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Out of state births

Attorney Paul Jensen rather maligned the State of Hawaii on the CNN program Anderson Cooper 360 this week by suggesting that anyone could just fill out a form and get a birth certificate from Hawaii, and refused to accept the assertion that Hawaiian birth certificates correctly state the place of birth.

Of course, Jensen was blowing smoke, citing a law from 1982 that could not have influence the registration of President Obama’s birth in Hawaii back in 1961. However, the impression is still left that there is something fundamentally wrong with Hawaii’s vital records procedure; and that is completely false. Hawaii follows procedures that align with national standards. It is not a “birth certificate mill.”

So what is going on here? Many states register out of state births as a courtesy to their citizens. If an established resident of a state travels outside the state and gives birth to a child, that person may return to the state, provide documentation of the out of state birth, and get a special certificate from the state certifying the documentation of that out of state event. In every case, the correct place of birth is given.

Today, electronic intrajurisdictional exchange (IJE) and the Electronic Verification of Vital Events (EVVE) system are making the process computerized.

We already know about Hawaii, but I wanted to mention other states that provide this same courtesy certificate to their residents:

  • Legislation in Vermont: (f) The network’s data system shall be designed to coordinate with the data systems of other states so that data on out-of-state births to Vermont residents will be captured for vital records, case ascertainment, and follow-up services. The commissioner of health is authorized to enter into interstate agreements containing the necessary conditions for information transmission.
  • Rhode Island Birth database: All persons born in Rhode Island and all persons born out-of-state to Rhode Island residents.
  • Kansas: Out of state births part of vital records system.
  • Georgia: Out of state births recorded. (pay article)
  • New Jersey:  Out of state births part of Electronic Birth System (PowerPoint)
  • Louisiana: “The Vital Statistics Cooperative Program, a nationwide system of information interchange among all states and territories, makes possible the reporting of out-of-state births to Louisiana residents.” (Microsoft Word)

I have information that Arkansas, Wisconsin and South Dakota also register out-0f-state births. This us just what I could find quickly.

31 Responses to Out of state births

  1. avatar
    Scott Brown May 12, 2010 at 10:59 am #

    You seem to be very concerned at the implications of Obama’s birth having no possibility of being an out-of-state birth and merely registered in Hawaii. If I were an Obama supporter I would be concerned as well, for the implications of such would work well for those that think he was born out of the country (of which I’m not one – I think he was born in Hawaii).

    You can spout statutes, laws, rules, regulations, and all sorts of courtesy type birth registrations, the fact is Hawaii was an infant state when Obama was born. We can all WISH that the government was efficient and expedient but if we believe that, we are lying to ourselves – especially in 1961! Hawaii was admited to the union only 2 years to the month prior to Obama’s birth. We have absolutely no clue what was actually happening in that state with regards to births and birth certificates. We can hope that US laws and statutes were being followed, but a government office that ‘has done it this way for years’ takes a while to change. Yes, they were a territory prior to that for many years, but that means nothing when discussing the realm of government bureaucracy.

    Having recently visited Hawaii, they almost seem a world of their own, and certainly do not ‘act’ like they are part of the US (nor do I think most of their residents WANT to be part of the US – that is not a derogatory statement either). While that is beside the point; in 1961 I can only image the rules and regulations that were ignored and went unchallenged by most people, let alone other government officials in what had to seem like a world away and disconnected from the mainland.

    It is just a fallacy to cite laws and regs that were in place in 1961 and state for a FACT that they were followed to the letter. What SHOULD have happened and what ACTUALLY happened, most times, are two different things.

  2. avatar
    yguy May 12, 2010 at 12:19 pm #

    If an established resident of a state travels outside the state and gives birth to a child, that person may return to the state, provide documentation of the out of state birth, and get a special certificate from the state certifying the documentation of that out of state event.

    HRS §338-17.8 contains no such requirement, though it should be noted that the COLB published by Obama could not legally have been issued in pursuance thereof because §338-16 requires that “late” certificates be marked as such.

  3. avatar
    nemocapn May 12, 2010 at 12:53 pm #

    Thanks Dr. C. I was trying to find information on this by searching for “Certificate of Out of State Birth” when I should’ve been searching for “births out of state.”

