Tennessee Dems want eligibility check on presidential ballot

Tennessee Dems want eligibility check on presidential ballot

January 22nd, 2016 by Associated Press in Politics State

Tennessee State Democratic Caucus Senator Jeff Yarbro talks with editors and reporters Thursday, August 13, 2015 at the Chattanooga Times Free Press.

Tennessee State Democratic Caucus Senator Jeff Yarbro talks...

Photo by Associated Press /Times Free Press.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Two Tennessee Democrats want to pass a law to require the state to enforce the U.S. Constitution's "natural born citizen" requirement on this November's presidential ballot.

State Sen. Jeff Yarbro and Rep. Jason Powell, both of Nashville, filed the bill on Thursday that would bar the secretary of state from placing the nominee of either party on the ballot if they fail to meet the constitutional eligibility requirements.

While the Democrats say the legislation isn't aimed at any candidate, Republican U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, who was born to an American mother and Cuban father while they lived in Calgary, is the only presidential hopeful who has had to defend his eligibility to run.

Cruz argues that because his mother is American, he became a U.S. citizen at birth.