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A view from the other side

John McCain

John McCain

Reading over some new material on citizenship from early in our country’s history, I was suddenly struck by the thought: John McCain probably isn’t a natural born citizen of the United States. If we were talking about President McCain today instead Obama, how would the story be different?

The historical fact is that McCain was nominated by the Republican Party to run for president, and that he was on the ballot in all 50 states. A lawsuit was filed, Hollander v. McCain, that challenged his eligibility, a lawsuit that was dismissed. We can reasonably presume that the lawsuits against Obama, had they been  filed against McCain would have been similarly dismissed for the same reasons, reasons that are not tied to the truth or falsehood of his eligibility.

McCain’s (and Obama’s) eligibility was not a significant factor in the election. Given that the Senate had already unanimously declared John McCain a natural born citizen in  Senate Resolution  511, it hardly seems credible that any Senator would have objected to the certification of his election and an objection must be raised by one Senator and one House member before an objection is recognized. There were articles written by law professors challenging McCain’s eligibility, but I don’t see  a mechanism by which the process would have run any differently than it did.

So how bad would it be it if someone like John McCain became President? The Framers of the Constitution were concerned about the president being a foreigner. John McCain is not, by any stretch of mind, a foreigner. Even if he weren’t a US  Citizen at birth (a distinct possibility), it  wouldn’t seem to be that big factor in self image or in his national identity.

Some call the  Constitution a living document meaning that it has to change as our culture changes. There are some who reject the living  document approach and insist on original intent. I guess I have a little appreciation for both of them.

I tell you, if McCain had been elected, I might be displeased, but there would be no Dr. Conspiracy and I wouldn’t be running around thinking I was the one ordained by Providence to bring him down. I wouldn’t be playing dress-up as a grand juror, and I wouldn’t waste time running a web site, or hounding the web sites of others demanding they accept my version of the truth. I’d be thinking about the next election, and hoping the current president does better for us than we deserved.

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51 Responses to A view from the other side

  1. avatar
    TRUTH May 17, 2009 at 12:04 pm #

    My two cents on McCain, it would be a weak argument at best if it were to have come to that. I don’t care if the man were born in a cave under the Panama Canal, 200 miles from the nearest military base. Both his parents were US Citizens and they were In the country on Orders, regardless of where he took his first breath at. They are US Citizens, without question, who returned to the US after completing the tour of duty.

    Even talking about it is just another type of “Blame Bush” tactic. Whatever to steer the attention or the blame away from Obama.

    AND, John McCain has the character to not allow a stupid B.C. to be in question. He would have been the better man and proved long ago by showing his original B.C.

    Yet another thing we have in common, wishing that the Current President does Better for Us.

  2. avatar
    NBC May 17, 2009 at 1:55 pm #

    Yet another thing we have in common, wishing that the Current President does Better for Us.

    Seems to be your lucky day then

  3. avatar
    HistorianDude May 17, 2009 at 4:03 pm #

    Some thoughts:

    Are there or are there not only two types of citizenship? I.e. “born” and “naturalized” as recognized by the 14th Amendment?? If this is so, then McCain is a “natural born citizen” even though his status is granted jus sanguinis per statute, and not jus soli per the Constitution and common law. This view was briefly accepted by the Congress that passed the 1790 Naturalization Act (containing several framers) and signed by George Washington.

    If, on the other hand, we take the position that there are two different “citizenships” at birth, one natural and one statutory, we open up a huge area of ambiguity that is useful to the less well intentioned among us. If there are two… then why not three? Five? A dozen?

    It is more parsimonious to accept the 14th Amendment along with the 1790 Act and accept the only two types of citizenship mentioned in the Constitution as comprehensive and exclusive, thus also allowing McCain’s status as natural born.


    Two asides to “TRUTH.”

    1) Your personal assertion that “you do not care” whether or not McCain actually is a natural born citizen by law strikes me as profoundly ironic. Isn’t that the mirror of an accusation that Birther’s make regarding “Obots?” If you do not care what the law is when McCain is involved, please do not expect to be taken seriously when expressing a contradictory opinion regarding Obama.

