Obama citizenship denial or birtherism is a phenomenon that began during the US Presidential campaign as an attempt to discredit Barack Obama by claiming that he was not born in the United States or that his father was not a US citizen at the time of his birth, and that being born in the US is a requirement for being elected President.
Despite extremely strong evidence that it is outright wrong, and its failure to succeed in any legal challenge, the idea has almost gone mainstream. Most likely this is because it gives an acceptable outlet for racist impulses: it's a few short steps from "he's black " to "he's not one of us " to "he's not really an American. It should be noted that even if Obama was born in Kenya as alleged by the wingnuts, it would still not change anything about his citizenship or eligibility for the Presidency, since the term natural born citizen - lifted and incorporated into the US from the legal system of the British Empire - included anyone born to one or more citizen parents, even if the birth itself occured on foreign territory.
Since this is the only external reference for the meaning of the term at the time that the Constitution was written damn liberals and their original intent!
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The evidence that Barack Obama is a natural-born U. President Donald Trump claimed birtherism as a long-held belief, until suddenly flipflopping in September , personally blaming Hillary for having started the manufactroversy, and claiming that he was now the one to "finally end it".
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Anne Dunham. However, spin propagated on conservative talk radio and other media outlets claim that Obama was not born in Hawaii, or that Obama was a dual citizen at birth even if born in Hawaii because his father was a Kenyan citizen at the time of Barack II's birth. Motives for such smears continuing despite evidence to the contrary are usually attributed to bitterness that the Republicans lost the election or that they just couldn't stand a black man running the White House. The fact that Obama's father came from Kenya and thus in a way Obama could be considered Kenyan, as he does indeed have relatives there, is the absolute closest thing there is to any truth for this theory.
Spring 2011: Trump joins the movement
In response to the rumors, the Obama campaign created a website called Fight The Smears which published a scanned copy of Obama's short-form birth certificate. However, for some idiots, that wasn't enough to prove that Obama was born in the U. Despite the straight and simple facts, many Americans still insist on following the spin.
Common sense dictates that the imagined conspiracy would have to be inconceivably large, requiring a young Obama or his parents, or some shadowy agency, playing into "Manchurian candidate" conspiracy theories to plant a birth certificate in Hawaii, fabricate at least two birth announcements in newspapers at the time, falsify college records, bribe immigration officers, and somehow fool election officials. Furthermore, the entire mainstream political establishment, including the Republican Party, would have to be complicit in so far as they have refused to challenge Obama's qualifications.
But common sense has never been a large part of the general human thought process. These people were largely ignored until the summer of when, with a dearth of news stories and hours to fill in a week, cable news channels started to give them serious airtime. People United Means Action are the group of "Hillary supporting democrats" who started the rumors that Barack Hussein Obama wasn't really a naturally born U.
This is not a coincidence. Those who maintain the idea that Obama is not qualified to be president, usually in the gnashing teeth of all available evidence, are often called "birthers. If nothing else, they serve as amusement to the sane. These are most common objections raised by birthers, mostly in response to the fact that they seriously have lost contact with the fact-based world.
The original argument is best explained by WorldNetDaily :. Some of the challenges question whether he was actually born in Hawaii, as he insists. If he was born out of the country, Obama's American mother, the suits contend, was too young at the time of his birth to confer American citizenship to her son under the law at the time.
Other challenges have focused on Obama's citizenship through his father, a Kenyan subject to the jurisdiction of the United Kingdom at the time of his birth, thus making him a dual citizen. The cases contend the framers of the Constitution excluded dual citizens from qualifying as natural born. Additionally, questions have been raised about Obama's move to Indonesia as a child and the passport he used to travel to Pakistan as a young man.
At the heart of every birther's claim is the need to see Obama's birth certificate. Despite multiple images officially released scans and the factcheck. As a result of the images of a birth certificate and thus its entire contents being available, a new claim developed: that the "short form" birth certificate produced is supposedly available to anybody , even those born out of state or overseas. Nevertheless birthers continually demand that Obama release the original "long form" certificate "with the doctor's signature. The birthers further claim that the Certification of Live Birth the short-form birth certificate is not good enough to obtain a range of things, from a passport to entry to pre-schools, depending on who is making the claim.
However, the certificate produced states at the bottom that it is " Prima facie evidence of the fact of birth in any court proceeding.
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The birthers ignore two very important facts in their quest to insist that the certificate that has been produced still doesn't qualify:. Birthers also ignore the fact that various people have access to, and have seen, the original certificate rather than just a photograph or image which should be the same thing, really. An early claim was that Obama's birth certificate was a Certification of Live Birth not a Certificate of Live Birth , and various claims were made, from it not being of the same legal standing, to it being a forgery.
