General Question

Captain_Fantasy's avatar

Will the "birthers" be satisfied even if Obama produces his birth certificate in a press conference?

Asked by Captain_Fantasy (11431points) April 14th, 2010 from iPhone

FFS, that’s your President Americans, you gotta deal with it.

If you didn’t know, birthers are a subset of the tea party who believes despite public record, that President Obama was not born in the US. They have a tendency towards histerical fanaticism.

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75 Answers

tranquilsea's avatar

I think it it is crazy that this has was even brought up….and then has gone on as long as it has.

Your topic tag, “critical thinking” should actually be anti-critical thinking.

Brian1946's avatar

No, they’d probably claim that it was forged.

What the birthers should do to satisfy their obsession is go back in time to Kenya to his birth date, get their video cameras out, and record his “birth” there.

Once the birthers are in 1961 Kenya, Rachel Maddow and John Stewart can turn off the time machine at this end. :-D

wonderingwhy's avatar

They just want him out of office. If he did they’d find some excuse to invalidate it or just come up with some other rhetoric to blather on about.

JLeslie's avatar

He has provided his birth certificate. The Republican Governor of Hawaii has even agreed the certificate is real and agrees he was born there. I understand we require a person to be born in America to be president, but really, whether he was born in America or not makes no difference in who he is, it would be an accident of birth, all it would be is a technicality to get rid of him. I saw one of those birthers having a fit screaming at some town hall meeting that Obama is not an American. No matter what he is an American, his mother is American. These people are nuts.

Bernard's avatar

Wait.
I thought it was all over like, 2 months into his presidency. Are there STILL people arguing that he wasn’t born in Hawaii?

jaytkay's avatar

Are there STILL people arguing that he wasn’t born in Hawaii?

There’s a military (soon to be ex-military) doctor in the news who’s whining that his orders are invalid because Obama is not president.

nikipedia's avatar

No. It has been explained to me that the argument goes something like this: in the state of Hawaii, a certificate of live birth doesn’t need to be created until 24–48 hours after the actual birth. So in theory, Obama could have been born in Kenya, flown around the world, been snuck into the hospital, and then received his certificate of live birth.

Makes perfect sense now, right?

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

I would like to see it ;)

JLeslie's avatar

@lucillelucillelucille Here you go http://www.snopes.com/politics/obama/birthcertificate.asp there is a link on the page to see the certificate.

JLeslie's avatar

I wonder if Obama had been born on a military base in Saudi Arabia if the birthers would be ok with that? I am sure you all know where I am going with this.

kevbo's avatar

i didn’t realize Hawaii had laser printers in 1961.

JLeslie's avatar

@kevbo It is a new original.

ubersiren's avatar

There will always be someone who just can’t leave this issue alone. There are a dozen other reasons to want him out of office, but they’re dwelling on this controversy.

@Captain_Fantasy FFS, that’s your President Americans, you gotta deal with it.

Ah, but here’s the rub. Even if we didn’t vote for him, he’s our president and we have to deal with it. Ain’t democracy grand.

Blondesjon's avatar

The whole “birthers” thing is complete idiocy.

Let Obama not get voted in for a second term based on his job performance not on whether or not he was born in the states.

Captain_Fantasy's avatar

That’s how it works ubersiren. I didn’t like the last President much and I dealt with it.

Cruiser's avatar

The whole issue is a moot point and amazing it still even has legs. As long as his parents were US Citizens he could have been born on the moon and been legal to be President.

“Only native-born U.S. citizens (or those born abroad, but only to parents who were both citizens of the U.S.) may be president of the United States,”

LuckyGuy's avatar

“Will the “birthers” be satisfied even if Obama .._______ .” Fill in the blank with whatever you like, e.g. solves world hunger, eliminates cancer, brings the Dow above 12000, etc. The answer is “No!”.
Pinheads.

kevbo's avatar

@Cruiser, I thought it was settled that his dad wasn’t a citizen. Is that not accurate?

