- The Washington Times - Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Is Santa Claus an American citizen?

That question came up during a hearing Wednesday at the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, as Sen. Robert Menendez quizzed Bruce Heyman on his nomination to serve as U.S. ambassador to Canada.

Mr. Menendez, committee chairman, asked Mr. Heyman about international claims to the Arctic and noted that Canada and Russia have insisted the North Pole is their territory.

Mr. Heyman said the United States is conducting a study to determine how far into the Arctic the U.S. continental shelf extends.

“If we were to succeed in this process, in terms of our claim, would that mean that Santa Claus is an American citizen?” the New Jersey Democrat said, deadpan.

Mr. Heyman, a former managing partner at Goldman Sachs, noted that Canada and the U.S. track Santa’s path on Christmas Eve via the North American Aerospace Command (NORAD).

“It is my understanding that Santa … is a citizen of the world,” he said.

“You have displayed your diplomatic abilities in an extraordinary fashion,” Mr. Menendez said as he closed the hearing.

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