    I found this on birth records in the 1997 version of “The Source. A Guidebook of Genealogy”:

    “Laws pertaining to birth records are more stringent for two reasons: (1) they can reveal illegitimacy, and (2) they are sometimes fraudulently used to establish a new identity….”

    “The Model State Vital Statistics Act and Regulations (MSVA) serves as a guideline to states when legislators consider revision of vital statistics laws. More than thirty states have enacted portions of the model act; none have adopted it in its entirety. The first model act was developed in 1907, and there have been several revisions since–the most recent in 1977 and 1993. The 1977 model proposed that when one hundred years have elapsed after the date of birth, or fifty years have elapsed after the date of death, marriage, or divorce, the records shall become public and made available in accordance with other regulations.”

    Of course, you probably already know about this. I’m just sharing it for people who don’t understand why birth certificates are private. Unfortunately I don’t have a more recent version of the book.

  4. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy May 12, 2010 at 12:54 pm #

    Scott Brown: the fact is Hawaii was an infant state when Obama was born.

    And the fact is that in 1961 they were still operating under the laws and regulations of the Territory of Hawaii which had existed since July 7, 1898. Their 1961 birth registration procedures rely on regulations the bulk of which were set into place in 1949. I think it is unwarranted to attribute some kind of bureaucratic ineptitude to Hawaii.

    You say: “Yes, they were a territory prior to that for many years, but that means nothing when discussing the realm of government bureaucracy.” I find that a vague generalization, lacking any rational basis.”

    What I find most repellent about the birther movement is not only to they denigrate and disrespect our President, they denigrate and disrespect everything that touches him, whether it be Hawaiian officials both past and present, the Congress, the Supreme Court, federal judges, and even historical figures like William Rawle and Chester A. Arthur. And on the other hand they glorify cranks, frauds and felons. In order to accept the false premise that Barack Obama is not President, they distort the rest of the world to make it fit the false premise.

  5. avatar
    richCares May 12, 2010 at 1:25 pm #

    The birther issue is over, they can’t remove Obama, plus tney won’t name and support an opposition candidate fo 2012, so what is the point of their babble, does hating Obama make them that irrational? What is their point!

  6. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy May 12, 2010 at 1:28 pm #

    yguy: HRS §338-17.8 contains no such requirement

    The residency requirement is certainly in the statute. Your error is assuming that the statute is all there is. For that, you have to look to the rules that the agency adopts to implement the statute. Attorney Paul Jensen says “just fill out a form.” There’s nothing in the statute about a filling out a form either. But read the statute again. It says:

    The director of health may also adopt any rules pursuant to chapter 91 that he or she may deem necessary or proper to prevent fraudulent applications for birth certificates and to require any further information or proof of events necessary for completion of a birth certificate.

  7. avatar
    SFJeff May 12, 2010 at 1:30 pm #

    “We can all WISH that the government was efficient and expedient but if we believe that, we are lying to ourselves – especially in 1961!”

    Do you have any evidence to support your allegation that the government of Hawaii was incompetent? Or is that just your opinion, based upon admittedly incomplete knowledge?(“I can only image(sp) the rules and regulations that were ignored”)

    In the absence of some evidence of fraud, or other systemic failure of a states birth certificate registration process, we must accept it, because frankly its not only the most objective evidence we have, it is the only uniform evidence we have.

  8. avatar
    Black Lion May 12, 2010 at 1:40 pm #

    Wow. Scott Brown, who has been called out as a liar and proven so on this blog, attacks the character of the state of HI. Which is the next in the long line of birther tricks. You know, Hawaii is not really like the rest of America, so it was probably easier for corruption to occur. That is what she is saying. Which makes sense. When someone is about not telling the truth, then they see that trait in others. The fact of the matter is that there is no proof that any fraud occured. Not one COLB or BC has been found to be forged since Hawaii was a state. There is no reason to suspect that the state of HI acted any different that any other state under the same circumstances. The fact of the matter is that the law is the law. If Scott Brown, known teller of untruths wants to claim that HI was a new state and maybe they did not follow the laws, she should provide some evidence other than her opinions….Because her opinions, like her word, is basically worthless here….