    2) Having an actual acquaintance with John McCain (not close enough to send Christmas Cards, but close enough to know each other by name), you may be overestimating his “character.” He did, in fact, refuse to be forthright with his birth certificate during the campaign, and while I like him immensely, his personal life as displayed by his marriages is not beyond reproach.

  4. avatar
    Gordon May 17, 2009 at 5:19 pm #

    It is my sincere hope that Obama never acquiesces to the wishes of the crackpots and racist on this BC issue. You people don’t deserve the attention, and if he showed the damned thing, it would be some other issue.

  5. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy May 17, 2009 at 5:22 pm #

    The Supreme Court ruled in Rogers v. Bellei, 401 U.S. 815 (1971) that there is a third class of citizen neither born nor naturalized, for whom the 14th amendment does not apply. The 1790 act, as you probably know, was repealed.

  6. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy May 17, 2009 at 5:32 pm #

    But of course Hollander sued McCain over his eligibility, and McCain did not produce any documentation. There was a bill introduced in the Senate that would have made the children of servicemen and women stationed overseas “natural born citizens” (an act whose sentiment I support) but it never got out of committee.

    Children of Military Families Natural Born Citizen Act

  7. avatar
    TRUTH May 17, 2009 at 5:38 pm #

    You People? Yes Gordy, “it would be something else”, that’s excuse #6 in the handbook.

  8. avatar
    TRUTH May 17, 2009 at 5:46 pm #

    1)I was giving my OPINION of how I felt about the McCain situation. Please don’t put your liberal Spin on my words. I Did Not say I do not care if he is born a NBC. I was implying I don’t care what Square Inch of that stupid country he was born, he IS an NBC no matter where it was….if you cared to read better before Spinning it.
    2) I don’t know JohnMcCain at all personally, but I know he is a upstanding American…something aside from his personnel life. I served in the same branch he did and believe in him.

    Not to mention, Mr. McCain never shared a Cigar with an Intern, yet any democrat I ever spoke with didn’t have a problem with that President.

  9. avatar
    richCares May 17, 2009 at 6:23 pm #

    “Please don’t put your liberal Spin on my words.”
    he doesn’t know anyhing about you, so why the “liberal” comment? typical broad brush comment that don’t mean Sh___! Just projecting aren’t you?

    that tells you what?

  10. avatar
    Expelliarmus May 17, 2009 at 6:56 pm #

    AND, John McCain has the character to not allow a stupid B.C. to be in question. He would have been the better man and proved long ago by showing his original B.C.

    We don’t have to speculate — we know that John McCain was asked to produce his birth certificate during the campaign and REFUSED — and that he took action legally to BLOCK a subpena that was issued in a lawsuit against him.

    McCain did show a purported certificate to a single reporter in a private setting, but he did not allow the reporter to photograph or copy the image — that would be an easy way to pass off a fake document as well as a real one. That is a far cry from providing the document to a third party fact checking organization like to allow them to inspect and photograph.

    I’d also note that the facts of birth as alleged by McCain could not be verified from records at the military base where he was born. So as the record stands, no one has ever seen even a photocopied image of McCain’s birth certificate, accept for a document obtained by the plaintiff who sued McCain from a Panamanian with a record of fraud (rendering the document itself dubious) — and the document that was produced by the opposing litigant shows a different birth location than that claimed by McCain.

    If we measure “character” by the willingness to show an original BC, then McCain would get an F. (I personally don’t care, for the reasons expressed by others — but I am tired of seeing this outright LIE that McCain did or would have produced a document when clearly he did not.)

    [I have my personal suspicions as to the reason. I think that McCain clearly has citizenship by virtue of a law that was enacted AFTER he was born– which makes him clearly a Citizen, but not so clearly a “natural born” one. It is likely that he was not born on the military base simply because the base hospital had not been built yet; it is more likely that officers would have chosen to use the best quality hospital available, and at the time that was probably the one in Colon. But that’s also just speculation. ]

  11. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy May 17, 2009 at 9:37 pm #

    I think that McCain’s release of a birth certificate might have stimulated discussion about his eligibility. I doubt that the birth certificate itself says anything different from what McCain AND HIS MOTHER say about where he was born. Still whether McCain was even a citizen of the United States when he was born, or whether he acquired that citizenship a year later is debatable. That’s not the kind of debate one wants during a campaign.