Apparently, not seeing the word they expected to see confused the birthers.
Hawaii is considering changing the name to "certificate" to bring it into line with other states. In any argument with birthers it is not long before they fall back on "why doesn't Obama just release his long form certificate if he has nothing to hide"? This is the typical conspiracy-based thinking; they assume Obama's birth certificate is being hidden and then they start " just asking questions.
The answer is that Obama's short form certificate is sufficient to prove he was born in Hawaii. As they are true kool-aid drinking conspiracy theorists, no amount of evidence is going to convince birthers that Obama is legitimately the President of the United States. If he produces a long form they will claim it is a fake or that a government official is being paid bribes.
Once sold on a conspiracy the theorist is unlikely to abandon it, as all evidence to the contrary is just part of the larger conspiracy. Despite the fact that the short-form certificate should have been sufficient, Barack Obama went ahead and released the long-form certificate in April  , in both.
Sadly, but predictably, this has not ended the "debate. Apparently, one professional time-waster thought they had found the "jackpot" — Obama's Kenyan birth certificate. World Net NutDaily made big news about it plastering it all over the front page. Much has been made of the supposed "fact" that Obama's grandmother says he was born in Kenya. Others have claimed that she has made a "sworn deposition" saying that he was born in Kenya. This claim is false from beginning to end. There is most certainly no "sworn deposition" but there is a slightly confusing telephone conversation in which the clearest fact is that his family — grandmother included — insist he was born in the USA.
Listen to the conversation itself and decide. If this conversation is evidence of anything, it's evidence:. Obama's birth was announced in the local press in Hawaii as can be seen here. Despite this corroboration of his Hawaiian birth, the birthers are still not convinced. While WorldNetDaily dismiss it as merely indicating that the birth had been registered in Hawaii, as the newspaper receives the announcement from the Department of Health Vital Statistics System, and they claim that it was issued with the certificate of live birth, which they have already decided is unacceptable to them.
Even Chuck Norris finds this hard to believe. The issue of where Obama was born is relevant only if a US birth is required to be a "natural born citizen. No current US legislation uses the term "natural born citizen," and it appears only once in the Constitution although basic common sense might suggest that perhaps a "natural born citizen" is someone who is born a natural citizen. The only mention of citizenship is in the 14th Amendment , Section 1, Clause It thus clearly appears that by the law of England for the last three centuries, beginning before the settlement of this country, and continuing to the present day, aliens, while residing in the dominions possessed by the crown of England, were within the allegiance, the obedience, the faith or loyalty, the protection, the power, and the jurisdiction of the English sovereign; and therefore every child born in England of alien parents was a natural-born subject, unless the child of an ambassador or other diplomatic agent of a foreign state, or of an alien enemy in hostile occupation of the place where the child was born.
The same rule was in force in all the English colonies upon this continent down to the time of the Declaration of Independence, and in the United States afterwards, and continued to prevail under the constitution as originally established. Essentially being born in one of the states of the US, as Hawaii had been for two years, makes you eligible to be President once you are 35 and have lived in the country for 14 consecutive years. A few birthers have attempted to cite the midth century treatise Le droit des gens [note 3] by Emerich de Vattel.
Exactly how this reconciles with the USA's rather straightforward jus soli policy as stated in the 14th amendment is something of a mystery, especially given that if Law of Nations was truly the law of the land, it would be regularly cited in court cases; considering Vattel was a proponent of "natural law" and the founders worked from English common law, this is a pretty big gap. The more legal-minded birthers, on occasions, fall back on the Naturalization Act of in their argument of what constitutes a natural born citizen. In particular, the clause:.
Obama traveled to Pakistan, back in , to visit family. The Birthers insist that travel to Pakistan in was not possible using a US passport and therefore Obama must have been traveling using another passport — presumably from a country with strong Muslim ties.
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What if that person went looking for our girls? Donald Trump, with his loud and reckless innuendos, was putting my family's safety at risk. And for this I'd never forgive him. When Trump was asked about Obama's book, he deflected and instead criticized his President Obama. I'll never forgive him for many other things," Trump told reporters outside the White House on Friday morning.
The conspiracy theory, which alleged that former President Barack Obama was born outside the U. In , Trump started pushing the theory in television interviews as he floated the possibility of a presidential run.
Because if he can't, if he can't, if he wasn't born in this country, which is a real possibility Trump injected a religious element into the conspiracy, as well, suggesting that he hasn't shown his birth certificate because "maybe it says he's a Muslim. The first discusses her upbringing in Chicago and explores issues of race, class and education.
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The second recounts her romance and relationship with Barack Obama, and the final section focuses on their lives in politics and under the public eye. Sign up for free newsletters and get more CNBC delivered to your inbox.