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Cruz declines to 'speculate' about eligibility to run for president

1:26

DALLAS -- Texas Republican Sen. Ted Cruz on Tuesday refused to say whether he believes he is eligible to run for president of the United States even though he was born in Canada.

"I'm not going to speculate about legal consequences - I'm going to leave that to others," Cruz told reporters at a press conference ahead of a town hall style meeting in Dallas focused on repealing President Barack Obama's health care law.

"I've been an American since birth," he said. 

Cruz was born in Canada to an American mother and a Cuban father, making him a citizen at birth. But some have questioned whether he qualifies as a "natural born" citizen, as the U.S. Constitution requires. U.S. courts have never fully grappled with the question of whether a citizen who was born abroad can legally serve as president. 

And being born in Canada also made him a Canadian citizen at birth. After the Dallas Morning News reported Monday that he is citizen of both countries, Cruz said he will renounce his Canadian citizenship. 

Cruz also released his birth certificate to the newspaper.

Senator Ted Cruz released his Canadian birth certificate to Reuters on Tuesday. Sen. Ted Cruz via Reuters

The outspoken conservative senator has planned a series of visits to states that have an early say in the presidential primary process, stoking speculation that he is considering a campaign in 2016.

At the press conference, Cruz also refused to say whether the Constitution should be changed to allow those who are not "natural born" citizens to become president.

He also declined to say if he believes there are any similarities between his situation -- being born abroad to American parents -- and the questions that plagued Obama during his presidential campaign. Obama was born in Hawaii; he released his long form birth certificate during the 2012 campaign.