  12. avatar
    TollandRCR May 18, 2009 at 9:08 am #

    This reminds me of a nagging question: how much did John McCain spend in legal fees over the course of his campaign? Birther sites have claimed the Obama campaign has spent millions (or hundreds of thousands or — take your pick) on lawyers fighting the various law suits. The required filings with the Federal Election Commission have been taken as an admission of these expenditures.

    Several commenters pointed out on various Web sites that campaigns do spend millions on legal fees, including the legal fees surrounding an FEC filing. It is quite possible that none of the legal fees reported by the Obama campaign were expended to defend against the lawsuits.

    So, it would be interesting to see if Obama’s filings and McCain’s filings with the FEC show significant differences in fees paid to attorneys. If there is a difference, I would not necessarily attribute it to law suits, even if McCain should be shown to have paid out more in legal fees.

  13. avatar
    HistorianDude May 18, 2009 at 11:23 am #

    1) You believe him about what?

    2) Don’t be so sure he hasn’t shared his fair share of cigars with Interns.

  14. avatar
    HistorianDude May 18, 2009 at 11:31 am #

    Very good!! Thank you for that reference. I need to consider how that affects other arguments I’ve been making until now. But it’s clearly an important ruling.

  15. avatar
    Chris May 18, 2009 at 2:34 pm #

    I’ve often wondered what would’ve happened had McCain won the election vis a vis the citizenship debate. I feel fairly certain that there would be no McCain “birther” movement. So why the to-do about Obama? I think there are several possible explanations:

    1. Racism. It seems convenient to play the race card, as Obama is the first mixed-race President in our history. I think that’s an easy excuse, though. Reading the birther blogs and comments, it doesn’t seem that there’s latent racism. While I’m sure there’s some percentage of the birther movement that is motivated by race, I think it’s fairly small.

    2. Policy disagreement. I’ve seen the argument foisted that these folks are trying to illigitemize the Obama Administration because they disagree with his policies and the direction the country is headed. While I’m certain that 100% of the birther movement disagrees with Obama from a policy perspective, I don’t think that’s their primary motivation. Most people who disagree with a President would simply throw their support to opposing candidates in the upcoming elections in an effort to reverse the Democrat majority in the House and Senate, and then they would vote Republican in the 2012 presidential election. They wouldn’t try to completely negate a Presidency.

    3. Xenophobia. I think this is closer to the root of these people’s wild fantasies. With McCain, he fit the profile of our other 43 Presidents (OK, 42 for you Grover Cleveland enthusiasts). He was “familiar”, and thus wouldn’t have generated any sort of backlash that he wasn’t “one of us”. Obama, on the other hand, undoubtedly had a unique childhood that the birthers don’t consider “normal”. That’s why you see them use the word “usurper”, which implicitly indicates that he’s an “outsider” or not “one of us”. The fantasy that he’s a secret Muslim or Arab also indicates a level of xenophobia among the birther crowd. He doesn’t fit the profile of what they believe a President should be, so therefore he can’t legally be President in their warped world.

  16. avatar
    kimba May 18, 2009 at 4:17 pm #

    While I agree that there is a view that Obama is a bit “exotic or foreign”, I think the problem most birthers have with Obama is that he is not white. “Usurper” is a word they adopted because they can’t say “ni@@er”. Listen to the comments at blog radio, the way they hiss the word ‘Usurper’. There’s a comment over at one of the birfer blogs that states natural born citizens are those of “pure blood” and Presidents are meant to be of “pure blood.” To me that says it all about where they are coming from. They can’t stand a black family living in the White House. They’re having a harder time hiding it the more frustrated they get that they aren’t getting anywhere with anyone in authority. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that StormFront is interested in the Grand Juries and the GJ activity is primarily in southern, former slave states.

