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Obama birth certificate released by the president: What's really behind his inevitable decision


Obama birth certificate. Topic A of the day. And yesterday. And last week.

In an obvious attempt to keep the goofy issue alive a bit longer, President Obama finally released the long-form version of his birth certificate today.

Rather than simply post it on the White House website, Obama took six minutes of presidential time to visit the White House briefing room, where all the important media folks hang out waiting for their next important broadcast messenger assignment. Such a visit to such an important place by such an important person is guaranteed to attract maximum attention.

Of course, it worked. Would we be writing about this again without the president's appearance?

The president (full text below, as usual) said: "Now, normally I would not comment on....

...something like this, because obviously there’s a lot of stuff swirling in the press on at any given day and I've got other things to do."

President Obama said he knows the release will not put this issue six-feet under for some birther diehards, who probably haven't a clue where their own is. With a sigh, the Democrat from Chicago says he doesn't know why this issue just won't go away. Thank goodness, this fellow is patient with his people.Obama Boards Air Force One for another trip

The reason for all the interest in something that's been locked away by Hawaii state officials, of course, is simple. Obama ignored, disregarded, violated and/or cleverly played with one of the primary rules of politics, as if, golly, he just couldn't understand all the interest.

If you've got something you want the media to desperately want, tell them they can't have it. High school cheerleaders know this law of human behavior instinctively.

The president says he really, really wants to be talking instead about the crucial, pressing and also the really important real issues facing this nation in the 21st century: national security, the budget, debt limit, energy (but not gas prices).

However, sigh, there's this bunch of, well, you know, different kind of fixated people distracted by something as trivial as whether he's legally qualified to be president of the United States, as he has been for the past 827 days.

And so, as most politicians or appointees claim when forced to do something, he's going to release this long-form birth certificate -- just to end the distraction, mind you.

Which, of course, he could have done 34 months ago when the distraction first began. But the release will keep it going for one more day. And make him look good, a key bipartisan goal of any politician. And keep people busy on that while he does something else.

So, here you go. Talk amongst yourselves about this birth certificate thing. While the president and his wife fly Air Force One all the way out to Chicago for the singular purpose of repaying a syndicated television show host who helped them in the crucial early campaign days of 2007.

And then, while you're still poring over the certificate and the silliness of the entire issue, the president will be flying Air Force One all the way back to New York City tonight for not one, not two, but three Democratic fundraisers. Including one that's costing attendees more than 35G's each.

To demonstrate his equanimity, Obama will also likely make a joke during those remarks about the silly birther issue, which will make him seem like a good-natured victim of these superficial clowns who've been chasing him to do what he well knew all along they would want him to do lo these many months.



Birthers will just not give up and Obama is pleased to help them any way possible

-- Andrew Malcolm (DOB N/A)

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Statement by President Obama on his birth certificate, as provided by the White House

THE PRESIDENT:  Hello, everybody. Now, let me just comment, first of all, on the fact that I can't get the networks to break in on all kinds of other discussions -- (laughter.)  I was just back there listening to Chuck -- he was saying, it’s amazing that he’s not going to be talking about national security. I would not have the networks breaking in if I was talking about that, Chuck, and you know it.

Q    Wrong channel.  (Laughter.)  

THE PRESIDENT:  As many of you have been briefed, we provided additional information today about the site of my birth. Now, this issue has been going on for two, two and a half years now. I think it started during the campaign. And I have to say that over the last two and a half years I have watched with bemusement, I've been puzzled at the degree to which this thing just kept on going. We've had every official in Hawaii, Democrat and Republican, every news outlet that has investigated this, confirm that, yes, in fact, I was born in Hawaii, August 4, 1961, in Kapiolani Hospital.

We've posted the certification that is given by the state of Hawaii on the Internet for everybody to see. People have provided affidavits that thOprah and the Obamasey, in fact, have seen this birth certificate. And yet this thing just keeps on going. 

Now, normally I would not comment on something like this, because obviously there’s a lot of stuff swirling in the press on at any given day and I've got other things to do. But two weeks ago, when the Republican House had put forward a budget that will have huge consequences potentially to the country, and when I gave a speech about my budget and how I felt that we needed to invest in education and infrastructure and making sure that we had a strong safety net for our seniors even as we were closing the deficit, during that entire week the dominant news story wasn’t about these huge, monumental choices that we're going to have to make as a nation. It was about my birth certificate.

And that was true on most of the news outlets that were represented here.

