Bloomberg’s Anatoly Kurmanaev has the run-down. The money quote:
Maduro said June 17 in Italy that he was born in the Los Chaguaramos district of Venezuela’s capital, Caracas. Foreign Minister Elias Jaua said the same day that the president is a native of El Valle district, which borders Los Chaguaramos. Tachira Governor Jose Vielma said in April that Maduro is a native of that western Venezuelan state.
Spokesmen for Venezuela’s Information Ministry and presidential office didn’t immediately answer phone calls seeking comment.
A ruling by Colombia’s Supreme Court that Maduro is Colombian would make Maduro ineligible for the presidency.
Quico pipes in: MIA from this idiot debate is the fact that even if Maduro was born in Cucuta, he’s still a “natural born Venezuelan” under Article 32 of the 1999 constitution. To wit:
Son venezolanos y venezolanas por nacimiento:
Toda persona nacida en territorio de la República.
Toda persona nacida en territorio extranjero, hijo o hija de padre venezolano por nacimiento y madre venezolana por nacimiento.
Toda persona nacida en territorio extranjero, hijo o hija de padre venezolano por nacimiento o madre venezolana por nacimiento, siempre que establezca su residencia en el territorio de la República o declaren su voluntad de acogerse a la nacionalidad venezolana.
Toda persona nacida en territorio extranjero de padre venezolano por naturalización o madre venezolana por naturalización, siempre que antes de cumplir dieciocho años de edad, establezca su residencia en el territorio de la República y antes de cumplir veinticinco años de edad declare su voluntad de acogerse a la nacionalidad venezolana.
Juan Cristóbal retorts: As several readers have pointed out, if Maduro has both nationalities and has not rescinded his Colombian one, he is not qualified to be President (which he isn’t anyway, by virtue of having the IQ of a snail).
As long as we’re going to argue this out in updates, Quico counters: I think what rankles is the failure to think politically about this, to understand the power realities at stake.
As that IAEE election report noted, there are already far more clear-cut, absolutely-beyond-interpretational-ambiguity reasons to call Maduro’s presidency plainly, straightforwardly unconstitutional: his accession to the presidency following Chávez’s death ahead of the chairman of the National Assembly was plainly unconstitutional, as was his ability to stand for election without separating himself from the office.
These things are spelled out explicitly in the constitution with no real possibility of arguing the factual basis. The power reality on the ground, based on Chavismo’s stranglehold on the TSJ, render these considerations moot. So we already know that this sort of formalistic reasoning can do nothing to undermine Maduro’s capacity to hang on to power.
That’s the context that we have to consider this in. What we’re dealing with is a conspiracy theory with much weaker factual grounding than the already public and notorious violations of March-April. And it’s a factual basis that – even if it could be unambiguously established – could be nullified in the one or two seconds it would take Nicolás Maduro to sign a letter renouncing his Colombian citizenship, even if that became necessary, which it won’t, because the TSJ has already more than openly demonstrated its willingness to keep Maduro in power regardless of far clearer, far more straightforward constitutional violations.
Maduro Birthirism is, in other words, a total waste of time: more magical thinking from an opposition that should instead be concentrated upping its clandestine game and – if it has the courage of its conviction – be focused instead on chipping away at the actual powerbase of a government held in place by its stranglehold on the military, on the supposedly-but-not-actually state institutions that ought to keep the executive in place, in a patina of international legitimacy.
Yes this topic pisses me off. It’s like we’ve learned nothing.