  17. avatar
    Chris May 18, 2009 at 5:31 pm #

    I don’t disagree that there’s a certain level of racial prejudice behind the whole birther culture. However, if you look at the rhetoric used by the “leaders” of the movement, you’ll find it saturated with nationalist sentiment. They view themselves as the true defenders of the Constitution and the American way of life (or at least what they consider to be the American way of life). If you dig deeper into some of the comments that you see on the blogs, you’re going to find a lot of anti-Islam screeds and basically a mistrust of anything they don’t consider to be “American”. Of course racism can play a part in that, but it’s more a general fear of anything that doesn’t conform to their worldview.

  18. avatar
    Expelliarmus May 18, 2009 at 6:00 pm #

    The biggest legal expenses involved in a political campaign are probably FEC compliance issues and election protection.

    There were complaints back & forth against both campaigns for alleged violations of election & campaign financing laws. For example, McCain got loans during the primaries based on a promise to take public funding, but then opted out of the public financing for the primary — that generated a complaint. Obama’s massive fundraising operation resulted in all sorts of complaints about the nature and source of various contributions– so Obama probably had to pay a lot for lawyers just to handle the reporting end of things and make refunds where necessary. That got complicated because Obama was also selling stuff from his web site and counting purchases of buttons & t-shirts as “donations” – so I remember they had a problem when some Palestinians placed an order for a few thousand t-shirts.

    “Election protection” is all the stuff that candidates do to make sure that their supporters can vote. So for example, when the Obama campaign got wind of a plan for Republicans to check foreclosure lists and challenge voters whose addresses showed they lived in foreclosed homes, they needed to take action. When Gary Indiana set up locations for early voting in the white parts of town, but not in the parts of town where blacks & hispanics live — litigation was necessary. Some of these was spearheaded by separate nonpartisan voting rights groups — but I do know that Obama recruited thousands of volunteer lawyers for his election protection efforts and there had to paid legal staff supervising those volunteers as well.

    The birther lawsuits are pretty easy to defend from a legal point of few. They are badly pleaded by inept lawyers who clearly don’t have standing – so it’s pretty elementary stuff to draft a motion to dismiss. On the scale of $$ generated in defense, it’s an easy task.

    Lawyers tend to charge a lot of money every time they take a phone call, and law firms love to run up hours — so I am sure that even an *easy* case would run up a 4-figure legal bill — but its likely that the defense of all the birther cases together has run into 5 figures, not 6. The other stuff I mentioned — FEC + election protection — is more complex, more time consuming, and represents a much bigger chunk.

    Also, there are a ton of legal expenses run up on just operational tasks, such as leasing of campaign headquarters in various locations, or negotiating media advertising buys, or dealing with setting up venues where you expect 100,000 people to show up to hear the candidate. Not all of that requires lawyers — but the minute there is any kind of dispute or hitch, a lawyer would have to come in to help iron out the details.

    It would be interesting to see a percentage breakdown of all the costs. I’ll bet the birther lawsuits are a tiny fraction, probably well under 2% of the overall legal expenditures.

  19. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy May 18, 2009 at 7:31 pm #

    My recollection is that Obama’s legal fees are quite a bit higher than McCains, but Obama took contributions and McCain accepted public funding. Therefore the accounting for Obama’s campaign finances was massively larger.

  20. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy May 18, 2009 at 7:49 pm #

    Going forward, it will be simpler. Just file a FOIA with the Department of Justice and ask them how much they spent, since future cases will be paid for by us taxpayers.

  21. avatar
    TRUTH May 18, 2009 at 9:36 pm #

    EXP, bottom line is McCain wasn’t elected, so he needs not prove a thing to be POTUS. Your concerns about that are even worse than the history teachers that continue to use the “but Bush left this country with x”, and the current POTUS being the leading user of that phrase.
    Had McCain won, then you would be correct to want to see authentic proof.

  22. avatar
    NBC May 18, 2009 at 10:39 pm #

    McCain was elected presidential candidate. As to Bush leaving this country with many problems, much of them self inflicted due to mismanagement, is of lesser interest.
    So I guess, until the candidate has won, we should not be interested in authentic proof, after which it is too late.