  9. avatar
    yguy May 12, 2010 at 2:03 pm #

    Dr. Conspiracy: yguy: HRS §338-17.8 contains no such requirementThe residency requirement is certainly in the statute.

    As I thought would be evident by my emphasis, I said nothing about the residency requirement – which is arguably a bit flaky by itself, but that’s another matter. I was referring to “documentation of the out of state birth”, which the statute does not require.

    Your error is assuming that the statute is all there is.

    I assume no such thing.

    But read the statute again. It says:

    I know what it says, and as you can see, adoption of fraud prevention rules that have bearing on this provision is left to the discretion of the DoH; so there is no requirement for proof of birthplace in the statute.

    Now irrespective of whatever rules may be in place to fill in the gaps left by 17.8, how Obama’s application for a BC under this law could be reconciled with the newspaper announcements in 1961 I have no idea; but the statute strikes me as a testament to the general laxity of the state of HI WRT birth registrations.

  10. avatar
    misha May 12, 2010 at 2:07 pm #

    “Having recently visited Hawaii, they almost seem a world of their own, and certainly do not act’ like they are part of the US (nor do I think most of their residents WANT to be part of the US”

    Yeah, just like Montana.

  11. avatar
    Greg May 12, 2010 at 2:12 pm #

    Texas often seems like a whole different country when I visit. They fought on the wrong side in the Civil War. I don’t think I’d assume, however, that they had an entirely non-functioning government without reading a little about them.

    Hawaii was a territory from 1898 until it got statehood. Under the territorial government system, their governor was appointed by the President of the United States.

    Anyway, Scott, you know, there are things called libraries where you can go and read things called books. Why don’t you go and find out if anyone has looked at the government of Hawaii in pre- and post-statehood.

  12. avatar
    richCares May 12, 2010 at 3:17 pm #

    I am from Hawaii, and the comments scott makes are repulsive. Though I now live in Oregon, I go back often, to visit relatives and to visit my brothers grave in Punchbowl, a place all Americans revere.

    “…certainly do not act’ like they are part of the US (nor do I think most of their residents WANT to be part of the US” is definitely derogatory. Dr.C asked us not ti use personal insults so I won’t but I sure would like to call scott brow a _________________

  13. avatar
    nemocapn May 12, 2010 at 3:33 pm #

    If Obama had an out of state birth certificate, it would’ve been discovered during a search of his passport files. Karl Rove said a new homeland security law allowed the Bush administration to get lists from the candidates of people who need to go through a background check for security clearance. Are we to believe that Bush II, the man that the conservatives say kept us safe from terrorists, didn’t bother to have someone check Obama’s passport files? Here’s information to back up my belief that Bush had Obama’s files checked:

    According to a Nov. 18, 1992, New York Times article, Elizabeth M. Tamposi, the Assistant Secretary of State for Consular Affairs, “was dismissed last week by President Bush [Sr.] for her role in the search of [passport] files on Mr. Clinton, his mother, Virginia Kelley, and Ross Perot, the independent Presidential candidate.” Her aide, Steven M. Moheban, who performed the search, resigned.

    “Ms. Tamposi has said that White House officials encouraged the search of Mr. Clinton’s records and that her superiors approved it. The inspector general has interviewed White House officials. But it is not clear whether he will assign any responsibility for the search to senior officials at the White House and the State Department, or will merely focus on Ms. Tamposi and lower-ranking employees….”

    “State Department officials say they searched Mr. Clinton’s passport file in response to requests filed by several news organizations under the Freedom of Information Act. The department acknowledges that it violated its own regulations by accelerating the search so it would be completed before Election Day.”

    http://www.nytimes.com/1992/11/18/us/state-dept-official-who-searched-clinton-s-passport-files-resigns.html

    Another New York Times article covers how the State Department handles passports:

    “The agency’s estimated 100 million passport files generally contain little information beyond a confidential passport application and documents needed to prove citizenship, such as a birth certificate. The application contains basic physical characteristics, a photograph, phone numbers, a listing of occupation, information on parents and spouses, and an optional space for the name of someone to notify in case of emergency. Tax law also requires a Social Security number.

    “The applications are kept for 100 years. The fundamental reason is so the government knows who is a citizen and who is not, especially when passports are reported lost or stolen.

