Posted on 27-04-2011
Filed Under (Politics) by Rashtrakut

In recent weeks a publicity seeking Donald Trump has latched on to the nutty birther fringe to leap to the top of the polls of Republicans running for President (it must be noted that these early polls are fairly meaningless).  Arizona’s governor Jan Brewer showed a willingness to stand up to her state’s Republican birther fringe by vetoing a bill that allowed Arizona to ignore the full faith and credit clause of the constitution and establish its own requirements for eligibility to run for President.  Louisiana’s Bobby Jindal indicated a typical craven propensity to roll over in face of the birther fringe. Even though the President has long since released documents that confirm his citizenship and these have been confirmed repeatedly by Hawaii officials, this controversy would not go away.  The Republican leadership’s refusal to call out these conspiracy kooks and Faux News repeatedly giving these kooks a platform also kept the controversy simmering (you can bet the Republicans would not have responded to the 9/11 truthers by “taking President [Bush] at his word” or saying that it was “not my job to tell the American people what to think”).   Alaska’s half-term quitter tacitly endorsed Trump’s crusade.

The tipping point for the President may have been a recent interview with George Stephanopoulos on fiscal matters that veered off to the world of birthers.  So the President went to the trouble of asking the State of Hawaii for special permission to access his long-form birth certificate (a standard no other politician in recent memory has been held to), and the long suffering State complied.  This was followed up by the presidential statement below:



Even though he claimed credit for the release of the certificate, Donald Trump did not respond to being lumped by the President with “sideshows and carnival barkers.”

Of course this will not end the story.  The birther fringe will not go away.  Donald Trump, whose own son-in-law bought his way into Harvard, has now started the racially charged drumbeat questioning how Barack Obama was admitted to two ivy league schools.  Since he is black and did not have the blessings of legacy admissions like Messrs Gore and Bush, there is supposedly no way he was “smart” enough to go there (an assertion that drives James Fallows bonkers).

The funny part of this sorry episode is that Barack Obama was not the 2008 Presidential candidate born outside the United States (though that candidate satisfies the naturally-born citizen requirement).  Also even if Barack Obama had been born in Kenya, as the child of a United States citizen (his mother) he would probably still be a naturally born citizen.  So lets sit back and see the birthers make bigger fools of themselves and hope that the media starts ignoring Donald Trump like they are ignoring Sarah Palin.



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