  23. avatar
    Expelliarmus May 19, 2009 at 2:21 am #

    I would assume that Obama’s legal expenses would have been significantly higher simply because he ran a BIGGER campaign. He had more campaign offices and more staff in more places. More supporters. (More voters). More states in play. A good deal of legal expenses would have been spent in the last part of the campaign simply in preparation for things that didn’t happen (such as being prepared for possible recounts in some states).

  24. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy May 19, 2009 at 7:59 am #

    I must admit, it does seem rather silly to ask for proof of eligibility after the election.

    If proof of eligibility is indeed something that should be a general part of the electoral process, then why, before the election, was Obama singled out and McCain (largely) given a pass? McCain has far more substantial eligibility problems than Obama ever did. (I don’t consider unsubstantiated rumors an “eligibility problem”.)

    And for the record, I don’t think it’s racism or xenophobia. I think it’s plain old right v. left, fanned by amateur (and perhaps professional) propagandists and dirty tricksters. Keep in mind that most everything one sees from the nObama side is fraudulent, not just uncompelling. Take PJ’s comment that even a 5th grader knows the president can’t have foreign parents; I’m not saying PJ is lying, but SOMEBODY told that lie and passed it on. Somebody cut off the grandmother tape so that the part about Obama being born in Hawaii was deleted; somebody made up that lie about block 7c on a Hawaiian birth registration form; TechDude was a fraud; Polarik is a fraud; the travel ban to Pakistan was a fraud; the Indonesian adoption law cited is a fraud; the Soetoro entry is a fraud. Most folks, left or right, don’t fake evidence; political operatives and tricksters do.

    Over the last 8 years, conservatives were fed the line that they were were the overwhelming majority — entitled to rule, and reality turned out to be different and what a shock that was. Obama isn’t eligible to be president because he’s liberal.

  25. avatar
    Chris May 19, 2009 at 12:53 pm #

    Doc: I don’t think you can discount the racism/xenophobe angle for the birther contingent. While the conspiracy theorists are right-wingers, their insatiable desire to prove his ineligibility goes far beyond ideology. There are plenty of people who disagree with Obama’s politics, but 99.9% of those concede that he’s perfectly eligible to be the President. Orly and the rest are simply pissed off because a guy with a funny name resides at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

  26. avatar
    TRUTH May 19, 2009 at 2:34 pm #

    NBC…it isn’t as if your favorite birthers did not ask for a Real B.C. before the election on Mr. Obama. And as I said elsewhere, you have NO IDEA what exactly McCain did show and whom he showed it to. It is a Non-issue is the thing, and YOUR the ones complaining about something that means nothing at this point, but continue to make excuses for the man that DID get elected but refuses to even attempt to show his real B.C. Regardless of the COLB being valid, him and his people know what millions wanted to see, they swear it exists, but took NO steps to show it as irrefutable evidence.

    Know this, I haven’t come in here to complain Specifically about the COLB. I don’t care about that issue even anymore. But yes I WILL give you my opinion on it when the subject is on the table. When I was a military recruiter, we could not have accepted your a COLB to enlist a man. Yet a man can become POTUS with it now.

  27. avatar
    NBC May 19, 2009 at 2:48 pm #

    NBC…it isn’t as if your favorite birthers did not ask for a Real B.C. before the election on Mr. Obama.

    Cool but that was not your ‘argument’.

    And as I said elsewhere, you have NO IDEA what exactly McCain did show and whom he showed it to. It is a Non-issue is the thing, and YOUR the ones complaining about something that means nothing at this point, but continue to make excuses for the man that DID get elected but refuses to even attempt to show his real B.C.

    Again that is a lie as he did show his ‘real BC’ or at least its legal equivalent the COLB.

    For someone who claims that the issue is not really about the COLB, you suddenly seem to have a lot of issues with it.

    I guess, it’s hard to deal with the facts that Obama showed the legal and relevant evidence that he was born on US soil.

    And that’s the real TRUTH. Simple as that.

  28. avatar
    NBC May 19, 2009 at 2:50 pm #

    When I was a military recruiter, we could not have accepted your a COLB to enlist a man. Yet a man can become POTUS with it now.

    It seems you are unfamiliar with the Hawaiian laws and how the federal government will have to accept the COLB as legally equivalent.
    Again, your limited experience, has led you to accept something as fact where a minimum of research would have revealed your errors.

