Since Fox News host Bill O’Reilly erroneously claimed President Obama’s
Connecticut-issued Social Security number was likely the result of his father having “lived in Connecticut for several years,” the cable news giant has apparently scrubbed the audio of the statement from its website.
In his viewer email segment Wednesday night, O’Reilly was asked by viewer John Knox of Arlington, Va.: “What about Obama having a Connecticut Social Security number? He never lived there.”
“His father lived in Connecticut for several years,” O’Reilly answered, adding that “babies sometimes get numbers based on addresses provided by their parents.”
Another letter from Fox viewer Ken McFadden of LaGrange, Ga., asked: “O’Reilly, will you stake your professional reputation that Mr. Obama is constitutionally eligible to be president?”
“I will, Ken,” answered O’Reilly.
A screenshot from BillOReilly.com shows no mention of the viewer’s letter asking O’Reilly why Obama is using a Connecticut-based Social Security number when he never lived there.
But those questions and answers did not appear on a Fox News website podcast of the episode purchased, downloaded and audited by WND. In addition, a printed version of the question-and-answer exchange, above, on BillOReilly.com, a separate site, also left out the key question about Connecticut.
The Fox audio podcast had O’Reilly doing the “Factor Mail” segment, starting with a question from Marion Rauch, Ocala., Fla.: “O’Reilly, well I am so glad you cleared up the myths surrounding President Obama. Come on, Bill, give us the facts, not opinion.”
He responded, “Gave you the facts, Marion. Stand by all of ’em. If you have evidence to the contrary, please pass it along. You got the facts.”
Following a “bump” in the audio, he then moves immediately into “Pinheads and Patriots.”
O’Reilly’s full explanation of the “truth” of Obama “myths” is here:
The BirtherReport.com website, responding to complaints by Fox podcast customers that O’Reilly’s Social Security claim, broadcast Wednesday on Fox, had gone missing from the audio archive, trumpeted the headline: “Busted: Fox News scrubbed Bill O’Reilly’s 4/13 mailbag segment on Obama’s Social Security number reserved for Connecticut applicants.” The site added, “Not only did Fox News scrub the podcast, they also left out the viewer email about Obama’s Social Security number at O’Reilly’s website. I report, you decide!”
WND reported just a day earlier, in response to O’Reilly’s claim that Obama had a Connecticut Social Security number because his father had lived there, that there is no evidence Barack Obama Sr., who left Hawaii in 1962 to study at Harvard in Massachusetts and then returned to his home country of Kenya, ever lived in Connecticut.
The controversy over Obama’s Social Security number traces back to a WND story May 11, 2010, reporting that two private investigators working independently were questioning why Obama was using a number set aside for applicants in Connecticut while there is no record he ever had a mailing address in the state.
The records indicate the number was issued between 1977 and 1979, when Obama was between 16 and 18 years old and living in Hawaii.
The Social Security website confirms that the first three digits in Obama’s Social Security number are reserved for applicants with Connecticut addresses, 040-049.
Since 1973, Social Security numbers have been issued by one central office, and the first three digits of a person’s Social Security number have been determined by the Zip code of the mailing address on the application.
WND reported on an article written by Shurei Hirozawa in the Honolulu Star-Bulletin Sept. 19, 1959, that establishes when Barack Obama Sr. arrived in the islands to begin his studies at the University of Hawaii. The university registrar’s office has confirmed that the fall 1959 term for which Obama Sr. was registered began Sept. 21, 1959.
WND also reported on two separate articles published in June 1962, in the Honolulu Advertiser and the Honolulu Star-Bulletin, in which Obama Sr. stated he was leaving that month to travel to Cambridge, Mass., to begin graduate studies.
Had Barack Obama Sr. attended Yale, he might have lived in New Haven, Conn., some 90 miles south of Boston, but there is no record Obama Sr. ever attended any classes at Yale.
In September 1962, Obama Sr. entered Harvard to pursue a Ph.D. in economics. Before completing the requirements to obtain the degree, however, he returned to Kenya.
The assertion that Obama is using a Social Security number issued to an applicant with a Connecticut address because his father lived in Connecticut can be traced back to a piece Carol Bengle Gilbert posted on the Yahoo blog “Associated Content.”
In that piece, Gilbert claimed, without providing any documentation, that Barack Obama Sr. lived in Connecticut after divorcing Obama’s mother.
“In fact Barack Obama’s dad attended college in Connecticut and in 1977, Obama was college aged; is it beyond reason to consider he might have checked out his father’s alma mater?” Gilbert wrote.
The story Obama told in his autobiography, “Dreams from My Father,” was that he saw his father only once after he left Hawaii to study at Harvard, during a return visit to Hawaii in 1971.