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 ↑
Just a day after Republican David Vitter became the first U.S. senator to voice support for groups challenging Barack Obama’s presidential eligibility in court, a congressional candidate from Indiana is joining the ranks.
Marvin Scott was responding to call-in questions from campaign supporters recently when he was confronted with a question about his position on the eligibility issue:
Scott, who is challenging Democrat incumbent Andre Carson, said, “Certainly, we have a right to know as citizens of this country. And that particular question has to be vetted over and over again to assure the public that the people who are representing us are fair and have ascended to that particular position because they have met all of the requirements, and therefore they are entitled to by a vote of the populace to be there.”
Scott has been a professor of sociology at Butler University for nearly 20 years and for nine years was president of a management-consulting firm.
He’s served as a consultant to public schools, colleges, universities and federal courts. His website explains he’s running for the House of Representatives because Republicans have a “long and rich history with basic principles: Individuals, not government, can make the beset decisions; all people are entitled to equal rights; and decisions are best made close to home.”
His campaign includes 14 points: defend the Constitution, restore and protect free enterprise and job creation, repeal the health-care law, eliminate the deficit and reduce the debt, secure borders and return rule of law to immigration, protect life, preserve the 2nd Amendment, fight Muslim extremism, establish energy independence, reduce taxes, restore the national defense, replace House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, establish a balanced-budget amendment and establish term limits.
He’s just the latest in a long list of prominent individuals and leaders who have posed similar questions.
Sen. David Vitter, R-La.
Louisiana’s Vitter says the dispute over Barack Obama’s eligibility to be president should be resolved in court.
“I support conservative legal organizations and others who would bring that to court,” Vitter said, according to an Associated Press report citing a video of the event.
It’s also significant that the AP reported on Vitter’s comments. The news wire has stated the president’s “birth certificate” has been made public even though the image of the document posted online actually is a “certification of live birth,” which was available to those not born in Hawaii.
Vitter was responding to a constituent Sunday at a town-hall meeting in Metairie, La., who asked about Obama’s “refusal to produce” a birth certificate.
The AP reported the crowd applauded the question.
Vitter said he didn’t have personal “standing” for litigation. But he said he supports the efforts to bring the question to court.
“I think that is the valid and most possibly effective grounds to do it,” he said.
He said “first and foremost” Americans need to “fight the Obama agenda at the ballot box starting this fall.”
Vitter said, according to the AP report, that the matters of the nation are too important to be diverted by distractions.
U.S. Rep. Steve King
U.S. Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa, appears to have suggested he’s not entirely satisfied that all the questions about President Obama’s eligibility have been answered fully.
The issue came up as he talked about the national debt in a recent address in Congress, televised by C-SPAN and posted on YouTube:
The congressman referred to the estimated $44,000 that each child born in the United States owes at the moment of birth as his or her part of the federal debt.
“We worry about them carrying a student-loan debt … maybe $40,000 in student loans,” he said. “We’ll, I’d be happy to take that $40,000 loan and a guarantee of a college degree and think that child could pay that off.”
But for the $44,000 in federal debt obligations, all the individual gets is access to citizenship in the United States of America, he said.
“Little baby with ink on their foot, stamped right there on the birth certificate – there’s one in this country we haven’t seen,” he said. “But the footprints on those we have seen. Those little babies owe Uncle Sam $44,000.”
While Espero said he believes Obama was born in Hawaii, he explained, “My decision to file the legislation was primarily a result of the fuss over President Obama’s birth records and the lingering questions.”
Oklahoma state Rep. Mike Ritze
Oklahoma state Rep. Mike Ritze sponsored a proposal to demand eligibility documentation from candidates for political office, including the president. Ritze, who says he regularly gets questions from his constituents about Obama’s eligibility, said an “ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” on the issues of candidate qualifications and eligibility.
U.S. Rep. Bill Posey, R-Fla.
In March 2009, Rep. Bill Posey, R-Fla., proposed H.R. 1503, known as the Presidential Eligibility Act. It is still pending in a House committee and has nearly a dozen co-sponsors, including Reps. Dan Burton, R-Ind.; Ted Poe, R-Texas; Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn.; John Campbell, R-Calif.; John R. Carter, R-Texas; John Culberson, R-Texas; Bob Goodlatte, R-Va.; Randy Neugebauer, R-Texas; Trent Franks, R-Ariz.; Louie Gohmert, R-Texas; and Kenny Marchant, R-Texas.
The measure seeks to “amend the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971 to require the principal campaign committee of a candidate for election to the office of President to include with the committee’s statement of organization a copy of the candidate’s birth certificate … to establish that the candidate meets the qualifications for eligibility to the Office of President under the Constitution.”
