Republican presidential candidates Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz are on the Indiana ballot — for now. Two men who challenged the candidates’ eligibility, based on claims that neither man was a “natural-born citizen,” are contemplating possible next legal steps, following the state Election Commission’s decision Friday to put Rubio and Cruz on the May primary ballot. “This needs to go to a higher court,” said Bob Kern, an Indianapolis man who calls himself a Donald Trump-supporting Democrat. Both Rubio and Cruz have faced challenges in other states and from the billionaire mogul Trump on the campaign trail. But the arguments that they’re not eligible to run for president because of circumstances of their births have been routinely turned back by state election officials.
Kern, who’s repeatedly run — and lost — his own campaigns for political offices, argued Cruz shouldn’t be allowed on the Indiana ballot because the name he goes by — Ted — isn’t the same name that appears on his Canadian birth certificate: Rafael Edward Cruz.
Kern, who represented himself before the commission, unsuccessfully argued that Indiana election rules that allow candidates to use nicknames by which they are commonly known is a violation of federal and state laws.
“You have to follow the rules,” Kern insisted, during a testy exchange with election commission members. “If you want your name changed, then go through the court system and get it changed.”