WASHINGTON – One of the most influential bloggers, pundits and columnists in America, Andrew Sullivan, joined the rising chorus of voices across the political spectrum calling for Barack Obama to release his original, long-form birth certificate to put aside growing doubts about his eligibility for the presidency.
Sullivan writes that he believes official accounts, such as the recent statement by Dr. Chiyome Fukino, director of the Hawaii State Health Department, that maintain Obama was born there and is a “natural born citizen.” Sullivan says, however, Americans should not be expected to accept on blind faith the word of public officials.
“It is not my job as a journalist or yours as a citizen to take public officials on trust.” he says. “They are not to be trusted, whoever they are. It is our job to demand all the evidence we want or need. I know the electronic record is legit. I have no doubt that Obama has every constitutional right to be president. I think the Birthers are nuts. But there is no reason on earth that the original cannot be retrieved and shown.”
He added that CNN President Jon Klein and his network were wrong to dispense bad information about original Hawaiian birth certificates having been destroyed and declaring the story dead.
“Obama promised total transparency,” he wrote. “Where is it? Or will it arrive at the moment when he tackles the deficit and withdraws from Iraq?”
Only seven hours after posting his call for transparency, however, Sullivan wrote that he sustained a barrage of furious readers and recanted his position, saying he has faith in FactCheck.org’s assertion that the Certificate of Live Birth is good enough.
“I should note that I was made aware today that FactCheck.org did see the original, and I’d encourage the Obama peeps to show it to other outlets,” Sullivan writes. “After following all these confusing stories, and realizing that others have indeed seen and vetted the original, I don’t see any further obligation on Obama’s part. I’m still confused as to how the same original could be simultaneously in Chicago and Hawaii, but it seems to me that the president has done what is necessary.”
Sullivan’s backpedaled further, stating, “I’m not part of the Birther crowd. I’m trying to defuse them. I’m done now.”
Sullivan, the former deputy editor and associate editor of The New Republic, has written for the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, the Daily Telegraph, the New York Times Magazine, Time Magazine, Sunday Times of London and Esquire. He was named editor of the year by Adweek magazine in 1996.
In the summer of 2000, Sullivan became one of the first mainstream journalists to experiment with blogging, and soon developed a large online readership with andrewsullivan.com’s Daily Dish. In February 2007, he moved his blog to The Atlantic Online where he now writes daily.
Sullivan’s original comments echoed those from an array of prominent commentators, including CNN’s Lou Dobbs, talk radio’s Lynn Samuels, WND’s Chuck Norris and Rush Limbaugh, who have recently spoken out critically regarding Obama’s refusal to release his birth certificate.
The “Certification of Live Birth” posted online and widely touted as “Obama’s birth certificate” does not in any way prove he was born in Hawaii, since the same “short-form” document is easily obtainable for children not born in Hawaii. The true “long-form” birth certificate – which includes information such as the name of the birth hospital and attending physician – is the only document that can prove Obama was born in Hawaii, but to date he has not permitted its release for public or press scrutiny.
WND has produced hundreds of stories reporting on dozens of legal challenges to Obama’s status as a “natural born citizen” and other issues. 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 challenges 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.
Complicating the situation is Obama’s decision to spend sums estimated in the hundreds of thousands of dollars to avoid releasing a state birth certificate and other documentation.
Obama’s birth certificate is not the only document at issue. WND has reported that among the documentation not yet available for Obama includes his kindergarten records, his Punahou school records, his Occidental College records, his Columbia University records, his Columbia thesis, his Harvard Law School records, his Harvard Law Review articles, his scholarly articles from the University of Chicago, his passport, his medical records, his files from his years as an Illinois state senator, his Illinois State Bar Association records, any baptism records and his adoption records.
Note: Members of the news media wishing to interview Drew Zahn, Jerome Corsi, Joseph Farah, Joe
Kovacs, Chelsea Schilling, Les Kinsolving or Bob Unruh on this issue,
please contact WND.