Arizona state Sen. Sylvia Allen
Arizona state Sen. Sylvia Allen, R-Snowflake, said the controversy over Obama and his birth certificate has raised questions.
“It just makes sense and will stop any controversy in the future to just show you are a natural born citizen,” she told the Arizona Capitol Times.
Arizona state Rep. Judy Burges
Arizona state Rep. Judy Burges, R-Skull Valley, told WND she has been getting questions from other states about H. 2442, a proposal she sponsored to require future presidential candidates to show they are qualified under the U.S. Constitution’s demand for a “natural born citizen.” The bill is co-sponsored by some three dozen lawmakers who also want state officials to independently verify the accuracy of documentation.
U.S. Rep. Nathan Deal, R-Ga.
Rep. Nathan Deal, R-Ga., sent a Dec. 10 letter to the White House formally requesting that President Obama address questions about his place of birth – and thus, whether he is qualified to be president. Deal, who is running for governor, said several months ago he would ask Obama to prove his eligibility.
“I have looked at the documentation that is publicly available, and it leaves many things to be desired,” Deal said in November.
“I think it’s a fair question, just like I think past association and past voting records – all of that is fair game,” Palin said. “The McCain-Palin campaign didn’t do a good enough job in that area.”
Former House majority leader Tom DeLay
In October, former House majority leader Tom DeLay offered his views on Obama’s birth, saying, “Why wouldn’t the president of the United States show the American people his birth certificate? You have to show a birth certificate to play Little League baseball. It’s a question that should be answered. It’s in the Constitution that you have to be a natural born citizen of the United States to be president.”
“I believe he’s a natural born citizen of the United States. Therefore, even if he acts un-American and seems to go against American interests, he’s still an American-born citizen,” he said. “All that being said, probably Barack Obama could solve this problem and make the birthers back off by simply showing … his long-form birth certificate.”
Because that isn’t happening, “There’s some other issue there.”
“I don’t know what it is that he doesn’t want people to see the birth certificate. I don’t think it has to do with his natural-born citizenship,” Franks continued. “He’s spent an awful lot of money to keep people from seeing the birth certificate. … I think it has to do with something else.”
Feminist icon Camille Paglia
Even feminist icon Camille Paglia, a Salon.com columnist who earlier wrote about the ambiguities of President Barack Obama’s birth certificate, told a National Public Radio audience that those who have questions about his eligibility actually have a point. “Yes, there were ambiguities about Obama’s birth certificate that have never been satisfactorily resolved. And the embargo on Obama’s educational records remains troubling,” she wrote.
“Regardless of where he was born, is he a natural born citizen as required by the Constitution? I don’t know the answer to that,” Rappaport said. “My understanding is that … a natural born citizen had to be someone with two American parents. If that’s true, his father was a Kenyan and therefore a British subject at the time. Then there’s the issue: If he was born out of the country, was his mother old enough at the time to confer citizenship?
“I expect somebody to come up with the legal answers to this,” Rappaport told WND, “and so far that hasn’t happened.”
Former Rep. J.D. Hayworth, R-Ariz.
In his Jan. 26 appearance on “Hardball,” former Rep. J.D. Hayworth was asked by Chris Matthews, “Are you as far right as the birthers? Are you one of those who believes that the president should have to prove that he’s a citizen of the United States and not an illegal immigrant? Are you that far right?”
Hayworth replied, “Well, gosh, we all had to bring our birth certificates to show we were who we said we were, and we were the age we said we were, to play football in youth sports. Shouldn’t we know exactly that anyone who wants to run for public office is a natural-born citizen of the United States, and is who they say they are?”
“Should the governor of Hawaii produce evidence that the president is one of us, an American?” Matthews asked. “Do you think that’s a worthy pastime for the governor of Hawaii right now?”
“No, I … Look, I’m just saying the president should come forward with the information, that’s all,” said Hayworth. “Why should we depend on the governor of Hawaii?”
Longtime New York radio talker Lynn Samuels did the same. “We don’t even know where he was born,” she said. “I absolutely believe he was not born in this country.”
WND has reported on multiple 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 Obama 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.
Further, others question his citizenship by virtue of his attendance in Indonesian schools during his childhood and question on what passport did he travel to Pakistan three decades ago.
Adding fuel to the fire is Obama’s persistent refusal to release documents that could provide answers and his appointment of lawyers to defend against all requests for his documentation.
While his supporters cite an online version of a “Certification of Live Birth” from Hawaii as his birth verification, critics point out such documents actually were issued for children not born in the state.