And so I just want to make a larger point here. We've got some enormous challenges out there. There are a lot of folks out there who are still looking for work. Everybody is still suffering under high gas prices. We're going to have to make a series of very difficult decisions about how we invest in our future but also get a hold of our deficit and our debt -- how do we do that in a balanced way.

And this is going to generate huge and serious debates, important debates. And there are going to be some fierce disagreements -- and that’s good. That’s how democracy is supposed to work. And I am confident that the American people and America’s political leaders can come together in a bipartisan way and solve these problems. We always have. 

But we’re not going to be able to do it if we are distracted. We’re not going to be able to do it if we spend time vilifying each other.  We’re not going to be able to do it if we just make stuff up and pretend that facts are not facts. We’re not going to be able to solve our problems if we get distracted by sideshows and carnival barkers.

We live in a serious time right now and we have the potential to deal with the issues that we confront in a way that will make our kids and our grandkids and our great grandkids proud. And I have every confidence that America in the 21st century is going to be able to come out on top just like we always have. But we’re going to have to get serious to do it. 

I know that there’s going to be a segment of people for which, no matter what we put out, this issue will not be put to rest. But I’m speaking to the vast majority of the American people, as well as to the press. We do not have time for this kind of silliness. We’ve got better stuff to do. I’ve got better stuff to do. We’ve got big problems to solve.  And I’m confident we can solve them, but we’re going to have to focus on them -- not on this. Thanks very much, everybody.    ####

Photo: Gerald Herbert / Associated Press; Associated Press.

Comments () | Archives (87)

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We need a Supreme Court ruling on the definition of natural born. It's in the constitution for a reason as defining a classification of citizenship needed to qualify to hold the office of President. How does it differ from other citizenship and how is it devolved?

Andrew Malcolm hits the nail on the head. This is something that should have been done three years ago. The press should have done their job as the fourth column of the democracy--they should have fully vetted a man running for the highest office in the land.

Instead, the press spent more time investigating Joe the Plumbers background than candidate Obama's. The LA Times still hasn't reported on Obama misdeeds that should have been reported. Here is something from the Boston Globe in June of 2008 that went nearly unreported in other papers:

The president of the United States is still an enigma. He promises tranparency, but he must consider a very muddy pond transparent. I am so over this administration and their ethical lapses, tax problems, and pass-the-buck politics that I am really looking forward to 2012.

I don't understand the author's concern with those who want to see a birth certificate. Does he make a big deal if an employer asks an employee for it? It shouldn't have been this big of a deal, and it shouldn't have taken this long. To say that demanding one from President Obama was uncalled for would be irresponsible. The people have a right to know that he is who he says he is, regardless of what the media says or republicans say. People wanted truth, if you cannot see past that perhaps writing articles on the topic was a bit out of your skill-set.

"President Obama said he knows the release will not put this issue six-feet under for some birther diehards, who probably haven't a clue where their own is."...

Considering this was copied on 25 APR 11 the presidemt didn't know where his was either and needed the State to send him a new one. More bad journalism from Malcom.

Just like the global warming deniers who keep ignoring temperature graphs, melting ice and the fact that CO2 has been proven to trap heat, this birth certificate evidence will never suffice for the BirthManiacs.

They were never interested in evidence from the beginning. It's all about their ideology. That's why this nation continues to be mired in intractable, phony debates.

Zoom in and tell me it doesn't look edited. I could personally care less even if he wasn't born in the US, as he seems ok, but this thing has either been touched up or edited.

1) Why was this an issue in the first place? The Constitution cares who your parents were and not where you were born. McCain was born in Panama to Americans.
2) Will this stop the Birthers? Facts did not seem to have stopped those who attacked John Kerry because he was in Vietnam getting shot at instead of hiding in the Reserves in the South someplace because his father had connections.

What an awesome way to deflect discussion of the true issue, that of his dual citizenship.

The question is why did Obama spent so much money to keep this his school records and other documents sealed. Is he a brilliant person or is their something else?. The main distraction of this episode has the voters taking their eye off the really bad job he has done. Worst president since Carter.

it means born in the u.s.

"Of course, it worked. Would we be writing about this again without the president's appearance?"

Yes, yes you would.

I love the way Trump turns this into a plus for himself, despite the fact that it proves he was WRONG about this non-issue. What a jackass.

"In an obvious attempt to keep the goofy issue alive a bit longer...." ??? Seriously?? The OBVIOUS way to keep the issue alive is NOT to release it. He is putting the issue to rest. As for why you would wait this long, the OBVIOUS reason is that rational people accept the certified short form. Why cater to the irrational? Criticizing the release of the long form birth certificate as an effort to extend this controversy exposes that abject poverty of your reason and your commitment to criticize this President for any and everything he does.

