A bill has been introduced in the Tennessee House (HB2595) and Senate (SB2625) that would prohibit a presidential candidate who is not a natural born citizen from appearing on the general election ballot, even if nominated by a political party. There is no definition of “natural born citizen,” no process for validating the qualification, nor any explicit mechanism given the public for challenging the status of a candidate.
I recall that in many states the law requires placement on the ballot of the nominee of a recognized party—placing a candidate on the ballot is a ministerial duty. In some states, such as Arizona, the candidate must file an affidavit attesting to their eligibility or as in South Carolina, the State Party must certify it.
Tom Humphrey, former News Sentinel Nashville bureau chief wrote:
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.
It would seem to this observer that the only purpose for such a bill would be to cause embarrassment to the other party.