Bob Unruh joined WND in 2006 after nearly three decades with the Associated Press, as well as several Upper Midwest newspapers, where he covered everything from legislative battles and sports to tornadoes and homicidal survivalists. He is also a photographer whose scenic work has been used commercially.More ↓Less ↑
President Obama has been named in dozens of civil lawsuits alleging he is not eligible to be president, with one man even filing a criminal complaint alleging the commander-in-chief is a fraud, and now a citizen grand jury in Georgia has indicted the sitting president.
The indictment delivered to state and federal prosecutors yesterday is one of the developments in the dispute over Obama’s eligibility to be president under the U.S. Constitution’s requirement that presidents be “natural born” citizens.
Orly Taitz, a California attorney working on several of the civil actions, also announced she has filed another Quo Warranto case in the District of Columbia, where, she told WND, the statutes acknowledge that procedure.
The Quo Warranto claim essentially calls on Obama to explain by what authority he has assumed the power of the presidency.
Georgia resident Carl Swensson, whose work is detailed on his Rise up for America website, told WND he got tired of the issues over Obama’s eligibility, as well as his performance in office.
“I took it upon myself to find as many patriots as I could across the state, for the purpose of seating 25 for a grand jury,” he said.
Over the weekend the jurors took sworn testimony from several sources, including Taitz, and then generated an indictment that later was forwarded to the U.S. attorney, the state attorney general and others in law enforcement across the state.
Swensson cites on his website as authority for the grand jury the Magna Carta, the bill of rights that formed the foundation of British common law on which U.S. law is based.
He said the members were chosen, sworn in and observed all of the rules of procedure. Swensson declined to elaborate on the specific allegations about Obama, telling WND that remains confidential at this point because of the possibility of a prosecution.
However, the website explanation of the procedure includes some intimidating language.
“If the government does not amend the error within 40 days after being shown the error, then the four members shall refer the matter to the remainder of the grand jury,” it says. “The grand jury may distrain and oppress the government in every way in their power, namely, by taking the homes, lands, possessions, and any way else they can until amends shall have been made according to the sole judgment of the grand jury.”
Swensson said the indictments were delivered to the U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Georgia, state officials and leaders of the Georgia Senate and House.
He told WND that since the action in Georgia, he’s been contacted by groups in at least 20 other states who want to pursue a similar action.
Meanwhile, Taitz told WND she has forwarded to U.S. Attorney Jeffrey Taylor in Washington, D.C., a request for the U.S. to relate Quo Warranto “on Barack Hussein Obama, II to test his title to president.”
Named as plaintiffs in the action are nine military or legislative leaders, including Allen C. James, currently on active duty in the U.S. Army in Iraq. Others include several retired military leaders as well as elected state representatives.
“Relators request that as U.S. Attorney, you institute a Quo Warranto proceeding against Obama under DC Code § 16-3502, and demand that Obama show clear title, proving, with clear and convincing evidence, that he had qualified as president elect,” Taitz told Taylor.
“By each relator’s constitutional oath of office, and interest above other citizens and taxpayers, relators submit that they have standing,” Taitz wrote.
“In arguendo of Respondent Obama’s burden of proof, motions are submitted requesting mandamus on Hawaii Gov. Linda Lingle for evidence, and on Sec. State Hillary Rodham Clinton for evidence and to request evidence from Britain and the Republics of Kenya, Indonesia and Pakistan,” Taitz said.
She told WND the case was filed in the District of Columbia because the district recognizes the procedure. Taitz, who is working on her cases through the Defend Our Freedoms Foundation, cites a legal right established in British common law nearly 800 years ago and recognized by the U.S. Founding Fathers to demand documentation that may prove – or disprove – Obama’s eligibility to be president.
She previously submitted a similar case to U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder.
The legal phrase essentially means an explanation is being demanded for what authority Obama is using to act as president. An online constitutional resource says Quo Warranto “affords the only judicial remedy for violations of the Constitution by public officials and agents.”
John Eidsmoe, an expert on the U.S. Constitution now working with the Foundation on Moral Law, said the demand is a legitimate course of action.
“She basically is asking, ‘By what authority’ is Obama president,” he told WND. “In other words, ‘I want you to tell me by what authority. I don’t really think you should hold the office.’
“She probably has some very good arguments to make,” Eidsmoe said.