This still stinks.
So you mean on Monday, April 25, 2011, all Obama needed to do was authorized the Hawaii State Registrar’s Office to send birth certificate document copy that states: “I certify this is a true copy or abstract of the record on file in the Hawaii State Department of Health.” See signed stamp from Alvin Onaka, dated April 25, 2011 on bottom of certificate. It gets FedEx’ed to the White House and it is copied and released to public on Wednesday, April 27, 2011. Really? And it is over and he never bothered to do this what—back in 2008 or 2009 or 2010??? Something is wrong. This is a news story. Obama is a fake.

This is the basic rule: "if you are born here and you are white you are qualified to be President". That's is the simple notion for Tea Party, Republican Party and a big blonde guy with funny hair who filed bankruptcy 3 times in 10 years and claimed he is the richer than any Republican candidates running for President.

This Trump guy is proven by law unable to run a business! Why would I give my vote for him?

After birth certificate he is now said: "I heard Obama did not go to College, Columbia and Harvard.."

What a deuce bag!! Let's just make him like Glenn Beck. Stop watching his show!! And for all company who advertise on his show!"? Let's stop watching that channel and stop buying their products.

How about that Trump? What a big mouth!!!

Are the individuals who signed that document alive today to attest to its authenticity?

I never worried about his birth certificate before now. Wasn't his given name "Berry" and changed to "Barack" later in life? Am I mistaken?

Its sad he is doing such a poor job for our country! I has not kept any of his promises.

I don't get it. All this time, the Obama admin has been saying that Obama already released his birth certificate. They laughed at anyone that said otherwise. What's this then? Isn't this an admission that they were lying all along? And if they were lying all along, how can we trust them now?

The tone of this article is ridiculous. The author would have us believe that it is President Obama's fault that the ridiculous birther conspiracy movement was the fault of President Obama, when in fact it is the fault of a bunch of sour grape sucking people who just can't accept that America elected someone you looks different, and has a name that sounds different then that of any other President. Obama presented the necessary documentation to prove his "native born citizen" status well before he ran for President. But for reasons that I think only a psychologist could answer, a small but vocal group of ultra conservatives decided that this documentation was not sufficient, and that there was reason to believe that Obama wasn't legally qualified to be President.

This whole issue has always defied simple logic. That the Republican party wouldn't have raised a huge legal challenge to a Democratic candidate for President, who wasn't legally qualified to be President, defies all reason. That the Democratic Party would risk their candidate for President being disqualified by reason of his citizenship or birth, and that they wouldn't have throughly researched this, defies all reason. That some Manchurian Candidate conspiracy scenario was taking place, and the best potential candidate these guys could find was a half black guy with a Muslim sounding name, defies all reason. But hell hath no fury like a voter scorned I suppose, so the outraged ultra conservative closet racists simply could not accept that America has changed enough that a mixed race man could win, and proceeded to convince themselves that there was something "funny" about this guy. AR and AK style rifle and ammo prices went through the roof, in anticipation of Obama ordering the confiscation of guns, and I suppose imposition of martial law as he forced all Americans to convert to Islam. Surely it wasn't possible that Obama was simply the moderate, intelligent, well spoken politician he seemed to be. Well this birth certificate may put the issue to rest for a small portion of the "birthers" but the real die hards will just figure Obama got to the record and doctored it.

where are the tax returns? is trump going to keep the peripheral issue of tax returns in the news for months by failing to release his tax returns immediately?

Is the patterned background extending outside the birth certificate on other birth certificates at that time? Are others also kept in a bound book?

Key at the bottom is that it is a “COPY OR ABSTRACT” (lifted summary information; not a full reproduction of the original.) Mother’s legal typed name is "Dunham." Unmarried?

Also key is whether Obama had a subsequent birth certificate after adoption by his Muslim Indonesian stepfather (after his mother married there and became an Indonesian citizen). That would have made Obama an Indonesian citizen. The US didn’t allow dual. He probably lost US citizenship and never regained it and even if he had, would not be a naturalized citizen as required to hold the office of President.

Some of you birther people are just... sad...

