He might have been a little too cute in an answer to a question, but the substance was that he wants it phased out, the ethanol subsidies and mandatory usage, phased out by 2022, five years, essentially. But he answered in a different way, which allowed people to write that he had caved on it.

But aside from that, nobody’s going after Cruz on substance. The way they’re now going after Cruz, “Oh, he’s not qualified, he’s not eligible.” And of course it’s gonna have legs, and I’ll tell you something else. If Cruz wins, folks, if he wins the nomination, if he’s elected president, this is not gonna go away. There will be lawsuits filed. There were lawsuits filed against Obama, lawsuits filed against government officials all the time. It isn’t going to go away. And Cruz knows it.

The worst thing Cruz could do is deal with this head on in such a way that he’s really bothered by it, make it look like there might be something there and then be distracted by it. The way he’s dealing with this is right on, treating it as a joke, Trump’s jumped the shark, this guy is saying — not make the mistake of not taking it seriously, but don’t allow it to bring everything to a screeching halt, and don’t ask righteously indignant and offended over it. This is what happens in politics.

And it’s for that reason that, to me, it’s part and parcel — it was gonna be something. Somebody was gonna do something to go after Cruz; he’s a front-runner. And it doesn’t surprise me that it’s Trump. Trump does not want to lose in Iowa, and he certainly doesn’t want to lose in New Hampshire. So not taking it seriously in any way, manner, or form. I’m trying to keep it in perspective more than anything else.
RUSH: Donald in Maryland, it’s great to have you on the program. Hello.

CALLER: Thank you so much, Rush, for taking my call. Long-term listener, first-time caller.

RUSH: Great to have you out there, Donald. I appreciate it.

CALLER: My comment — and I think you’ll agree with this, and I’ll be interested to hear your take on it.

RUSH: Yes.

CALLER: The democratic liberal establishment for years has had an arsenal that has been hard to overcome, and that is the federal judiciary. I am very concerned that this situation with Cruz has never been settled in federal court and that the Democrats will use the federal judiciary like they’re using right now with Planned Parenthood and other social issues over the last 35 years.

RUSH: Well, you are thinking that they have the federal courts so packed with politically friendly judges that they could actually find a court that would rule Cruz ineligible?

CALLER: Well, I’m concerned that the fact that we have a congressman that’s a real liberal ideologue in Florida, that is —

RUSH: Let me guess. You’re talking about Alan Grayson?

CALLER: Yes. He’s been making threats since November, and I’m afraid that what they will do is go into court and create a black cloud and that this will drag on, and it will create a problem, actually much like he did for President Obama, and —

RUSH: Well, but see, that’s the thing. With Obama, it didn’t stop him because the political forces you’re talking about were on his side. The lawsuits continued even after Obama was in office. Let me tell people what Grayson’s doing since you bring him up. Alan Grayson is an attorney, he’s a Democrat Senate candidate. He’s wacko, he’s Loony Tunes, he’s been in the House of Representatives, really off the charts, and he’s told US News and World Report that he’s gonna file a lawsuit challenging Cruz’s eligibility if he overtakes Trump and wins the nomination. Only if he wins the nomination, Grayson says, is he gonna do this. And you’re worried that they can find a judge, highly politicized, friendly to Obama and the Democrats, who will say, “Yep, yep, I’m looking at this, and Mr. Cruz, you’re not qualified to run for president.” That’s what you’re worried is gonna happen, after he gets the nomination?

CALLER: — all the time when it comes to the Constitution, in my opinion. And I’m very afraid that what will happen is that the federal judiciary and an Obama appointee but also possibly a Clinton appointee going back 25 years —

RUSH: Yeah.

CALLER: — will use this situation, and that’s been a very powerful arsenal in achieving the liberal agenda over the last 35 or 40 years.

RUSH: Okay, let me ask you a strategic question, Donald. You know that this can happen. I mean, you think you can’t. You’re prepared for it. You have to think that everybody else involved, Cruz, others would be prepared for it. What can be done? If your scenario plays out, what can be done?

CALLER: Well, obviously, as you alluded to a little earlier, Senator Cruz, if he’s successful, he’s gonna have to pursue the nomination while at the same time having to deal with this circumstance. And while I do not like making a comparison to the Obama administration, which I abhor and do not and have a never supported —

RUSH: Right.

CALLER: — he will have to basically do the same thing that the current president did, I’m afraid of.

RUSH: Yeah, here’s the thing, though. I don’t think anybody ever thought that this is gonna go anywhere with Obama, but you’re thinking it could go somewhere with Cruz. That’s the difference. Obama was never, ever going to be found ineligible. It was never gonna happen. Everybody knew it. You’re not sure that that’s the case with Cruz?

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