JLeslie's avatar

I didn’t think his father was American either. He just attended college here I think? Not sure.

Cruiser's avatar

@kevbo Actuallt I am not sure about that…

Jeruba's avatar

These are not birthers. They’re harassers. They are satisfied when they arouse doubt, controversy, mistrust, and anger. They are not satisfied when they don’t.

I prefer not to satisfy them.

IchtheosaurusRex's avatar

Big O would never bother with such a thing. He’s got real problems to deal with.

kevbo's avatar

@Jeruba, that’s true to a point, but some are genuinely concerned about old timey ideas such as the rule of law.

Jeruba's avatar

Those people should be the first to oppose mob rule and defend rational adherence to principle.

Do they think—do you think—that the rest of us are not concerned with rule of law?

kevbo's avatar

I think his eligibilty is a legitimate question that hasn’t surfaced a satisfactory answer.

And your rhetoric implies you are less than concerned in this case.

JLeslie's avatar

@kevbo Not being argumentative, just pointing out that the definition of “natural born citizen” has come under question several times in history. Pretty much everyone agree McCain, having been born in the Panama Canal Zone should be allowed to become president, even though he was not born in one of our 50 states. I think there is question to whether the hospital was actually on US territory or not. But, I think all Americans would consider the spirit of the law, and agree he should be able to run for President. Barry Goldwater was born in Arizona when Arizona was a Territory of the United States. During his run for president I think many objected to where he was born, I think Arizona became a state a few years after his birth. There are more examples that I cannot remember.

The spirit of a law is important, the intent.

JLeslie's avatar

@kevbo I found this http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Natural_born_citizen_of_the_United_States very interesting. The requirement is to be born in the US and have lived here a minimum of 14 years, and be minum 35 years old. So someone could be born here and live 20 years in another country, it can be formative years, and still run for president. That person is probably less likely to be perceived “American” than Obama if someone just met them and knew nothing about their place of birth. If I vacation in Mexico and go into labor early my baby can never be president? Even though he is raised, educated, and born to American parents? That seems a little ridiculous actually.

Jeruba's avatar

@kevbo, your answer implies that only a person who questions Obama’s American citizenship is concerned with the rule of law and that someone who is already satisfied on the point is not. In other words, anyone who disagrees with your conclusion must be in disregard of the law.

Val123's avatar

They’re idiotic paranoids. If McCain had become president you wouldn’t have heard a word about the fact that he really WASN’T born in the US! He was born in Panama to US citizens stationed on a military base there. He still qualified (in that one respect!) for the presidency.

Blondesjon's avatar

@Val123 . . . Very true. You would have heard that he was an out of touch geezer with one foot in the grave.

kinda like Ronnie

kevbo's avatar

@Jerbua, not true. I said some, whereas you say anyone who disagrees with your conclusion is a harrasser, etc.

@JLeslie, McCain’s parents are citizens, so if @Cruiser is correct it doesn’t much matter where he was born.

Val123's avatar

@kevbo Further, you only need one American parent to be an American citizen, so even if Obama WAS born on Pluto, it’s all good, since his Mom was from Kansas. Which is part of the US no matter WHAT anyone else says!

kevbo's avatar

@Val123, yeah, if the one-parent rule is true, it’s a non-issue. Problem is that it’s likely not true or correct, but if you have a source, I’m happy to be convinced.

The bottom line for me is that he has one non-citizen parent and historical (or however one would characterize it) narrative predating his campaign run that says he was Kenyan born. Official documents and any other effort seem unable to put that narrative to rest. So as far as I am concerned it’s not resolved.

Val123's avatar

@kevbo They’re all nuts, IMO!!

Ludy's avatar

@nikipedia BUT HOW DID THEY KNOW HE WAS GONNA BECOME THE PRESIDENT?