    “‘We don’t keep records of people’s travels,’ the State Department spokesman stressed. ‘Everything on the application is covered by the Privacy Act….'”

    “The general passport files also contain any letters regarding citizenship. Usually, there is no correspondence. That was the case with Mr. Clinton’s file, although political appointees in the State Department were trying to find a rumored note from the Vietnam era in which Mr. Clinton was purportedly either renouncing his citizenship or requesting information on the procedure. The justification for the search was requests under the Freedom of Information Act….

    “The State Department interprets the various laws to mean that, in general, the disclosure of passport application information is barred without the consent of the individual.

    However, in the case of public officials, the department believes it is required to search the files, without prior consent of the official, to determine which parts can be released without ‘a clearly unwarranted invasion of privacy.’ In the end, nothing may be deemed releasable. Requests for passport records on President George Bush, for example, have been denied.”

    http://www.nytimes.com/1992/11/28/news/28iht-file.html?pagewanted=1?pagewanted=1

  14. avatar
    Granite May 12, 2010 at 4:09 pm #

    The issue is not whether you could get a Hawaii birth certificate if you were born outside of the state. You couldn’t, but that is not the issue.

    The issue is whether you could get a Hawaii birth certificate that said on it: “Place of birth: Hololulu, Oahu, Honolulu” if the child was not actually born in Honolulu.

    You couldn’t and you still can’t. Obama’s official birth certificate shows that he was born in Honolulu, etc. And the officials in Hawaii have said that the original in the files says that Obama was born in Hawaii, as does the governor of Hawaii.

  15. avatar
    Rickey May 12, 2010 at 6:13 pm #

    I don’t have the same credential as richCares, but I have been to Hawaii many times since my first visit to Oahu in 1969. I have been to Oahu, Kauai, Maui and both sides of the Big Island, and I have never met a Hawaiian who did not “act” like an American (unless one considers surfing to be un-American). I do not know how it is possible for “Scott Brown” to ascertain the mindset of the people of Hawaii in the course of a visit, but last year Hawaii proudly celebrated its 50th anniversary as a state.

    http://hawaii.gov/statehood/

  16. avatar
    G May 12, 2010 at 7:17 pm #

    Rickey: last year Hawaii proudly celebrated its 50th anniversary as a state.

    And of course, don’t forget that congress recognized that anniversary, with a statement that included mentioning HI as Obama’s birthplace.

  17. avatar
    misha May 12, 2010 at 11:02 pm #

    I don’t know if anyone has seen this: Hawaii Law Shuns Obama Birth Document Requests

  18. avatar
    brygenon May 13, 2010 at 5:35 am #

    Fake Scott Brown wrote: You can spout statutes, laws, rules, regulations, and all sorts of courtesy type birth registrations, the fact is Hawaii was an infant state when Obama was born. We can all WISH that the government was efficient and expedient but if we believe that, we are lying to ourselves – especially in 1961! Hawaii was admited to the union only 2 years to the month prior to Obama’s birth. We have absolutely no clue what was actually happening in that state with regards to births and birth certificates.

    So how much faith should we have in Hawaii’s state records? How much credit should we give them?

    “Full Faith and Credit shall be given in each State to the public Acts, Records, and judicial Proceedings of every other State.” — US Constitution, Article IV, Section 1.

    Whether or not we can prove Hawaii’s procedures were secure in 1961, Hawaii was already a state. We give Hawaiian state records full faith and credit out of respect for the Constitution — a respect you obviously do not share, fake Scott Brown.

  19. avatar
    Greg May 13, 2010 at 8:12 am #

    but the statute strikes me as a testament to the general laxity of the state of HI WRT birth registrations.

    Do you have evidence of other states that spell out, explicitly, in statute what evidence the registrar of vital events is required to seek?

    Because, obviously, if this statute is to provide evidence that Hawaii is extra lax compared to other states, you’d expect, for example, that the Model Vital Statistics Act to NOT say that when a birth happens outside an institution “the State Agency shall by regulation determine what evidence may be required to establish the facts of birth.” That would be lax!

  20. avatar
    Black Lion May 13, 2010 at 9:19 am #

    Thankfully Hawaii will be able to go about it’s business again….Especially since the Republican Governor has stated with 100% clarity that the President was born in Hawaii. Normally that would be enough for people, but we all know the birthers will parse her statement and make it seem like “Born in HI” means something other than being born in HI.

