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Supremes to review citizenship arguments

Posted By Bob Unruh On 11/20/2008 @ 1:10 am In Uncategorized | Comments Disabled

A case that challenges President-elect Barack Obama’s name on the 2008 election ballot citing questions over his citizenship has been scheduled for a “conference” at the U.S. Supreme Court.

Conferences are private meetings of the justices at which they review cases and decide which ones to accept for formal review. This case is set for a conference Dec. 5, just 10 days before the Electoral College is scheduled to meet to make formal the election of Obama as the nation’s next president.

The Supreme Court’s website listed the date for the case brought by Leo C. Donofrio against Nina Wells, the secretary of state in New Jersey, over not only Obama’s name on the 2008 election ballot but those of two others, Sen. John McCain and Roger Calero.

The case, unsuccessful at the state level, had been submitted to Justice David Souter, who rejected it. The case then was resubmitted to Justice Clarence Thomas. The next line on the court’s docket says: “DISTRIBUTED for Conference of December 5, 2008.”


If four of the nine justices vote to hear the case in full, oral argument may be scheduled.

The action questions whether any of the three candidates is qualified under the U.S. Constitution’s requirement that a president be a “natural-born citizen.”

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According to America’s Right blogger Jeff Schreiber, there also was a development in a second case presented to the Supreme Court on the same issue.

His report said the Federal Election Commission now has waived its right to respond to a complaint brought by attorney Philip Berg.


“There are a number of reasons why the respondents here would choose not to respond. First, because the court only grants between 70 and 120 of the 8,000 or so petitions it receives every year, perhaps they just liked their odds of Berg’s petition getting denied. Second, because they have made arguments as to Berg’s lack of standing several times at the district court level and beyond, perhaps they felt as though any arguments had already been made and were available on the record. Or, perhaps the waiver shows that the FEC and other respondents do not take seriously the allegations put forth by Berg, and did not wish to legitimize the claims with a response,” the blogger speculated.

“Another thing which is not completely clear is whether the FEC is filing for itself or on behalf of all respondents,” he added.

“If it were just the FEC filing the waiver, I must say that I’m surprised,” Berg told America’s Right. “I’m surprised because I think they should take the position that the Supreme Court should grant standing to us. I think they have a responsibility not only to Phil Berg, but to all citizens of this country, to put forth a sense of balance which otherwise doesn’t seem to exist.

“However, if this was filed by the FEC on behalf of the DNC and Barack Obama too, it reeks of collusion,” he said, noting that the attorney from the solicitor general’s office should be representing federal respondents and not the DNC or Obama.

But he noted that “questions surrounding this aspect of Obama’s candidacy are seemingly beginning to see the light of day.”

Just last week, WND reported on worries over a “constitutional crisis” that could be looming over the issue of Obama’s citizenship.

Former presidential candidate Alan Keyes and others filed a court petition in California asking the secretary of state to refuse to allow the state’s 55 Electoral College votes to be cast in the 2008 presidential election until Obama verifies his eligibility to hold the office.

Alan Keyes

The disputes all cite “natural-born citizen” requirement set by the U.S. Constitution.

WND senior reporter Jerome Corsi even traveled to Kenya and Hawaii prior to the election to investigate issues surrounding Obama’s birth. But his research and discoveries only raised more questions.

The biggest question is why Obama, if a Hawaii birth certificate exists as his campaign has stated, simply hasn’t ordered it made available to settle the rumors.

The governor’s office in Hawaii said there is a valid certificate but rejected requests for access and left ambiguous its origin: Does the certificate on file with the Department of Health indicate a Hawaii birth or was it generated after the Obama family registered a Kenyan birth in Hawaii?

Obama’s half-sister, Maya Soetoro, has named two different Hawaii hospitals where Obama could have been born. There have been other allegations that Obama actually was born in Kenya during a time when his father was a British subject.

The California action was filed by Gary Kreep of the United States Justice Foundation on behalf of Keyes, the presidential candidate of the American Independent Party, along with Wiley S. Drake and Markham Robinson, both California electors.

“Should Senator Obama be discovered, after he takes office, to be ineligible for the Office of President of the United States of America and, thereby, his election declared void, Petitioners, as well as other Americans, will suffer irreparable harm in that (a) usurper will be sitting as the President of the United States, and none of the treaties, laws, or executive orders signed by him will be valid or legal,” the action challenges.

An Obama spokesman interviewed by WND described such lawsuits as “garbage.”

The popular vote Nov. 4 favored Obama over Sen. John McCain by several percentage points. But because of the distribution of the votes, Obama is projected to take the Electoral College vote, when it is held in December, by a 2-to-1 margin.

The California case states, “There is a reasonable and common expectation by the voters that to qualify for the ballot, the individuals running for office must meet minimum qualifications as outlined in the federal and state Constitutions and statutes, and that compliance with those minimum qualifications has been confirmed by the officials overseeing the election process,” the complaint said, when in fact the only documentation currently required is a signed statement from the candidate attesting to those qualifications.

“Since [the secretary of state] has, as its core, the mission of certifying and establishing the validity of the election process, this writ seeks a Court Order barring SOS from certifying the California Electors until documentary proof that Senator Obama is a ‘natural born’ citizen of the United States of America is received by her,” the document said.

“This proof could include items such as his original birth certificate, showing the name of the hospital and the name and the signature of the doctor, all of his passports with immigration stamps, and verification from the governments where the candidate has resided, verifying that he did not, and does not, hold citizenship of these countries, and any other documents that certify an individual’s citizenship and/or qualification for office.

The “certificate of live birth” posted by the Obama campaign cannot be viewed as authoritative, the case alleges.

“Hawaii Revised Statute 338-178 allows registration of birth in Hawaii for a child that was born outside of Hawaii to parents who, for a year preceding the child’s birth, claimed Hawaii as their place of residence,” the document said. “The only way to know where Senator Obama was actually born is to view Senator Obama’s original birth certificate from 1961 that shows the name of the hospital and the name and signature of the doctor that delivered him.”

The case also raises the circumstances of Obama’s time during his youth in Indonesia, where he was listed as having Indonesian citizenship. Indonesia does not allow dual citizenship, raising the possibility of Obama’s mother having given up his U.S. citizenship.

Any subsequent U.S. citizenship then, the case claims, would be “naturalized,” not “natural-born.”

WND has reported other challenges that have been raised in Ohio, Connecticut, Washington, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Georgia and Hawaii.


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