Cruiser's avatar

@kevbo That is the hanging chad I did not realize when I posted about both parent being US citizens it would be a moot point but now for the fact that his dad was not a US citizen at the time of Obamas birth! This then drags this beast back under the spot light and as you have pointed out is not yet resolved to a point of no contention.

Val123's avatar

@Cruiser He’s a citizen of the US. And a great President, IMO.

Cruiser's avatar

@Val123 Prove it beyond a reasonable doubt, no one else has yet to do it

Bernard's avatar

@Cruiser I thought showing a birth certificate was “beyond a reasonable doubt”.

Val123's avatar

@Cruiser It’s being proven as we watch….only the history books will be able to tell for sure…

CyanoticWasp's avatar

To answer your question: probably not.

But the question is an interesting one, and I wonder that no one has addressed why it is an interesting question. That is: The Constitution sets out very clearly the ‘rules of eligibility’ for being elected President of the US. Fine. We know what those are, and the rules are clear.

The question is: Who vets that? Who does a President-elect (or candidate, for that matter) present his ‘qualifications’ to? I don’t think that that question has ever been adjudicated, has it? I’ve never seen a “birth certificate review” provision in the Constitution. I think it’s really been overlooked all these years. Otherwise there would be no question now.

As far as this president’s politics and policies, I don’t like them any more than the last few, but I do agree that he should not produce the document. Or at least, he shouldn’t produce it until the Supreme Court has made a ruling on *who gets to examine the President’s birth certificate to judge that ‘this person meets the eligibility requirements’—and everyone else can shut up. There would be nothing to gain, and only more problems raised by the President trying to run around the country attempting to ‘prove’ his qualifications to anyone who opens his mouth.

Cruiser's avatar

@Bernard That “birth certificate” is the center of much controversy as there are elements of its construct that didn’t exist at the time of BO’s birth. According to experts, it is either a fake or a digitally enhanced copy. Hardly the proof that other experts demand. We are after all taking about the Presidency here.

Bottom line is he is now President and was elected on his perceived merits and convictions which should transcend technicalities such as a birth certificate. No one else fought harder to get the job than him so let him do his job and live or die by his actions and abilities.

kevbo's avatar

@CyanoticWasp, the vettors, I believe, are the states’ respective boards of elections, who are responsible for certifying candidate eligibility prior to allowing them on ballots in that state. That’s why you might find candidates for president that are not on the ballots of all 50 states.

I don’t remember the details at all, but I remember reading one conspiracy article about Obama-related manipulations at the state level (which of course never happens during elections as we all know).

CyanoticWasp's avatar

@kevbo you may be right; I can’t say. But I do know that the state boards are more concerned with keeping out third-party challengers (one part of election law that Democrats and Republicans never seem to disagree on). I’m not aware of any specific provisions in law for each of the fifty states to check the eligibility of the various candidates from this perspective. They’re more concerned with whether the party itself qualifies to have a candidate on the ballot and whose name/s will appear.

If anyone in a position of authority really had examined and qualified the documents, then the question wouldn’t be raised, would it?

With that said, I think it is certainly incumbent upon Congress to draft legislation to have an electoral commission of some sort examine candidate documentation to make this determination before we do someday turn over the presidency to someone who is not at all ‘qualified’ by birth.

SeventhSense's avatar

Can we abort the birthers?

CyanoticWasp's avatar

@SeventhSense as much as people might be upset with “the birthers’” insistence upon proof of eligibility… it’s a valid and perfectly reasonable question. I’m just astonished that it’s never been raised and settled before constitutionally. If it isn’t settled (with a workable bill presented to the President and signed into law) by the end of Obama’s term how this question should be avoided in the future, then Congress doesn’t deserve to sit.

jerv's avatar

I am with @worriedguy on this one; they will never be happy. Even if they get far-right loonies in the White House, all 535 seats in Congress, and all 9 spots on the Supreme Court,

@CyanoticWasp I agree that it’s one of those things that should be dealt with, but I also think that the sort of people that make a big stink about Obama’s citizenship are the sort of people who would consider such a law null and void simply because it happened with a Democrat in the Oval Office.
One other thing to consider here is that times have changed. I feel that that provision is a bit dated in that the world today is well beyond the world that our forefathers envisioned.