    You’re lucky that I like enlightening others as to the errors in their ways.

  29. avatar
    Patrick McKinnion May 19, 2009 at 4:39 pm #

    “Not to mention, Mr. McCain never shared a Cigar with an Intern, yet any democrat I ever spoke with didn’t have a problem with that President.

    No, he just womanized, cheated on his 1st wife, (you know, the one who waited for him while he was a Prisoner of War), divorced her because she had been in an auto accident and no longer was as pretty as she had been, married a beer heiress, and used her family’s money to bankroll his move into politics.

    Much better than fooling around with an intern, don’t you know.

  30. avatar
    Expelliarmus May 20, 2009 at 7:30 am #

    Well, certainly a more lucrative choice.

  31. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy May 20, 2009 at 8:05 am #

    Truth, when you say “When I was a military recruiter, we could not have accepted your a COLB to enlist a man.” do you mean that you wouldn’t accept an image on the Internet, or that you wouldn’t accept a state-issued short form birth certificate? If the latter, I really wonder if your memory is playing tricks, and would ask for the specific documentation of the regulation that required something else.

  32. avatar
    TRUTH May 20, 2009 at 9:05 am #

    So I’m a Liar? I think I know what I could and could not accept when I was doing my job. That job was so difficult, I’d have accepted a note from their Mother if I were allowed, but it was clear what I had to have.

    Also, where did I EVER say he wasn’t born on U.S. soil? Just replying to you I feel like I’m falling into your deep well of idiocy. My concern was only ever about showing the most accurate document available. You can take your colb, frame it, hang it and shine a light on it with the words painted all around it “This Is A Valid Document”, I don’t care. Obama, Obama’s minions, Hawaii officials, You and all the other Democrats claim there is an original BC, but you only make excuses to prevent from showing it.

    The only thing your familiar with NBC is what you’ve read/learned in here. You cut/paste your Knowledge. I LIVED in Hawaii, my son was born there and HAS a real B.C., and in 6 years I could never accept a COLB in recruiting. MAYBE they can now, but not when I left in 2000. It is obvious they are accepted to be POTUS.

    You claim I have a lot of Issues with the COLB, when I say I don’t. A fault of mine is I often take 50 words to say 5, and when speaking to people like yourself I use even more just to be clear as I can. You seem like the kind of guy that will have a sign in your front yard the next 4 years “We Won!” Careful not to pull a muscle patting yourself on the back. At least Pelosi is a Democrat also.


  33. avatar
    TRUTH May 20, 2009 at 9:20 am #

    I’m not defending anyone that did something wrong, I’m sure you have lived a perfect life P.M. BUT, Mr. Clinton was in a unique position, he was the PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES!! POTUS getting a BJ in the Oval Office, Government Property supported by Taxpayers Money. If I as a U.S. Sailor did anything remotely similar to that, on a Navy Ship, I’d have gone to the Brig. Again, I’m not defending McCain, but there is a BIG difference when you do some things, where you do them and what position you hold when you did them. There are thousands of divorces daily, and many more thousands of cheaters, but they aren’t THE PRESIDENT. If you don’t comprende’ that I’m sorry, we must be looking through different color glasses.

  34. avatar
    NBC May 20, 2009 at 9:40 am #

    Thanks for verifying that this is all just your opinion. As I am more interested in the facts of the matter, I will have to take your beliefs and assign it an appropriate level of relevance.

    Obama showed his COLB which shows him born in Honolulu. That you believe there exists a ‘more reliable’ document, called a BC, ignores the facts.
    You spend a lot of time on claims which when exposed as flawed are quickly turned into ‘your beliefs’.

    Fine, that explains what kind of TRUTH we are talking about.

  35. avatar
    NBC May 20, 2009 at 9:41 am #


  36. avatar
    SvenMagnussen May 20, 2009 at 10:35 am #

    And I would like for Truth to tell us, as a Navy recruiter, what he would do if he was told by a recruit he grew up poor but attended expensive private high school, expensive private colleges (out of state) with spring break vacations to Pakistan and not the typical Padre Island or Daytona beach and then was told the recruits records were off limits.

