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Alan Keyes stokes Obama birth certificate controversy

February 21, 2009 | 12:51 am

The controversy over the validity of Barack Obama's birth certificate is back on a burner with firebrand conservative Alan Keyes making serious new charges.

In a video (see below) released Friday, Keyes, who lost to Obama in the 2004 U.S. Senate race in Illinois that launched the new president's national political career, calls Obama a communist and usurper and says he refuses to acknowledge the validity of Obama's inauguration over lingering questions in the minds of many conspiracists about the 44th president's birthplace.

The U.S. Constitution requires any president be born an American citizen.

In June, the Obama campaign released to The Ticket a copy of the then-senator's Hawaiian birth certificate (see the jump below and also here). But stubbornly persistent critics demand to see the original, which the state has refused to provide, citing personal privacy reasons.

And the critics, including Keyes explaining here, cite Obama relatives in Kenya as saying he was actually born there in his father's native land when his American mother was too young to pass on her U.S. citizenship.

In December, as The Ticket reported here, the Supreme Court dismissed without comment a New Jersey lawsuit seeking to bar Obama's inauguration due to questions over his actual citizenship. The Obama camp has proceeded normally as if there was no controversy.

Obviously, the inauguration proceeded, although on the advice of White House counsel as a precaution against a verbal muff during the noontime Jan. 20 public ceremony, Obama did take the presidential oath again that night in private with Chief Justice John Roberts. His White House lawyer feared igniting another simmering legal controversy if there was any doubt about the oath's validity, although the Constitution stipulates the new president takes office at noon no matter what.

However, the dispute over his birthplace continues. Listen here to Keyes' rather strong language.

This simmering dispute, occurring online and in e-mails coursing daily across the Internet, seems unlikely to evaporate any time soon.

-- Andrew Malcolm

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Barack Obama's birth certificate copy as released by his presidential campaign in June 2008

Click on the Obama birth certificate image to enlarge.

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