Ben Smith, at the Politico blog, joins the conventional chorus of down-shouters, marginalizing everyone with doubts on the question of Barack Obama’s native born status as irrational conspiracy theorists.
Personally, I always experience a dramatic increase in skepticism when I observe the argument from intimidation underway. Whenever people point to a bien pensant media consensus as established and inarguable fact, I start looking around for the alternative theory.
As to Obama’s native born status, I’ve read Internet rumors that say his grandmother supposedly said some time somewhere that he was born in a hospital in Kenya, but I’ve never seen any form of reliable report confirming that.
I’m well aware, and support the fact, that the United States traditionally bases citizenship both on jus sanguinis (citizenship by right of blood descent) and jus soli (citizenship by right of birth on US soil). I also think that if a person elected to national office by 60-odd million votes as the result of a process as expensive, time-consuming, and elaborate as a US Presidential election were to be disqualified by an arcane, subsequently eliminated, technical and ill-conceived provision of 1960s era citizenship laws, that it would be a disaster.
But I do also think the law is the law, and Barack Obama’s citizenship status, which undoubtedly features a number of occasions for questions, ought to have been thoroughly and openly explored before the democrat party ever nominated him.
I think it is probable that democrat party member state officials in Hawaii are telling the truth, and Obama’s birth certificate is real, valid, and in proper order, but I also wonder, if that is the case, why has he spent more than $800,000 (at last count, which was some time ago), fighting lawsuits in numerous states to resist allowing it to be released.
Obama’s effort and expense at litigating only makes sense if there is something to hide. (In an earlier post, I suggested that perhaps he was really named Sue.)
Beyond the alleged birth in Kenya to a slightly underage US citizen mom, there are also obviously live possibilities of problems with conflicting dual citizenships held contrary to US law. Obama might very well have been adopted by Mr. Soetero. His admission to Indonesian schools apparently required Indonesian citizenship. If Obama lost his US citizenship by adoption as a juvenile, he would have had to take official steps later to restore it.
Obama could have in the past claimed to be a British subject by virtue of his father’s Kenyan nationality. It is reported that Obama travelled to Pakistan in 1981, at a time when US citizens were not allowed to enter the country. Those circumstances suggest he could have used a different passport at the time.
There can be no doubt that the national news reporting organizations allowed political partisanship to deter them from undertaking the questioning and scrutiny of the candidacy of Barack Obama that would normally be expected. It would not be hard to argue that, at this point, the country would be better off, our electoral processes better served, simply by averting our eyes from what is bound to be, at most, some technical disqualification, faced with plunging the country into an appalling and unprecedented leadership crisis (and perhaps making that idiot Biden president), but it is simply not true that no rational basis for skepticism of Barack Obama’s eligibility for office exists.