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 ↑
A California lawyer who continues to shepherd several of the high-profile legal challenges to Barack Obama’s eligibility to be president says she’s ready and willing to investigate the issue herself – as California’s secretary of state.
Attorney Orly Taitz told WND today she is considering – and will decide very quickly because of a coming deadline – whether she should submit her own name as a candidate for the state office.
That office supervises elections, and if elected secretary of state, she presumably would have the authority to investigate the qualifications of candidates, since previous officeholders in the state have done just that.
Taitz previously has filed actions in a number of jurisdictions. A recent filing in Washington, D.C., is requesting a preliminary injunction providing access to information about Obama’s qualifications.
She also has handled cases in California on behalf of presidential candidate Alan Keyes, which now is on appeal, another in Georgia on behalf of Maj. Stefan Cook, and yet another in Georgia on behalf of Capt. Connie Rhodes.
WND has reported efforts to raise the question of Obama’s eligibility at the state and national levels since before the 2008 election.
Numerous lawsuits have been filed alleging Obama did not meet the U.S. Constitution’s requirement that a president be a “natural born citizen.” The lawsuits have asserted he either was not born in Hawaii as he claims or was a dual citizen because of his father’s British citizenship at the time of his birth. Questions also have been raised about his travels to Pakistan as a youth.
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.”
However, none of the cases filed to date has been successful in reaching the plateau of legal discovery so that information about Obama’s birth could be obtained. Most have been dismissed at the lower court level based on judges’ decisions that the plaintiffs did not have “standing” – or the prospect of a personal injury in the cases.
“I will put my name on the ballot if I can,” she said. “I would like to make sure both the voters and candidates are legitimate.”
Presidential candidates, she said, would need to prove they not only are citizens but “natural born citizens.”
She noted California state officials previously have moved proactively in the case of suspected ineligible candidates, such as Eldridge Cleaver.
According to a brief filed in California state courts by Gary Kreep of the United States Justice Foundation, “In 1968, the Peace and Freedom Party submitted the name of Eldridge Cleaver as a qualified candidate for president of the United States. The then-Secretary of State, Mr. Frank Jordan, found that, according to Mr. Cleaver’s birth certificate, he was only 34 years old, one year shy of the 35 years of age needed to be on the ballot as a candidate for president.
“Using his administrative powers, Mr. Jordan removed Mr. Cleaver from the ballot. Mr. Cleaver, unsuccessfully, challenged this decision to the Supreme Court of the State of California, and, later, to the Supreme Court of the United States, which affirmed the actions,” the case reported.
“Jordan did what he was supposed to do,” Taitz said. “He checked his [Cleaver's] documents, found he was only 34 and threw him off the ballot.”
North Dakota Gov. Thomas Moodie, removed from office when the state Supreme Court found him ineligible
He cited “State ex rel. Sathre v. Moodie,” a North Dakota case from the 1930s.
Kreep reported that after Thomas H. Moodie was elected governor, it was discovered Moodie was not eligible for the position, as he had not resided in North Dakota for a requisite five years before running for office.
Court documents show Moodie was removed from office by the state Supreme Court and replaced by the lieutenant governor.
The Democrat was nominated by his party for governor in 1934 and beat his Republican opponent, Lydia Langer.
“As soon as the election was over, there was talk of impeachment, but no charges were filed,” the state’s archives report. “After Moodie’s inauguration on January 7, 1935, it was revealed that he had voted in a 1932 municipal election in Minnesota. In order to be eligible for governor, an individual has to have lived in the state for five consecutive years before the election. The State Supreme Court determined that Governor Moodie was ineligible to serve, and he was removed from office on February 16, 1935,” the state reports.
One of Kreep’s state court cases on the issue was brought to challenge why current Secretary of State Debra Bowen didn’t conduct that very investigation. The case was delayed until after Obama was inaugurated. Already campaigning to replaced Bowen is Republican Damon Dunn, a Baptist pastor.
Kreep’s case, in state court, alleged Obama was not eligible for the office and Bowen failed to investigate his qualifications before allowing his name on the 2008 presidential election ballot.
It is separate from another case brought on behalf of some of the same plaintiffs by both Taitz and Kreep in federal court over similar concerns. That case, dismissed last year by U.S. District Judge David Carter, is on appeal to the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.
Several state legislatures are working on proposals that would require presidential candidates to submit proof of their eligibility. And a similar proposal has been introduced in Congress by Rep. Bill Posey, R-Fla.
The claims are that Obama does not meet the U.S. Constitution’s requirement that a president be a “natural born citizen.”
The White House has not replied to numerous requests for comment.
Taitz also has attempted to pursue Obama through a “Quo Warranto” case in Washington.
A Quo Warranto action, first recorded some 800 years ago, essentially is a demand to know by what authority a public figure is acting.
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, an organization founded by former Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore, previously told WND the demand was a legitimate course of action.
“She is basically asking, ‘By what authority’ is Obama president,” he told WND when the issue first arose. “In other words, ‘I want you to tell me by what authority. I don’t really think you should hold the office.’”
Eidsmoe said it’s clear that Obama has something in the documentation of his history, including his birth certificate, college records and other documents that “he does not want the public to know.”
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.”
Besides Obama’s actual birth documentation, the still-concealed documentation for him includes kindergarten records, Punahou school records, Occidental College records, Columbia University records, Columbia thesis, Harvard Law School records, Harvard Law Review articles, scholarly articles from the University of Chicago, passport, 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.
Another significant factor is the estimated $1.7 million Obama has spent on court cases to prevent any of the documentation of his life to be revealed to the public.
“Where’s The Birth Certificate?” billboard helps light up the night at the Mandalay Bay resort on the Las Vegas Strip.
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.
Oddly, though congressional hearings were held to determine whether Sen. John McCain was constitutionally eligible to be president as a “natural born citizen,” no controlling legal authority ever sought to verify Obama’s claim to a Hawaiian birth.