JLeslie's avatar

@kevbo Well it seems they are saying “citizens at birth” as the interpretation of natural born citizen. If you have an American parent, you can have an American passport, you don’t need two American parents for that.

SeventhSense's avatar

@CyanoticWasp
He’s PROVEN the citizenship of his birth. The point is null.

kevbo's avatar

@JLeslie, that may be true, I don’t know, but that would obviate the need for a birth certificate altogether, which would have saved much of the populace a lot of brain strain.

kevbo's avatar

@SeventhSense, that certainly settles that he is a citizen, but so is Arnold Schwarzenegger. It also confirms that McCain was born in a US facility (although one of the reader comments explains why that is disqualifying).

The reader comments provide some other roadblocks not considered here.

jerv's avatar

@kevbo It depends on what the meaning of the word ‘is’ is :P

kevbo's avatar

@jerv, haha!

As stupid as that sounds, I read somewhere that there are around 17 legal definitions of “is.” No joke.

JeffVader's avatar

Sadly no, logic cant argue with racism.

mattbrowne's avatar

Birthers are morons. It’s best to ignore them.

JLeslie's avatar

@kevbo I think natural born citizen needs to be looked at again, in the courts, because the world has changed, it would help avoid future problems. I am not saying that one parent and a child born out of the country is enough to meet the standard of eligibity to be president, but just pointing out that the child born to an American is American.

kevbo's avatar

Yeah, that makes sense. It’s not really a mouth frothing issue for me, just not a silly Q IMHO. it probably matters much less anymore who the individual is.

jerv's avatar

@kevbo What sort of actual legal action has been taken in a courtroom that would require said birth certificate to be released? If this outcry has been limited to mere propaganda and protesting then there is no reason for them to release it; nothing that qualifies as tangible interest.

Now tell me, would it be reasonable for me to get a copy of your birth certificate just for the asking? Probably not. Is it reasonable for a body that needs to determine the citizenship of a particular person to be told by the entity that holds the birth certificate that it exists and release the minimum amount of data necessary to establish, say, eligibility to run for public office, I think that that is reasonable.

I mean, when I was in the Navy, the DoD would confirm to anybody that had a need-to-know that I was in the Navy but wouldn’t release any details that a questioner had no tangible interest in. For instance, credit card companies are only entitled to know your employer and your salary, they didn’t need to know my home of record or current duty station, so the DoD passed along the minimum amount of information necessary when I applied for a Visa. My mother was allowed to get more information than you could since she had a tangible interest in knowing the whereabouts of her son (within the limits of operational security) but had no legitimate reason to know how much I made. The amount and type of information released depends on who asks and how much they really need to know.

The Registrar performed their job in accordance with all applicable laws, rules, regulations, and instructions or lack thereof from their superiors. Asking anything else of them is to pretty much deny the rule of law, at least when those laws are inconvenient to you or your agenda. At that point, why have a government at all? Let Anarchy reign!

kevbo's avatar

Hi @jerv, I’m glad to hear that you’re running for president. You know, there seems to be a lot of crazy rhetoric about you not being eligible for the office because supposedly you are not a natural born citizen. We both know that’s just stupid, but maybe for the sake of sucking the air out of this so called “birther” movement, why don’t you just release a copy of your original birth certificate? You know, the one that the State of Hawaii’s Department of Health Director has personally seen and verified as being on file? That certainly seems to be the simplest solution, doesn’t it?

What’s that? You’d prefer to release a “new original”? Yeah, you’re probably right because honestly no one else has a need to know the really personal details of your life (isn’t that what the books are for, after all) and surely the with all the billions we’re pouring into your election campaign, you can probably still win even though one might say we’re taking some chances with the voters by playing a little three card monte with your birth certificate. I mean anyone but Bush, right? Yeah, that makes sense.