    And when Truth said to the recruit, “I believe you, but I’ll have to have certified copies of your school records to verify the historical record of your personal history. All recruits are required to do this regardless of race or ethnicity.”; what would Truth do if the recruit said, “You’re a racist and a xenophobe for asking for those documents?”

    Would Truth turn to his commanding officer and say, “I need sensitivity training?”

  37. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy May 20, 2009 at 11:02 am #

    I did check current Navy Recruiting manuals online: the requirements for birth certificates are very much the same ones the the State Department requires for a passport, and those are met 100% by the Obama COLB.

    For example:

  38. avatar
    NBC May 20, 2009 at 11:05 am #

    None of the records affect the natural born status of the President.

    I am sure Sven already knows this though.

    The president was vetted by the voters, the electoral college, the States, the Congress.

    Such are the facts, we are looking forward to 4 different years.

  39. avatar
    NBC May 20, 2009 at 11:07 am #

    Predictable… Thanks for once again debunking a myth DrC.

  40. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy May 20, 2009 at 11:10 am #

    Recruiters ask for documentation on where their recruits vacationed in college? Get real.

    A transcript is a totally different thing, which might be relevant in the military. However, there are no educational requirements for being President.

  41. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy May 20, 2009 at 2:31 pm #

    There are (or at least have been) some state-issued birth certificates that are not suitable for military enlistment, specifically ones that don’t show the date of registration. I would speculate, though, that such documents are no longer issued by states, because of the complaints they would have received when trying to use them.

    There is an essential disconnect in nObama thinking about the Hawaiian Certification of Live birth, and it is a practical one. It doesn’t make sense for a state to issue a document to its citizens which is not accepted by others. Think how ludicrous the image of every single military enlistee in the State of Hawaii having to hassle with the department of vital statistics because the military wouldn’t accept the birth certificate that they ordered from the state health department web site.

    Are there warning statements on the health department: “if you are applying for a birth certificate for military enlistment purposes…do this special thing”, or “if you are applying for a birth certificate for US Passport purposes be sure and order the version that has your REAL place of birth on it?” No, there aren’t.

    All of the nuttery about Hawaiian birth certificates bolsters that racism argument, not about African Americans, but about Native Hawaiians and Asians. It suggests that Hawaiians are idiots in how they do vital statistics — which is not the case.

  42. avatar
    Joyce May 20, 2009 at 2:31 pm #

    No matter what documentation is collected on any person for any particular job, the employer is not permitted to make public the information gathered.

  43. avatar
    Gordon May 20, 2009 at 3:29 pm #

    Truth is leaving a lot to be desired with his recruiting story. As I have said before, I joined the U.S Army and got a passport with the same short form birth cert. as Obama has displayed, and that was years ago.

  44. avatar
    JeffSF May 20, 2009 at 4:01 pm #

    And when Truth said to the recruit, “I “believe you, but I’ll have to have certified copies of your school records to verify the historical record of your personal history. All recruits are required to do this regardless of race or ethnicity.”; what would Truth do if the recruit said, “You’re a racist and a xenophobe for asking for those documents?””

    Hmmm a more perfect analogy would be: a black man walks into a recruiters office and shows his ID. The recruiter says: In your case we demand different proof than we have ever asked any recruit from before, and even though we have never asked for any other recruit to explain their foreign travels, we are asking you- our first black recruit to do so, in order to protect the constitution. We just forgot to do that for the last 200 years with the other recruits.

  45. avatar
    SvenMagnussen May 20, 2009 at 7:03 pm #

    White people only have to show an ID? I thought the military required a high school diploma or GED and no prior felony convictions.

    How does a recruiter ascertain these specific pre-conditions for employment without demanding certified documents?

    And if Natural Born Citizenship is a pre-condition, then how can an online image of a stunted birth record be sufficient to establish said pre-condition without substanstive follow-up?

    Or is that racist?

  46. avatar
    NBC May 20, 2009 at 7:09 pm #

    And if Natural Born Citizenship is a pre-condition, then how can an online image of a stunted birth record be sufficient to establish said pre-condition without substanstive follow-up?

