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Birther progress

We often focus on the 140 lawsuits that the birthers have lost as evidence that birthers are complete and utter failures; however, I would like to look at it another way and highlight the progress the birthers have made.

Initially birthers had doubts about where Barack Obama was born, the lack of precedent precisely defining “natural born citizen,” and questions about whose responsibility it is to verify a President’s eligibility. In these core areas, I think the birthers have made a lot of progress.

First, because of birthers, we now have Barack Obama’s birth certificates in the public record, and iron-clad verification of their validity from the State of Hawaii residing today on the Arizona Secretary of State’s web site. The first area of doubt has been resolved fully. That’s a win for the birthers.

The second point still lacks a simple declaratory statement from the US Supreme Court, but precedent is building up at the state level, and the federal district court level, at least so far as the citizenship of persons like Barack Obama is concerned. We have several cases that say that those born in the country, whether of citizen or alien parents, are natural born citizens, and eligible to run for President, and the courts have straightened out the birther misreading of Minor v. Happersett.

Finally I see precedent building in the courts that the eligibility of presidential candidates is not the responsibility of the states, nor the courts during the election process. It seems to me a tremendous stroke of bad luck that birthers have not been able to adjudicate eligibility in state court. If the Florida statute had been written differently, someone might have been able to raise a challenge to the preference primary, or if New Jersey had required presidential candidates to file an affirmative statement of eligibility, someone might have had a shot at adjudicating the birther question there. But as it is, the combination of law and standing have not come together and because of that we haven’t gotten much precedent as to whether state cases like this are allowed by the Constitution. Still, we begin to see the courts defining the legitimate process for vetting eligibility. I wrote about this topic in more detail in:

but the short version is that it appears that states may not regulate who political parties run for President. It is the Electoral College and the Congress who provide the final check that the President is eligible. It remains an open question whether an objection to the action of Congress is judiciable, and it will likely remain an open question for this election cycle since only a major party’s losing candidate (or perhaps the Attorney General) would have standing to sue and I can’t imagine any doing that.

So really the birthers have won. They now know Barack Obama was born in Hawaii; they know that the children of aliens born in the United States are eligible to the Presidency, and they know that the Congress is there to make sure nothing goes wrong. It was a long an torturous road, but they have arrived and to borrow a phrase from Professor Dumbledore in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone:

Well done, birthers. Well done.

There are some birthers, I should add, that don’t seem to be ready to celebrate their success, perhaps because they find happiness in the race itself. The anti-birthers have won as well but have less to celebrate, having know the outcome all along.

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20 Responses to Birther progress

  1. avatar
    JPotter July 12, 2012 at 12:56 pm #

    … perhaps because they find happiness in the race itself.

    Apparently they do, as they insist on keepin’ on keepin’ on 😉

  2. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy July 12, 2012 at 12:59 pm #

    I have a doctor’s appointment this afternoon to have my tongue removed from my cheek.

  3. avatar
    Sam the Centipede July 12, 2012 at 1:14 pm #

    Without tongue in cheek, anti-birthers have a couple of incidental wins. The courts have demonstrated that they can make good decisions, even if they failed to prevent or curtail this abuse of their services. And this nonsense also flushed out some of the more distasteful Republicans who will hitch their waggons to any dead and rotting horse if they think there might be a vote or two in it for them.

  4. avatar
    Rickey July 12, 2012 at 1:24 pm #

    We also should applaud the fact that our judges have not allowed their political biases to color their decisions. The birther cases have been tossed by Republican judges, Democratic judges, conservative judges, and liberal judges. Even Clarence Thomas has refused to entertain the rantings of birthers.

  5. avatar
    JPotter July 12, 2012 at 1:34 pm #

    Dr. Conspiracy: I have a doctor’s appointment this afternoon to have my tongue removed from my cheek.

    Oral occlusions? Metastasized mandible? Glossal glomeration? Lingual latching? Pointed macroglossia?

    Seriously, this is the finest write-up of the “birthers are winning!” theme to date. If only they started with questions instead of answers, they would be so proud, and rightly so, just like Birfer-daddy Trump!

    I must also say that the birthers’ humility is beyond reproach. Any time you note their successes, they play coy, dumb, or even get outright indignant! They refuse all credit. Such a modest, unassuming bunch, those birthers.

  6. avatar
    donna July 12, 2012 at 1:54 pm #

    let’s see if birther trump gets a speaking invite at the gop convention

    he was just awarded the ‘Statesman of the Year’ Honor

    a few more tresses added to his mop

    he will be all birther beloved if he throws birther beef at the convention

  7. avatar
    Rob July 12, 2012 at 1:57 pm #

    Seems like with such an enticing headline, someone should start a thread with this article over at FR. Reactions should be interesting.

  8. avatar
    BillTheCat July 12, 2012 at 2:17 pm #

    Is this the “winning” that Sammy was referring to? 😉

  9. avatar
    richCares July 12, 2012 at 2:56 pm #

    birtherMingle.com has a promotion featuring a special on frogs (for the frog marching), they highly anticipate the indentity of the forger to be revealed on 7/17/2012. That’s where Sheriff Joe produces the affydayvid of the forger,the name of the forger will be kept secret and the signature on the affydayvid will be “xxx”, what a great day for birthers. After Joe’s presentation, you weil be directed to a pay pal site. click it birther.

  10. avatar
    Andrew Vrba (PmG) July 12, 2012 at 3:17 pm #

    They’re winning in the same sense that Charlie Sheen was winning.

