Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Impeach them all: Obama's Birth Certificate: What's He Hiding?

Monday, December 15, 2008 6:38 PM

Today two significant things happened concerning an ongoing controversy about President-Elect Obama. One: the Electoral College declared him the victor in the November 4 election. Two: the Supreme Court decided, without comment, not to issue a stay or injunction in the case Wrotnowski v. Bysiewicz, in which Obama's status as a natural born US citizen, meeting the Article Two Constitutional standard for the presidency, was questioned.

So why the fuss? This. On a website subtitled "Obama Action Wire: Stay up to date on right wing smears," Obama presented a document bearing the State of Hawaii seal, which attests that he was born in Honolulu on August 4, 1961, naming "Barack Hussein Obama II" as his father. In the fine print at the bottom of the document it is stated, "This copy serves as prima facie evidence of the fact of birth in any court proceeding." Case closed? End of story? Not quite.

One thing stands out on the document. At the top right, there is a certificate number which has been blocked out, or in CIA jargon, "redacted." Why?

The document makes it clear that it is a copy of something, namely an original. On October 31, 2008, Dr. Chiyome Fukino, Director of the Hawaii Department of Health, issued a statement, saying, in part, that "the Hawaii State Department of Health has Sen. Obama's original birth certificate on record in accordance with state policies and procedures."

Tennesseean Michael Patrick Leahy, a conservative author and Republican Party strategist who created the website and organization Top Conservatives on Twitter, called the Department to ask twelve questions, which were not answered, among them: Did you personally view an actual physical copy of the long form original birth certificate from August 4, 1961 signed by the attending physician at a Honolulu hospital?

Why hasn't the President-Elect requested that a scanned copy of the original certificate be released? Why is the certificate number blacked out on the document posted by Obama on his "fightthesmears.com" website? Dr. Fukino announced that the orginal is "on record." Does that mean that it currently exists? Or is there only a record that it once existed, and has been destroyed, is lost, missing, or legally sealed?

Is Obama hiding something? If so, what? Or if he is not hiding something, is he merely resisting the call to reveal the original, because, well, because he can?

Personally, I think that Obama is hiding something. I personally think that "natural born citizen" issue is too narrow in scope. Also, I have serious doubts that the US Supreme Court is going to subpoena the original birth certificate. It is a question of fact, not a question of Constitutional law.

I was not the best student in my eighth grade civics class, but I do believe that there are two institutions set up to vet any Presidential candidate: the Electoral College and the Congress. The latter can subpoena the original birth certificate, but will they? Fat chance. The former, the electors, have already voted for Obama without questioning his credentials.

So where does this leave us? It leaves us with a President-Elect who will be inaugurated on January 20, 2009, and with a missing birth certificate whose unique number is unknown to the American public, which may or may not contain information in addition to or inconsistent with the copy distributed by the Obama campaign, and which may or may not exist at the time I am writing this blogpost.

Does any of this matter? If Obama is hiding something important, it does. And I do not think this issue is going to go away after the inauguration. I think it is going to dog Obama for the rest of his term as President.

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