@JLeslie, some more ‘natural born citizen’ discussion

jerv's avatar

@kevbo Trust me, if you saw my original, it’d crack and I’m not quite as old as President Obama. Paper doesn’t last forever so you’d pretty much have to settle for a certified copy or take the word of the Registrar in (I’m not telling you where) that I was born in the US. The Department of Defense believed them though.

Seriously, I guess you don’t trust any public records, do you? Not even your own. If you do then you are a hypocrite. But you seem to smart for that sort of illogical nonsense so I am going to guess that you are a mere skeptic. Of course, by that logic, we wouldn’t have had a President ever really. I mean, do you honestly believe that the government of Hawaii is in on some vast conspiracy? That they would break the law by fabricating something like this? If they would then what makes you think that Connecticut didn’t lie about G.W. Bush?

The part that really doesn’t make sense to me here is how it’s okay for the Right to get a pass but the Left can’t be trusted one bit, and anybody who doesn’t support the Neo-con agenda is part of the conspiracy. Explain the sense of that!

Or is it your position that both Obama and McCain were ineligible to serve as President?

kevbo's avatar

@jerv, Who said I don’t trust any public record? Do I really need to repost my position above?

Repost: The bottom line for me is that he has one non-citizen parent and historical (or however one would characterize it) narrative predating his campaign run that says he was Kenyan born. Official documents and any other effort seem unable to put that narrative to rest. So as far as I am concerned it’s not resolved.

Does your certified copy bear an official signature and state seal? Because Obama’s copy doesn’t. Does your public/historical narrative contradict your public records? Mine doesn’t. I would guess that is rare for most people, except in cases of tabloid journalism, which Obama has certainly been a victim of, but I think most would agree that, for example, NPR isn’t tabloid journalism.

So how long does paper last? Especially when it’s locked in a file drawer?

How hard is it to buy or blackmail politicians these days? Or to bully or bribe bureaucrats into keeping their mouths shut? I mean, that never happens, right?

I don’t know about McCain, although there certainly seem to be cases for and against his eligibility. (At the very least he had two citizen parents—which is also previously noted above but I will spell it out again since you seem to be on tl;dr.) This question isn’t about McCain, and I never considered him a serious contender, but (also posted in a link above) the U.S. Senate went to the trouble of passing a unanimous resolution declaring McCain a natural born citizen on April 30, 2008, so regardless of my personal opinion, someone thought it was important enough business to bring it to the Senate floor. Feel free to make sense of that.

Shit, IMHO, George Bush’s eligibility is probably the only indisputably true thing about him. Bu$hco is the original conspiracy if there ever was one.

My position is that I think it’s curious that the country managed to throw up two presidential contenders of questionable eligibility and how that seems to dovetail with other current events that one might characterize as sidesteps, constitutionally speaking.

jerv's avatar

@kevbo The world is full of a lot of bullshit being flung in many different directions though a lot of it seems to be thrown to the Left lately and I may have misread what you are saying I do that sometimes but I think that we both agree that people make mountains out of molehills look how much Tiger Woods and Jesse James have been in the new, pre-empting anything going on in Iraq and I think it safe to reassert my original position that some people will never be satisfied.
Anything more would be beyond the scope of the question and, quite honestly, I am tired right now and ready to call it a night.

I will leave you with this though; since I honestly don’t know (brain is foggy right now), have there been any legal challenges to Obama’s citizenship or has it been merely a bunch of Tea Party saber-rattling?

kevbo's avatar

@jerv, there have been a number of lawsuits filed and FOIA requests and to my knowledge none of them have been heard or honored. I’ve generally thought that the birthers were around long before the Tea Party gained prominence, so I don’t believe the OP’s assertion that the birthers are a subset of the Tea Party movement is accurate although I’m sure the groups overlap to some degree.

