N.Y. Court Throws Out|Ted Cruz ‘Birther’ Suit

     ALBANY, N.Y. (CN) – A petition to disqualify Sen. Ted Cruz from inclusion on the Republican presidential primary ballot in New York failed on numerous technical grounds, a state supreme court justice ruled Monday.
     The ruling by Justice David Weinstein ended a “birther” challenge to Cruz’s right to seek the presidency filed by two registered voters in New York.
     The senator, whose full given name is Rafael Edward Cruz, was born in Alberta, Canada to a mother who was a U.S. citizen who happened to be living there at the time. His father is a native of Cuba.
     In 2014 he renounced his Canadian citizenship after similar complaints about his eligibility for U.S. presidency cropped up.
     On March 7, Weinstein said the petition filed by Barry Korman and William Gallo was deficient in a number of ways, not the least of which was the fact they had a three-day window to file an objection after Cruz submitted his official candidacy paperwork to the New York Board of Elections.
     Instead, they took almost three weeks.
     “I see no legal doctrine among those advanced by petitioners which would allow me to dispense with such requirements in this case,” Weinstein wrote, noting that none of the voters’ arguments “can get them around the immovable object standing in the way of this petition: their failure to have filed objections within the statutory deadline.”
     Cruz announced his candidacy for president in March 2015, and he filed paperwork to get on the ballot in New York on Jan. 10, 2016.
     Korman and Gallo, contended Cruz is not eligible to run for president based on Article II of the U.S. Constitution, which that specifies only naturally born citizens can run for president.
     After the board of elections objected to the pair’s initial petition, they filed an amended petition on Feb. 17.
     Both Cruz and the board of elections argued that the petitions were untimely and that because it was a “political question” it should be resolved by the political branches of government, not by the courts.
     Korman and Gallo argued the court had discretion to waive the three-day deadline to file candidacy objections. They also claimed the board had posted the dates of Democratic candidates’ submissions online, but kept similar information for Republican candidates only on paper. They also contended that Cruz’s paperwork technically hadn’t been registered online by the board until Feb. 24.
     Weinstein dismissed the idea that the court could waive the three-day deadline, adding that the board’s website listed the same default date for all Republican candidates and that the paperwork clearly states Cruz filed in New York in late January.
     “Even assuming that the February 24 date is anything but a website error, it has no meaning, as the time for submissions cannot be extended, nor are petitioners entitled to a second bite at the apple once the initial three-day period has expired,” Weinstein wrote.
     The New York Republican presidential primary takes place on April 19.

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