WND has reported on dozens of legal challenges to Obama’s status as a “natural born citizen.” The Constitution, Article 2, Section 1, states, “No Person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President.”
Some of the lawsuits question whether he was actually born in Hawaii, as he insists. If he was born out of the country, Obama’s American mother, the suits contend, was too young at the time of his birth to confer American citizenship to her son under the law at the time.
Other challenges have focused on Obama’s citizenship through his father, a Kenyan subject to the jurisdiction of the United Kingdom at the time of his birth, thus making him a dual citizen. The cases contend the framers of the Constitution excluded dual citizens from qualifying as natural born.
Several of the civil cases already have involved emergency appeals to the U.S. Supreme Court in which justices have declined even to hear arguments.
Eidsmoe said it’s clear that Obama has something in the documentation of his history, including his birth certificate, college records and other documents, “he does not want the public to know.”
What else could be the reason for his hiring law firms across the nation to fight any request for information as basic as his Occidental College records from the early 1980s, he asked.
According to the online Constitution.org resource: “The common law writ of quo warranto has been suppressed at the federal level in the United States, and deprecated at the state level, but remains a right under the Ninth Amendment which was understood and presumed by the Founders, and which affords the only judicial remedy for violations of the Constitution by public officials and agents.”
According to author Chester Antieau in his “The Practice of Extraordinary Remedies,” Quo Warranto is one of the oldest rights in common law.
“The earliest case on record appears in the 9th year of Richard I, 1198,” he wrote. “The statute of 9 Anne c. 20 in 1710 authorized a proper officer of a court, with leave of the court, to exhibit an information in the nature of quo warranto, at the ‘relation’ of any person desiring to prosecute the same – to be called the relator. Early American statutes were modeled after the Statute of Anne and, indeed, the statute has often been ruled to be part of the common law we inherited from England.”
Antieau noted the Pennsylvania Supreme Court has ruled, “Quo warranto is addressed to preventing a continued exercise of authority unlawfully asserted, rather than to correct what has already been done. …”
Its first recognized purpose, he said, is “to determine the title of persons claiming possession of public offices and to oust them if they are found to be usurpers.”
Among those who are subject to its demands, under court precedent, are chief executives in other U.S. governmental positions, including governors and sheriffs.
As WND has reported on several occasions, none of the so-called “evidence” of Obama’s constitutional eligibility produced thus far is beyond reasonable doubt nor as iron-clad as simply producing an authentic birth certificate, something Americans are required to do regularly but the president still refuses to do.
Adding fuel to the fire is Obama’s persistent refusal to release documents that could provide answers. While his supporters cite an online version of a “Certification of Live Birth” from Hawaii, critics point out such documents actually were issued for children not born in the state.
As Jerome Corsi, WND senior staff writer, explained, “The main reason doubts persist regarding Obama’s birth certificate is this question: If an original Hawaii-doctor-generated and Hawaii-hospital-released Obama birth certificate exists, why wouldn’t the senator and his campaign simply order the document released and end the controversy?
“That Obama has not ordered Hawaii officials to release the document,” Corsi writes, “leaves doubts as to whether an authentic Hawaii birth certificate exists for Obama.”
Obama officials repeatedly have declined comment, relenting only one time to call such allegations “garbage.”
WND also has reported that Taitz’ appeals have been submitted to the U.S. Supreme Court and the U.S. Justice Department, where officials confirmed they received the paperwork.
Other members of Congress have been reading from what appears to be a prepared script in response to queries about Obama’s eligibility:
Among the statements from members of Congress:
Sen. Jon Kyl, R-Ariz.: “Thank you for your recent e-mail. Senator Obama meets the constitutional requirements for presidential office. Rumors pertaining to his citizenship status have been circulating on the Internet, and this information has been debunked by Snopes.com, which investigates the truth behind Internet rumors.”
Sen. Mel Martinez, R-Fla.: “Presidential candidates are vetted by voters at least twice – first in the
primary elections and again in the general election. President-Elect Obama
won the Democratic Party’s nomination after one of the most fiercely
contested presidential primaries in American history. And, he has now been
duly elected by the majority of voters in the United States. Throughout both
the primary and general election, concerns about Mr. Obama’s birthplace were
raised. The voters have made clear their view that Mr. Obama meets the
qualifications to hold the office of president.”
Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio: “President Obama has provided several news organizations with a copy of his
birth certificate, showing he was born in Honolulu, Hawaii on August 4,
1961. Hawaii became a state in 1959, and all individuals born in Hawaii
after its admission are considered natural-born United States citizens. In
addition, the Hawaii State Health Department recently issued a public
statement verifying the authenticity of President Obama’s birth certificate.”
U.S. Rep. Rush Holt, D-N.J.: “The claim that President Obama was born outside of the United States, thus rendering him ineligible for the presidency, is part of a larger number of pernicious and factually baseless claims that were circulated about then-Senator Obama during his presidential campaign. President Obama was born in Hawaii.” The response provided no documentation.
Here is a partial listing and status update for some of the cases over Obama’s eligibility:
New Jersey attorney Mario Apuzzo has filed a case on behalf of Charles Kerchner and others alleging Congress didn’t properly ascertain that Obama is qualified to hold the office of president.
Pennsylvania Democrat Philip Berg has three cases pending, including Berg vs. Obama in the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, a separate Berg vs. Obama which is under seal at the U.S. District Court level and Hollister vs. Soetoro a/k/a Obama, (now dismissed) brought on behalf of a retired military member who could be facing recall to active duty by Obama.
Leo Donofrio of New Jersey filed a lawsuit claiming Obama’s dual citizenship disqualified him from serving as president. His case was considered in conference by the U.S. Supreme Court but denied a full hearing.
Cort Wrotnowski filed suit against Connecticut’s secretary of state, making a similar argument to Donofrio. His case was considered in conference by the U.S. Supreme Court, but was denied a full hearing.
Chicago lawyer Andy Martin sought legal action requiring Hawaii Gov. Linda Lingle to release Obama’s vital statistics record. The case was dismissed by Hawaii Circuit Court Judge Bert Ayabe.
Lt. Col. Donald Sullivan sought a temporary restraining order to stop the Electoral College vote in North Carolina until Barack Obama’s eligibility could be confirmed, alleging doubt about Obama’s citizenship. His case was denied.
In Ohio, David M. Neal sued to force the secretary of state to request documents from the Federal Elections Commission, the Democratic National Committee, the Ohio Democratic Party and Obama to show the presidential candidate was born in Hawaii. The case was denied.
Also in Ohio, there was the Greenberg v. Brunner case which ended when the judge threatened to assess all case costs against the plaintiff.
In Washington state, Steven Marquis sued the secretary of state seeking a determination on Obama’s citizenship. The case was denied.
In Georgia, Rev. Tom Terry asked the state Supreme Court to authenticate Obama’s birth certificate. His request for an injunction against Georgia’s secretary of state was denied by Georgia Superior Court Judge Jerry W. Baxter.
California attorney Orly Taitz has brought a case, Lightfoot vs. Bowen, on behalf of Gail Lightfoot, the vice presidential candidate on the ballot with Ron Paul, four electors and two registered voters.
In Texas, Darrel Hunter vs. Obama later was dismissed.
In Ohio, Gordon Stamper vs. U.S. later was dismissed.
In Texas, Brockhausen vs. Andrade.
In Washington, L. Charles Cohen vs. Obama.
In Hawaii, Keyes vs. Lingle, dismissed.
Gary Kreep of the United States Justice Foundation also has confirmed to WND a civil case brought on behalf of Ambassador Alan Keyes, a candidate for president on California’s general election ballot last year, challenging Obama’s eligibility will be appealed.
Judge Michael P. Kenny said the secretary of state, who is responsible for election laws in the state, has no “duty” to demand proof of eligibility from candidates.
“The judge’s ruling in the case that only Congress and only on Jan. 6 of each year following a presidential election can object as to whether the nominee is eligible to serve as president of the United States is, in our opinion, completely wrong and eviscerates the [Constitutional] requirements for serving as president in the United States Constitution,” Kreep said.
“If Mr. Obama is not constitutionally eligible to serve as president of the United States, then no act that he takes is, arguably, valid, the laws that he signs would not be valid, the protective orders that he signs would be null and void, and every act that he takes would be subject to legal challenge, both in courts of the United States of America, and in international courts, and that, therefore, it is important for the voters to know whether he, or any candidate for president in the future, is eligible to serve in that office,” the case explained.