    “The island state’s Republican Gov. Linda Lingle signed into law on Wednesday a bill that would allow Hawaii to ignore repeated requests for President Obama’s birth certificate.

    Health Department officials say they still get 10 to 20 e-mails each week requesting verification that Obama was in fact born in Hawaii, which prompted the law.

    “”I had my health director, who is a physician by background, go personally view the birth certificate in the birth records of the Department of Health,” Lingle said during a recent interview on WABC Radio with Rabbi Shmuley Boteach.

    “The President was, in fact, born at Kapi’olani Hospital in Honolulu, Hawaii,” she said. “And that’s just a fact.”

    “Birthers” have come under fire repeatedly by the likes of Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly, Ann Coulter, and CNN’s Anderson Cooper, all of whom have dismissed the elaborate claims by conspiracy theorists who believe Obama is not a United States citizen and cannot legally be President.

    Followers of the largely discredited conspiracy theory generally argue he was actually born in Kenya. A birth certificate that surfaced online showing he was born in Africa was later proven to be false. A “news story” about Obama spending millions to hide his birth certificate was also later shown to be fake.”

    http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/2010/05/13/2010-05-13_aloha_birthers_hawaii_law_lets_state_ignore_repeated_demands_for_obama_birth_cer.html

  21. avatar
    Rickey May 13, 2010 at 9:46 am #

    Nine contract workers for the Department of Education have been indicted for illegally accessing Obama’s student loan records.

    http://easterniowanewsnow.com/tag/sandra-teague/

  22. avatar
    Don Draper May 13, 2010 at 11:06 am #

    Freedom fighters!

    The Founding Fathers would be pleased.

  23. avatar
    Greg May 13, 2010 at 11:31 am #

    The Founders who wrote the 4th Amendment forbidding unreasonable searches and seizures? Yeah, something tells me they wouldn’t be so pleased with someone breaking into snoop in one’s private files!

  24. avatar
    Dave May 13, 2010 at 12:45 pm #

    Yes, indeed. Freedom fighters. You must also be very pleased with the guy who hacked into Palin’s email account. Did you contribute to his defense fund?

  25. avatar
    richCares May 13, 2010 at 2:23 pm #

    yah SRE, they made millipns selling the results to WND. All those African loans you believe in.

  26. avatar
    D May 13, 2010 at 2:40 pm #

    It’s not simply derogatory. It’s rank bigotry, expressed in the poorly disguised terms common among people who don’t want to think of themselves as bigots.

  27. avatar
    D May 13, 2010 at 2:51 pm #

    So basically you just make up stuff to support this weird fantasy about Obama? The fact of a functioning bureaucracy prior to statehood and an extant government means nothing. You’ll just presume they couldn’t keep basic records. And then you’ll throw in that sickening little aside about how those kinds of people aren’t really like us. They can’t keep records like the right kind of people, as obviously evidenced by their lack of desire to be real Americans.

    So here’s a question for you: why do you want to broadcast your mental issues like this? They can only discredit any point you have, if you had one.

  28. avatar
    G May 13, 2010 at 3:46 pm #

    All these recent stories are obviously driving the birther faithful nuts!

    They’ve really been stirred up and showing up here in bunches lately, like angry bees in a hornet’s nest.

    LOL!

  29. avatar
    Black Lion May 13, 2010 at 4:04 pm #

    I think it is because they see that the chance of their dream coming through, which was removal of the President in chains and taken in front of a mob jury, is becoming more remote with each passing day. The country is starting to look up and the President is looking very Presidential. That drives the birthers crazy…

  30. avatar
    Mary Brown May 14, 2010 at 12:25 am #

    This is why we say this will never end. There will always be something to keep it going. Now we have two arguments that I know of. Any certificate released would of course be a forgery and trusting the infant State of Hawaii would be foolish. You see Scott, this really is not about a birth certificate,it is about overturning an election you don’t agree with.

  31. avatar
    Mary Brown May 14, 2010 at 12:30 am #

    And they didn’t find evidence he was a foreign exchange student? I believe that had they found anything like that we would know.