Main Menu

Archive | Birther Politics

Birther boomerang

I consider this a very important article because without this article and the information following, the “Mailbox 11/7/2014” article would just stay at the top of the blog and I don’t think anybody wants that. I would really rather flip the page to something else.

The boomerang is the birther theory of the meaning of “natural born citizen,” a theory consistently rejected by legal scholars and the courts. The idea that a US President must be born in the United States of two US citizen parents was cooked up to try to make Barack Obama seem ineligible, and the boomerang returning is the effect this may have on certain conservative presidential hopefuls. In a poll this past May, a fairly significant number of potential voters believe it, and I wonder whether any Republican candidate can receive the presidential nomination who was born outside the United States, or has a non-US-citizen parent.

The occasion is a new article at Gerbil Report™ by Paul Hollrah titled “No, Ted Cruz is Not Eligible to be President.” Hollrah singles out more potential candidates than just Cruz—here’s his take on things:

Ted Cruz Born in Canada, foreign father
Bobby Jindal Born in US, two foreign national parents
Marco Rubio Born in US, two foreign national parents
Rick Santorum Born in US, foreign father

I don’t know whether Santorum’s father, who was born in Italy, was a naturalized citizen or not when Rick Santorum was born, but for the purpose of this discussion it doesn’t matter because we’re not really talking about facts but rumors. Have the birthers poisoned the well for these 4 potential presidential candidates? In a remotely close primary race, the birther nonsense seems to be something that would decide it against them. The disinformation factor was well-stated by the polling company, YouGov, who wrote:

That means more than half of Republicans (53%) would disqualify Texas Senator Ted Cruz from the Presidency on principle.  Cruz was born in Canada to a mother who was an American citizen, while his father was not.   But fewer than one in four Republicans think Cruz was born outside the country; only 10% know his mother was a citizen and his father was not.

imageSome suggest that my Senator, Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, will be a candidate for President in 2016. I can just see him running against Hillary Clinton. The whole race would be about Benghazi. Ugh!

Why is Clinton smiling?

The new political balance

After a long night’s sleep recovering from a long day working the polls, I awoke this morning to news of a Republican House and a Republican Senate majority starting next year.

Birthers believe that just about everybody knows deep down, and that everybody includes members of Congress, that Barack Obama’s biography is false and his identity documents are fakes. If that is truly the case, then what is to prevent those in Congress, the majority of whom are not of the President’s party, from holding investigations, passing resolutions and even starting impeachment proceedings against the President based on those beliefs of identity fraud? I can see nothing blocking such outcomes except the falsity of the birthers’ underlying premise that people in Congress believe the nonsense birther conspiracy theories.

I do not know what the effect of new voter ID laws has had on this election. All the votes in South Carolina have not been tallied, but so far it is the lowest voter turnout in any election for which the South Carolina Elections Commission provides data (since 1984). At my precinct, every voter had an ID, but publicity about the law may have kept others from trying. Whatever the cause, most South Carolinians did not vote yesterday, something that has happened only one other time since 1984. We turned away two voters, neither of whom was registered to vote. Lines were not long and even at peak times, I doubt that anyone waited more than 15 minutes.

Read more:

Congressman Gowdy: Not a birther

My Congressman, Trey Gowdy (R-SC), has been pretty far out there in his criticism of the Obama Administration, so I decided to ask him point blank whether he’s a birther or not. I was a little surprised to get a reply to such a provocative question, but reply he did:

October 29, 2014

Dear Mr. Davidson:

Photo of Trey GowdyThank you for contacting me about President Obama’s right to hold the office of the presidency. I appreciate hearing from you.

Like you, I believe the Constitution must be our nation’s guiding document, including its provisions specifying the requirements that must be met for an individual to hold the office of President. President Obama was qualified to run for this office by the Federal Election Commission, and courts have dismissed all lawsuits challenging his status as a natural born citizen of the United States. As such, I believe President Obama to be the legitimately elected leader of our nation.

Thank you again for contacting me, and please do not hesitate to do so in the future. It is an honor to serve you and the 4th Congressional District.

Sincerely,
(signed)
Trey Gowdy
Member of Congress

Bless his heart.

imageRep. Gowdy (chairman of the House Select Committee to investigate the 2012 Benghazi attack) does not have a Democratic opponent in the 2014 4th District House of Representatives election, but is opposed by Libertarian candidate Curtis McLaughlin. Gowdy is favored to win. Some have suggested (here and here) that Gowdy should be elected the next Speaker of the House.

Gowdy was rated 0% by the National Hispanic Leadership Agenda, and 100% by the National Retail Federation, the National Association of Manufacturers and the National Federation of Independent Business.

Read more:

Birthers factor in Maryland election

Just two days ago tweets from Donald Trump, tied by a USA Today reporter to the fake Barry Soetoro Columbia University student ID, found their way into the news. Now another tweet, this time republished by Republican candidate for Maryland state comptroller, William Campbell, has become an issue in his campaign.

The Delmarva Daily Times reports this 2013 entry from Campbell’s Facebook page:

635497650883002463-campbell-obama-screenshot

Note Campbell’s comment, “He does look like Travon (sic), doesn’t he?”

The newspaper is quick to note that the ID image is faked: the digital barcode wasn’t used in 1981, and the Obama photo was from Harvard.

When questioned, Campbell said that he didn’t remember the post, and:

I have other issues with his governance, but I don’t believe in that birther stuff.

This is not the only injection of birtherism into Maryland Politics. Democratic candidate for Maryland’s governor, Anthony Brown, has sent out a mailer raising the issue. This image was reported by The Daily Record in Baltimore:

Collage including image of Donald Trump and "Where's the Birth Certificate?" billboard

Brown is a strong favorite to win.

The other way to remove President Obama

Of all the improbable scenario’s to remove President Obama from office, there is one that the birthers missed. They don’t have to prove anything. They don’t have to find “high crimes.” All they have to do is pass a Constitutional amendment to do away with the executive branch of government.

This solution is not entirely out of the blue, because it’s happening in my own town. While everybody attempting to change our Mayor-Council form of government to a Council form says it’s not about personalities, digging into the issue always leads to a number of problems centering on the current mayor. One allegation says that one of the Mayor’s cronies used a city Air Card to run up a $500 bill one month, including watching the classic film, “Lesbian Vampire Killers” (that got quite a reaction at the town meeting). Whatever the details, one objective fact is that we have a 150% turnover rate in town staff and to quote one councilmember, “that’s a problem.”

Those who want a change are not just banging their keyboards in protest, but have gone through the legal process to call a special election, scheduled for next Tuesday.