donald trump caricature flickr cc

The Democrats are facing a very tough election. Former US Attorney Joe DiGenova is predicting that Hillary or someone in her inner circle is going to be indicted just about the time of the SEC primary. Even if she remains merely an unindicted simpleton, she is a lackluster candidate who runs behind all GOP nominees despite or because of her name recognition. An uninspiring candidate at the top of the ballot is going to spell Armageddon for Democrats running down-ballot. So when Donald Trump went full metal birther on Ted Cruz yesterday, it was only natural that the White House would make the most of it.

If you missed it, in a Washington Post interview (no link to the Post because I don’t have a subscription and have “exceeded my article quota”, so this is the USA Today knock off of a real interview) Donald Trump got his crazy on yesterday and began a birther attack on Ted Cruz. His contention is that Cruz, born in Canada to an American mother, may not be a “natural born citizen.”

“Republicans are going to have to ask themselves the question: ‘Do we want a candidate who could be tied up in court for two years?’” Trump told The Washington Post in reference to the Texas senator. “That’d be a big problem … It’d be a very precarious one for Republicans because he’d be running and the courts may take a long time to make a decision. You don’t want to be running and have that kind of thing over your head.”

So Josh Earnest weighed in:

“Republicans are going to have to ask themselves the question: ‘Do we want a candidate who could be tied up in court for two years?’” Trump told The Washington Post in reference to the Texas senator. “That’d be a big problem … It’d be a very precarious one for Republicans because he’d be running and the courts may take a long time to make a decision. You don’t want to be running and have that kind of thing over your head.”

Never mind that virtually no one believes this. But my purpose here is not to argue the finer points of English common law with random people who don’t know that they are talking about. Cruz shrugged it off as he has so many attempts by Trump to pick a fight:

BUT. But this is the type of issue that can dog a candidate and distract them from the real issues. Bill Clinton and Hillary Clinton are discovering that is can be disorienting when someone disrupts your ramblings about how you are going to take all the money rich people have (except, of course, for the Clintons) and give it to the poor to ask you about a random rape committed by Bill Clinton.

So expect the White House to encourage this story every chance they get. And it won’t be long before Hillary starts using it, too.