Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty, who is positioning himself as a possible GOP presidential candidate in 2012, says he has no interest in pursuing questions about Barack Obama’s eligibility, because CNN reported that its staff members saw the president’s birth certificate.
In an interview on MSNBC, Pawlenty said, “I for one do not believe that we should be raising that issue in the sense that I think President Obama was born in the United States. CNN reported that they saw the birth certificate. At one point, I saw a newscast where they reported that.”
CNN itself noted in its own report on Pawlenty’s statement, “It should be noted that CNN and other news organizations have thoroughly debunked the rumors about the president’s birthplace. Hawaii has released a copy of the president’s birth certificate – officially called a ‘certificate of live birth’ – and the hospital where he was born took out ads in two Hawaiian newspapers in 1961 announcing the birth.”
However, the document image released by the Obama campaign in 2008 was a “certification of live birth.”
Short-form “Certification of Live
And staff members for billionaire Donald Trump, another possible candidate for the GOP nomination, who released both his “short-form” birth certificate and then later his “long-form” document, explained the difference between the two.
Donald Trump’s official birth certificate – for full image, including certifying note from registrar, click here (courtesy ABC News)
“A ‘birth certificate’ and a ‘certificate of live birth’ are in no way the same thing, even though in some cases they use some of the same words,” Trump staffer Thuy Colayco told ABC in a note accompanying the copy of the long-form certificate.
“One officially confirms and records a newborn child’s identity and details of his or her birth, while the other only confirms that someone reported the birth of a child. Also, a ‘certificate of live birth’ is very easy to get because the standards are much lower, while a ‘birth certificate’ is only gotten through a long and detailed process wherein identity must be proved beyond any doubt,” the note said. “If you had only a certificate of live birth, you would not be able to get a proper passport from the Post Office or a driver’s license from the Department of Motor Vehicles. Therefore, there is very significant difference between a ‘certificate of live birth’ and a ‘birth certificate’ and one should never be confused with the other.”
In Obama’s case, Hawaii’s loose laws would have enabled a family whose child was born outside to make a false declaration and obtain a “certification of live birth” indicating a Hawaii birth.
Left-leaning media outlets immediately criticized Trump when he released his short-form certificate, saying it didn’t prove anything, and he responded with the fuller document.
However, many of those same media outlets repeatedly have cited Obama’s short-form document as his “birth certificate” or “certificate of birth.”
Readers on a USA Today forum page were less than impressed with Pawlenty:
“Scratch this Kool-Aid Kid off the list of candidates for president. Bad enough we got an Empty-Suit now, we don’t need a gullible fool as the next one,” wrote one.
The readers also leap-frogged over Pawlenty’s comments to the core issue: “Obama spends almost $2,000,000 to hide every aspect of his past including his birth records, his college records, his Illinois senate records, everything. … In that regard, The ‘One’ doth protest too much.”
A scientific poll only 10 days ago reported that not even one person in 10 in the U.S. now believes that Obama has shown that he is eligible to occupy to Oval Office. Another 32 percent avoid the issue entirely by responding that the questions are not valid, despite the U.S. Constitution’s requirement that a president be a “natural born Citizen.”
The movement of the issue into the center of the 2012 presidential campaign, at least partly because of Trump, was confirmed by another USA Today reader: “If 12 presidential candidates post their long forms of birth certificates online and 1 does not, how would you feel about the one candidate that does not?”
Pawlenty’s comments came only a day after Trump pushed the dispute to an even higher level, explaining his concern that Obama’s presidency could be “illegal” if legitimate proof is not provided demonstrating the commander in chief is a natural-born citizen of the U.S.
Trumps remarks came in a phone interview with Greta Van Susteren of the Fox News Channel.
“To be honest with you, I want him to have a birth certificate,” Trump said, “because [otherwise] that would mean that his presidency was, I guess you’d have to say, illegal. You have to be born in the United States. I hope that he was born in the United States. I hope – but I want to get rid of the word hope, I want to know for sure – I hope that he was born in the United States and I hope this doesn’t become a big issue.”
Trump defended so-called “birthers,” explaining, “They just want to see the president was born in this country.”
He also called into question Hawaii’s Democratic Gov. Neil Abercrombie for saying he remembered when Obama was born nearly a half-century ago.
“I’ll bet he didn’t even know the parents 50 years ago,” Trump said. “I think it’s absolutely insane. What he’s doing is taking a bullet for the party by making a statement that, ‘I remember.'”
Trump also wondered why no doctors or nurses have come forward to announce their presence at Obama’s birth.
“Here’s the president of the United States, and no doctor, no nurse, nobody’s come forward saying, ‘I delivered that beautiful baby.'”
While much of the concern centers on Obama’s birth certificate, there are
numerous other documents that remain unavailable.
These are the types of records that typically are available for major
political leaders such as someone occupying the Oval Office. They include
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.