This report says 60 lawsuits costing Obama $1.7 million to defend against.

I guess to answer the original question, I don’t know how one can reconcile his public record/narrative and his birth certificate without altering one or the other or both.

Val123's avatar

(Anyone notice that when the idiots want to insult President Obama in a round about way, they use his full name of “Barack Hussein Obama”....you can just feel the emphasis on “Hussein”....like that means something dasterdly….)

JeffVader's avatar

@Val123 Whicj is really funny since the only ‘Hussein’ thats been relevent to America was their puppet for many years, who they aremed, who then turned on them, & who had nothing to do with either Islam, or terrorism.

CyanoticWasp's avatar

@SeventhSense do you have any idea how many dummy “real copies” of Obama’s birth certificate are floating around the Net? The copy you provided a link to earlier in this thread is just another in the string of “real copies” that I’ve seen. And different from all of the rest.

My point is that the Constitution doesn’t provide for any official reviewing body for this document. It’s certainly not the LA Times… or the NY Times, either. In fact, it shouldn’t be in a newspaper at all, I think. I’m not qualified to judge the authenticity of a document that I see reproduced in a newspaper, nor am I qualified to interview the holder of the original record regarding its authenticity.

But this has raised an interesting Constitutional question: Who should review and certify that the candidate/s and President-elect (and Vice President-elect, for that matter) are qualified to hold the office by right of birth? That oversight should be remedied.

JLeslie's avatar

@kevbo Your links reinforce that the discussion should be taken to the courts before we have another candidate who can be questioned. I know you were agreeing with this. If McCain had been born in the countryside of China I think he should be eligible if he was raised in America, educated in America, and his parents are US citizens, not to mention his father and family have a legacy in our military. If one parent is American, the the child is American no matter where born. True the child might have dual even possibly three passports (my nephew was eligible for three) but then I think if you want to maintain your American citizenship you file something when you are 18? I am not 100% clear on the rules. My nephew has a Mexican Mother and an Italian father, was born in Florida while they were both here with green card status. My nephew lived in Santo Domingo from the ages of 10 months to 6 years old, and then returned to America, and for the Birthers he is legit (well probably not to the birthers cause I think they make up shit to satisfy or exaggerate their own fear) but I guess legally he can run for president. In my opinion my nephews upbringing was less “American” than Obama’s. Although, I put America in quotes, because I do think of America as a country of mostly immigrants or from immigrant families.

Anyway, I read on one of your links that there was a question that Obama had travelled on a different or a non-American passport at times. That does not mean he is not American or that he was not born here. I guess it has been argued he did not even travel on another’s country passport, but my point is even if he had it might be ok and legal.

It just seems like the birthers are people who don’t know anyone from a foreign country, narow in their scope or understanding of how complex citizenship can be, they lose credit when they argue he is not an American. Saying he is ineligable for the presidency is one thing, not American is another. But, I realize you are not a “birther” I am not lumping you in with them.

If there is an original document somewhere I don’t see why Hawaii would not product it? My neighbor needed am original copy of his birth certificate a few years ago, and what they sent him had him being born in a different city than his birth in NY state. When he called he was told that the city had been renamed since his birth and there was no way to get a birth certificate with the original city name that was listed on his original birth certificate. That is why I question if really there is an original original as stated in your quote.

The truth is documents can be forged, no question, but it really seems to me that he was born in Hawaii, and in my mind even if he wasn’t he is still a loyal American I believe. The same way I believe it about McCain. Obama lived in Hawaii during his most formative years, he was raised by Americans, and educated in America for the majority of primary, all of secondary education and University.

This accident of birth probably shoud be questioned as a way to be an American in general, but that is another topic.

Dutchess_III's avatar

OK. Now what. His original original certificate has been provided.

jerv's avatar

Now for the debunking and more cries of “Forgery!”.

talljasperman's avatar

It’s like the same chance that people will belive that Donald Trump never had a personal bankruptcy or real hair.

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