What about all the video's where he admits he was born in Kenya. And his wife says he was born in Kenya. This birth certificate is a forgery in his own words.

we need someone like mr. larry Flint to bring some things on Mr. trump. so that he can be trumpt

No thank you for this dramatically skewed, overtly right of middle "news piece." What a waste of time and space. The President DOES have more pressing issues. Know how difficult it is to get a county job? Think someone could work for the CIA, DOD, DIA, or FBI without an intensive background check and security clearance? It's not easy, I know. Think about that then ponder THE PRESIDENT. This was just a dumb article, pelase hire somone who has common sense to write about National political affairs.

The reason it took so long to produce a birth certificate. A birth certificate had to be located of someone who was born on the day he said he was born on Honolulu. This took some time to find such a person and see if they were dead or alive. Contact them to see if this person could be paid off. A copy of this birth certificate was used to place Obama's name on this certificate etc. A planted person had to be hired to work within the department who would allow the documents to be interchanged--change microfiche, imaging etc. While a typewriter had to be located on ebay etc that matched the font used on the original birth certificate of some person. Sounds elaborate but his could have happened and this is why it took so long. Addresses used had to be checked and all bases covered. It is interesting to find out why no one ever remembers Obama from any where.

Stuff like this really gets on my nerves.. There are lots of people that would love to see our president fale. First off I wouldn't have wanted to be the president after the mess that the last president put these country in. It will take a lot of time to get this country back in the right direstion, but they are so may people that wont allow our president to do what needed to be done, because they are worried about all the wrong thing. Most people can's even give him enough respect to call him president...

This certificate Proves beyond any shadow of doubt that republicans are drooling idiots incapable of logic or reason.

Sigh, you are right of course Andrew. But the comments posted here are disheartening. Obviously smart people who pay attention are letting themselves be trolled. The coming campaign for 2012 will be a tough uphill climb. Conservatives need to move beyond trying to delegitimize Obama and focus on the real issues. It back fired on Liberals with W and it won't hunt here either, just ask Dan Rather. By the way flying to see Oprah or 35k lunches are no more relevant than how many days W spent at the ranch or what time he left the office. The issues people, the issues.

More than a few people suspected that Obama refused to release this document for so long a time because he wanted to time that release for maximum political benefit. Nevermind the fact that millions of the American people had a genuine concern about the Constitutional requirements for the highest office in the land being followed. That Trump caused the form to be shown in 2011, rather in 2012 when it could have had much greater impact shows that Trump did in fact win this face-off. The disgusting arrogance of this speech about what Obama considers to be silly and what he considers to be important (right before heading off to be interviewed on the Oprah Show) is an added bonus.

Yes, Obama just wanted to drag this thing out for his own political gain... of course. I suppose that means all those Republicans wanted it to go away from the start, right? You know, the Republicans who would never come straight out and say "He was born here-- end of story" from the beginning? The ones who wouldn't come straight out and disavow this crap until it became a liability?

Gimme a break.

What a coincidence...he reveals the birth certificate and then 15 minutes later hops on Air Force One with his wife and mother-in-law to go film an Oprah show which has been planned for months. The show will kick off May sweeps on May 2. It's perfect. He is such a rock star!! He and Oprah are quite a team. Who cares that the country is at war, we're getting raped at the gas tanks, healthcare is in the toilet...let's distract everybody with a press conference about a birth certificate you've had all along. He will go down in history as, among many other things, the most polarizing president ever.

The Doc ID is 10641... why is there a Birth Cert of someone born about 18 hours later with a cert that has a Doc ID of 10637.... You would think the #'s would go up and not down....

Focus people! Focus!

It does not say "Birth Certificate"

It says "Certificate of live birth"


The media is pulling a quick one calling it a
birth certificate.

Date: Thu, Apr 21, 2011 at 5:20 AM
Subject: Re: Obama is NOT qualified to be our President
To: - -

This is in response to your e-mails asking about verifying an individual’s eligibility to run for President of the United States.

As you may know, the Federal Election Commission (FEC) is an independent regulatory agency with jurisdiction over the campaign financing of federal elections. The Commission enforces the limits on the sources and amounts of contributions to candidates for federal office, reviews the registration and periodic reports filed by political committees supporting federal candidates, and monitors the public funding of Presidential elections. For more information on the role of the FEC, please consult the brochure, “FEC and the Federal Campaign Finance Law” on the FEC website.

In regards to your concerns about the verification of qualifications and/or citizenship for presidential candidates (or other candidates for federal office), please note that these issues do not fall within the FEC's jurisdiction. The Commission was established solely to administer and enforce the federal campaign finance laws. As such, it does not have the legal authority to investigate a candidate's citizenship or other qualifications for office.

