Skip to main content

photo of Iowa GOP official Don Racheter
Don Racheter: Iowa GOP platform provision
 "a shot at" Obama.
There were a couple of minutes back when Barack Obama released his long-form birth certificate that I actually thought the birther brigade would finally shut up. They had gotten everything they asked for. Against the counsel of some of his advisers, the president had done what no other president in history had done, no other presidential candidate in history had ever done. He had proved with verified documentation that he was actually, truly, really, really, really born in the United States, the offspring of an American citizen and thus eligible to serve in the office for which other American citizens in their millions had chosen him.

That should have been the end of the story. The president proved what anybody with half a brain and absent a racist political agenda already knew to be true. He was just as American as the rest of us. The amateur and professional purveyors of the Kenyan birth conspiracy tale and all its permutations ought right then and there to have dropped to their knees and apologized to everyone within earshot.

But. No.

(Continue reading below the fold)

If the holdouts who still believe—or at least say they believe—that Obama is a Kenyan or Indonesian or some other not-American were just guys sitting around in their basements surrounded by white supremacist literature and bandoleers, they could just be written off. But, sadly, infuriatingly, that's not the case.

There is, for example, the Iowa GOP's proposed 2012 platform. It's a document brimful of paranoia, stupidity, vapidity and anachronism (like investigating ACORN, a disbanded organization). The platform includes this bit:

“We believe candidates for President of the United States must show proof of being a ‘natural born citizen’ as required by Article II, Section 1 of the Constitution — beginning with the 2012 election.”
In case you're inclined for some unaccountable reason to give the Iowa GOP the benefit of the doubt here, Don Racheter, the chairman of the Iowa Republican Party's platform committee, made clear in an interview with Radio Iowa what the intent is:
“There are many Republicans who feel that Barack Obama is not a ‘natural born citizen’ because his father was not an American when he was born and, therefore, feel that according to the Constitution he’s not qualified to be president, should not have been allowed to be elected by the Electoral College or even nominated by the Democratic Party in 2008, so this is an election year. It’s a shot at him.”
Translation: We won't be convinced of Obama's citizenship unless Jesus writes it in the sky with a burst of celestial fire.

Meanwhile, across the country in Arizona, home of Sheriff Joe Arpaio, who is still engaged in his own "investigation" of Obama's credentials, Republican Secretary of State Ken Bennett is continuing to bellyache because Hawaii officials won't provide him with proof of the legitimacy of Obama's birth certificate so he can determine whether the president's name can appear on the Arizona ballot.

Sick of being deluged with up to 50 requests a month regarding Obama's birth certificate, Republican Gov. Linda Lingle signed a bill telling Hawaii officials they can ignore such requests. Instead of ignoring Bennett, however, they're making him jump through hoops to prove he has legal authority to run this investigation. TPMMuckraker filed for the email exchange between Bennett and Hawaii's Deputy Attorney General Jill Nagamine and received this collection.

In a radio interview, Bennett said he is "not a birther" and believes Obama was born in Hawaii. But then he hedged, saying "or at least I hope he was."

In other words, he's having it both ways. Just like the guy he backs for the presidency. You see, Bennett co-chairs Mitt Romney's presidential campaign in Arizona. So, as Steve Benen points out, "Romney's top ally in a battleground state is also the man responsible for overseeing the state's elections, and the official threatening to keep Romney's opponent's name off the Arizona ballot."

If Team Romney wants to keep the stink of birtherism off their candidate, they ought to be on the phone with Bennett right now telling him to abandon his absurd opportunistic request of Hawaiian officials to prove what's already been proven. But if that phone conversation came to public attention it might cost them the votes of wackjobs already suspicious that Romney is a closet socialist. And they wouldn't want to do that.

Originally posted to Meteor Blades on Tue May 22, 2012 at 09:36 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Sylv, Odysseus, mwm341, teacherken, eeff, dsb, Walt starr, hubcap, cskendrick, wonkydonkey, annrose, djMikulec, shanikka, mkfarkus, Iberian, navajo, Cedwyn, psnyder, NYC Sophia, Steven Payne, Catte Nappe, bwintx, KayCeSF, tomjones, llellet, oortdust, sawgrass727, Gowrie Gal, Julie Gulden, marina, radarlady, DianeNYS, Ckntfld, Unit Zero, Brooke In Seattle, Laurence Lewis, eru, dansk47, LNK, Gordon20024, coolbreeze, Rogneid, Mother Mags, WB Reeves, Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse, Keone Michaels, highfive, tonyahky, raptavio, luckydog, blueoasis, megisi, MJ via Chicago, wild hair, gatorcog, mithra, JVolvo, myrealname, ER Doc, middleagedhousewife, anninla, means are the ends, sea note, Quicklund, pat of butter in a sea of grits, Tamar, pgm 01, bluicebank, Loudoun County Dem, SharonColeman, ColoTim, Stwriley, Uwaine, bnasley, jnhobbs, uciguy30, GeorgeXVIII, trueblueliberal, sable, Empower Ink, gizmo59, rogerdaddy, adrianrf, kimoconnor, OleHippieChick, crescentdave, Involuntary Exile, bythesea, mikeconwell, glendaw271, phrogge prince, luckylizard, dmhlt 66, Mike Taylor, shortgirl, lissablack, legendmn, Sun dog, prettygirlxoxoxo, lostinamerica, LinSea, Domestic Elf, Carol in San Antonio, Mislead, CamillesDad1, bfitzinAR, kevinpdx, sfarkash, nancat357, mahakali overdrive, Larsstephens, Railfan, bronxcharlie, commonmass, Alohilani, CajunBoyLgb, p gorden lippy, kjoftherock, Polly Syllabic, alguien, NM Ray, Storey, DrTerwilliker, elengul, ericlewis0, cocinero, science nerd, Oh Mary Oh, stevenaxelrod, Actbriniel, kerflooey, mama jo, Bob Duck, slowbutsure, hooktool, Mr MadAsHell, freesia, deeproots, marleycat, sethtriggs, Cinnamon Rollover, IllanoyGal, thomask, BarackStarObama, MinistryOfTruth, disconnect the dots, Vatexia, zenox, weinerschnauzer, jadt65, DRo, googie, BoulderStevo, DEMonrat ankle biter, AnnetteK, Sister Inspired Revolver of Freedom, jacey, Liberal Granny, anodnhajo, TheLizardKing, Siri, a2nite, JGibson, belinda ridgewood, MartyM, pittie70, notdarkyet, Margd, wxorknot, tytalus, avsp, arizonablue, dotdash2u, databob, Bisbonian, Greatwyrm, blueoldlady, broths, paccoli, OjaiValleyCali, Demeter Rising, rigcath

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site