    The online image represents a copy of the necessary document which is called a COLB, or certification of live birth which is sufficient and legal evidence to establish the necessary information to determine natural born status. Namely, born on US soil.

    The online image of course is by itself not sufficient but established for anyone interested that Obama was, not surprisingly, born in Honolulu.

    Why is any more follow up needed? No courts have required the COLB to be presented. What am I missing?

    PS: How could an online image of a birth certificate establish McCain’s eligibility? Using your logic nothing would satisfy you but a certified copy in your hands.


  47. avatar
    Expelliarmus May 20, 2009 at 7:20 pm #

    TRUTH, the Manual that Dr. Conspiracy posted makes it absolutely clear that a COLB like the one photographed by would qualify:

    (a) Birth certificates must meet all of the following criteria to be considered valid:

    Full Name – First, Last, and Middle Name(s). The birth record must include
    the complete middle name(s) as well as a first and last name.

    Birth Date. All birth certificates must include the date of birth.

    Birth Place. State, County and/or City. Some birth records do not list the
    birthplace city or town. These records are adequate so long as they list the county,
    province or State of birth.

    Birth Record Validation. A birth record must bear appropriate validation
    markings for use as primary verification evidence. The government agency or hospital
    may accomplish authentication or certification with original or machine-produced
    signatures or raised, impressed, embossed, or multicolored seals or stamps, or a
    combination of these. Any one combination of these official validation methods is
    acceptable. Hospital birth certificates and short form birth verification cards issued by
    vital statistics offices are the most likely documents to not have the required
    authentication. In such cases, the recruiter must use the long form birth certificate or
    DD Form 372 certification procedure.

    You’ll find this on pages 31-32 of the PDF at

    The COLB meets all those requirements — it has Obama’s full name, date of birth,, city & state, and a raised seal along with signature of a Dept. of Health official.

    So you are either mistaken or things have changed since you worked as a recruiter.

    I’d note that this is not a good forum for you to try to pass off-the-cuff opinions or bluster as fact — obviously we are going to check out any claims and it is easy to prove the b.s. wrong by citation to real documents.

    So try to stick with the real “truth” — that which can be documented.

  48. avatar
    Gordon May 20, 2009 at 11:47 pm #

    Obama could tie a certified copy around his neck and walk from one end of the country to the other and it still wouldn’t be enough. As it has been said many of the birthers are xenophobic, some racist. Some see conspiracies every waking minute, and at this point would tell you George Soros or some New Order Bilderberg type had ensured Obama had a spot on fake made. It’s a loss cause. As I said before I revile in their misery and hope he never gets a notion to ever address the issue again.

  49. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy May 21, 2009 at 6:41 am #

    If a recruit joins the military they do not have to show you their school transcript or their GED certificate. I say “show you”. They may have to show it to the recruiter or someone, but not to YOU.

    As a voter, you have every right say: I won’t vote the guy until he …. but the election is over and you likely didn’t vote for Obama anyway. So what you’re doing is analogous to standing outside a military installation, carrying a sign demanding to see the high school diploma of all the folks inside.

  50. avatar
    HistorianDude May 24, 2009 at 4:18 pm #

    Hey look what I found? A letter from Obama to Kapiolani Medical Center claiming it as his place of birth:


    The White House

    January 24, 2009

    Kapi`olani Medical Center

    Dear Friends,

    I am writing to share congratulations on the centennial celebration of the Kapi`olani Medical Center for Women & Children.

    Kapi`olani was one of Hawai`i’s earliest hospitals, and it has served many generations of Hawai`i’s people with distinction. The Medical Center reaches out to children of all backgrounds, and treats more than 62,000 children per year. As a beneficiary of the excellence of Kapi`olani Medical Center – the place of my birth – I am pleased to add my voice to your chorus of supporters.

    Hawai`i has always been a home to me, and I’m pleased to take part in your celebration. Thank you for your hard work, and I wish you all the best for the next one hundred years.



    Barack Obama

  51. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy May 24, 2009 at 5:18 pm #

    HistorianDude, that made my day! In true tradition, you have an authoritative link to a primary source.