  11. avatar
    alg July 12, 2012 at 4:18 pm #

    Birthers have done a remarkable job helping to establish an astonishing body of case law that affirms the eligibility of Mr. Barack Obama to serve as President. Well done all!

  12. avatar
    Foggy July 12, 2012 at 4:54 pm #

    Breaking news, folks. Orly has a new lawsuit in California. She says all the primary results need to be thrown out because:

    1) She lost her race to be the Republican nominee to replace DiFi, and,

    2) President Obama is … wait for it … ineligible.

    So obviously there was massive fraud and none of the primary results can be certified.

    We should have the relevant documents on Scribd very soon.

  13. avatar
    Thrifty July 12, 2012 at 5:00 pm #

    I am greatly amused that Orly took the following facts:

    1) Polling ahead of the California Senate primary gave her a lead.
    2) She lost the actual primary.

    And from that she draws not the logical conclusion, that the less formal polling was flawed, but rather that the more strictly controlled voting was corrupt.

    Foggy:
    Breaking news, folks. Orly has a new lawsuit in California. She says all the primary results need to be thrown out because:

    1) She lost her race to be the Republican nominee to replace DiFi, and,

    2) President Obama is … wait for it … ineligible.

    So obviously there was massive fraud and none of the primary results can be certified.

    We should have the relevant documents on Scribd very soon.

  14. avatar
    donna July 12, 2012 at 5:32 pm #

    Foggy:

    thanks for the ROAR

    laughing at these people has increased my life expectancy

    Thrifty: “And from that she draws not the logical conclusion, that the less formal polling was flawed, but rather that the more strictly controlled voting was corrupt.”

    if there had been “logical conclusions” from the birthers, this would have ended in 08 and we would have never met DOC et al ….. a GREAT loss

    CA – Orly v – Election Challenge

    http://nativeborncitizen.wordpress.com/2012/07/12/ca-orly-v-election-challenge/

  15. avatar
    JPotter July 12, 2012 at 5:48 pm #

    Thrifty: I am greatly amused that Orly took the following facts:1) Polling ahead of the California Senate primary gave her a lead.2) She lost the actual primary.And from that she draws not the logical conclusion, that the less formal polling was flawed, but rather that the more strictly controlled voting was corrupt.

    Ho-lee-Kee-rap! Of course she is suing because she lost (what else would she do?), but that’s her logic? Her cherrypicked, flawed poll(s) told her she was leading? Not the first time this flawed logic has been cited, but probably the dumbest.

    Her chosen polls were lampooned far and wide back in March …. remember this story?

    Laguna Niguel attorney Orly Taitz, known nationwide for efforts to prove President Barack Obama is not a natural-born citizen, is leading the Republican field in the reelection bid of U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., according to a poll by another Republican in the race.

    Taitz is the best known of the candidates, thanks to her numerous suits against Obama, and polls at 19 percent among Republican voters, according to the poll by Los Angeles businessman Al Ramirez. Ramirez places second at 15 percent. Danville autism advocate Elizabeth Emken received the state GOP’s endorsement on Sunday but was tied for last place at 2 percent in the Ramirez poll.

    The fact of the matter, though, is that few have heard of most of the candidates – 38 percent responded they didn’t know who they’d vote for if the election were held today.

    What the heck kinda “reliable” poll is that? Held by a candidate? A poll of only Red voters in a majority Blue state? And 38% of’em were undecided?!? Headed into an open, nonpartisan primary?

    Could you design a less relevant poll?

  16. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy July 12, 2012 at 5:52 pm #

    This article is not about the false birthers that are just political operatives, racists, crypto-facists, and xenophobes who use the birther platform to express their black-hearted bigotry. This article is not about those evil persons who have reaped nothing but derision and ridicule, nor is it about those persons who are mentally defective. It is not about the con men who use birtherism to bilk the unsuspecting of their cash. Those folks have made no progress at all.

  17. avatar
    Andrew Vrba (PmG) July 12, 2012 at 6:08 pm #

    WOW! Talk about a sore loser!

  18. avatar
    Lancelot Link July 13, 2012 at 4:10 am #

    Dr. Conspiracy: It is not about the con men who use birtherism to bilk the unsuspecting of their cash. Those folks have made no progress at all.

    I would have to disagree, there. Some of those folks have apparently made quite a bit of progress in their chosen aim, ie, parting fools from their money.

  19. avatar
    The Magic M July 13, 2012 at 5:31 am #

    > It seems to me a tremendous stroke of bad luck that birthers have not been able to adjudicate eligibility in state court.

    Has someone examined the approx. 18 states they have filed challenges in compared to the 32 states where they haven’t (yet) with regard to the respective state’s laws?
    It might be interesting to see if they “accidentally” omitted those states where the law might actually give them a chance and have only filed in states where they knew they couldn’t even pass the formal requirements? (Remember I have said at least a year ago that birthers in general do not seem to seek rulings on the merits but rather prefer being thrown out on procedural issues because that provides better propaganda value.)

  20. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy July 13, 2012 at 5:53 pm #

    That thought had crossed my mind; however, while I might believe this of some of the big players, I don’t see how they could prevent a lone birther from filing in an accommodating state if one existed.

    The Magic M: It might be interesting to see if they “accidentally” omitted those states where the law might actually give them a chance and have only filed in states where they knew they couldn’t even pass the formal requirements?