Thank you for your inquiry. For future questions regarding the federal campaign finance law, please contact staff in the Information Division at 1-800-424-9530 (press #6 when prompted).

Amy Kort
Deputy Assistant Staff Director
Information Division

Certificate of Live Birth.
Yep that's what you'll get if you ask for a copy of your birth certificate.

The President can not understand why this has gone on for as long as it has???
Well sir I suggest you look in the mirror, This has only been an issue because you until now have allowed it to be one. What you did in releasing your birth record could have and should have been done years ago, but even thou I am not a Harvard grad I can see why you would wait. It seems to me that everytime a real news story broke about policy or an issue that effects millions of Americans somehow, some way this birth record issue always took hold of the news media, thus deflecting away any of the more series questions about your presidency.
"And that's the way it was" Walter Kronkite

The president could have released a cake recipe and it wouldn't matter. The right wing bone head republicans are too stupid to be able to read. They can go back to searching for big foot and ufos.

All birth certificates are to have an embossed state/city seal and I don't see one on the entry log or the copy. A birth log bound with a multitude of others wouldn't appear to me to be original but instead a journal. Also a registrar is a state/city vital statistics division head, not a practicing physician. I'm sure there are more discrepancy including the politically correct term African which was not used on birth certificates in 1961.

I could create a much prettier birth certificate in much less time. In fact, most children could pull it off. Not impressed.

To make it a worthwhile investment of time the document should be mass produced and sold with the proceeds going to help the starving politicians that are struggling to survive in this country. Or maybe the proceeds should be handed out to unemployed drug addicts so they will be able to score their next bag of drugs. Better yet, just cut to the chase and hand out the drugs. At least that would ensure that a portion of the population won't question anything that is happening in this country, nor complain about having a President in office that is "possibly" not qualified to be there. Does it really matter? Elmer Fudd could fill that office and nothing would change because the Presidency has become nothing more than front for the real power that rules the world. Bummer.

I was born in Mighigan. I too have a certificate of live birth, but I also have a certified Birth Certificate. In the times I have had to prove my identity it has not been with a certificate of live birth, it has been with a Certified Birth Certificate.

Hello people, there is a difference.

well FINALLY why didnt he just put this out there 3 years ago?? this article is biased against birthers until today they had every right to question Obama's citizenship. now that he released it thats the end of that.

Obama's birth certificate looks phony to me. Why is this one the same color as the other one he showed? I was born in 1961 but my birth certificate is centered on black paper and wtitten with white ink.

What an obvious left wing liberal point of view, but what else would you expect from the LA TImes. This document should have been released before he was allowed to run for President. When this reporter refers to citizens that want to make sure the Constitution of this country is upheld as "Clowns" he shows his bias and destroys the credibility of his reporting and this news paper.

He is from the USA and so am i . We the people stand together on this why other President have not been ask for there Birth Certificat in the past. Is this
because he is Black ? This is real sad when we come down to this.

To all the ignorant people who fell prey to this false statement: "BOOYAH"!
I am ashamed to say I am one of the average white people that did not stop the emails from coming through my email.
Now, I will post a message apologizing for my lack of loyalty, after all I am an intelligent person.

Anyone who has ever had a child in a USA hospital knows that the "live record of birth" is what is given to you before you leave the hospital. It is up to the parents to
go to the county seat to get the official document known as a birth certificate. I was give a kit when I had my dauthter
28 years ago. The average intelligence of the population is what I am really ashamed of. Anyone who runs for the office of Commander in Chief has to clear a security risk beyond belief! Don't you think they know where he was born? Donald Trump, what an idiot you are to have all the money you have.!You need to APPOLOGIZE TO THE PRESIDENT!

So, were all blacks born in Hawaii at that time labeled as "African" for the race of their father? Interesting to check out. Rather find out how he could have signed the draft registration form version that was not in existance the day he supposedly signed it.

Does anyone remember that he changed his name??? He was born BARRY SOTERO, NOT Barrack!!! Just another fabricated piece of junk from a man who, unfortunately, is able to con most Americans

This is NOT A BIRTH CERTIFICATE. It is a certificate of live birth. You can't even use this as a form of ID to get a marriage lisence. There is no state seal, it is only certification of live birth. He was born in Kenya, that's where his real birth certificate comes from. This is a joke!

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About the Columnist
A veteran foreign and national correspondent, Andrew Malcolm has served on the L.A. Times Editorial Board and was a Pulitzer finalist in 2004. He is the author of 10 nonfiction books and father of four. Read more.
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