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 ↑
The Obama White House held a formal news conference last year to announce “proof positive” of Barack Obama’s Hawaii birth, posted his “birth certificate” online and has been busy making fun of anyone who doesn’t believe that story ever since.
But 37 percent of Republican primary voters in Ohio, 38 percent of them in Georgia and a startling 45 percent of them in Tennessee simply don’t believe it.
Another large percentage, some 1 in 5, have doubts so that they cannot say for sure they believe him.
The results come as the voters will be making their choice tomorrow for their favorite GOP candidate to oppose Obama, the presumptive Democrat nominee for the presidency this fall.
The results were obtained by Public Policy Polling, which asked “Do you think Barack Obama was born in the United States, or not?”
In Georgia, 40 percent said he was, but 38 percent said he was not and another 22 percent were unsure. Ohio residents mirrored that, with 42 percent saying he was born in the U.S., 37 percent saying he was not, and 21 percent uncertain.
For residents of Tennessee, Obama’s word has even less impact. There, 33 percent said he was born in the U.S., 45 percent said he wasn’t, and 22 percent said they were unsure.
Commented USA Today, “PPP also noted that these voters – known as ‘birthers’ – tend to support the more conservative Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich over Mitt Romney heading into Tuesday’s contests.”
The polling company agreed. “If Romney ends up coming short on this late charge to Tennessee it may be due to his inability to compete with this fringe group. Among non-birthers, he trails Santorum only 34-33. But with the birther contingent he’s in a distant third at 24 percent to Santorum’s 35 percent and Gingrich’s 32 percent.”
No matter how much the Obama campaign makes fun, however, it appears the issue won’t disappear.
Sheriff’ Joe Arpaio of Maricopa County, Ariz., last week announced the results of a formal law enforcement investigation into Obama’s eligibility, determining there is probable cause to believe his birth certificate image is a forgery and that constitutes a fraud on the American people.
He has since said the issue is being elevated and his investigators how are looking for individuals responsible for the alleged fraud and forgery.
NOTE: In case you missed the news conference of Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s “Cold Case Posse,” you can view it here.
WND reported late last year when Matt Romney, whose father, Mitt, is vying for the GOP nomination, said that his father would release his financial records when President Obama “releases his grades and birth certificate.”
The younger Romney later insisted he was joking, but Obama, in Hawaii at the time on a vacation estimated to set the taxpayers back some $4 million, saw it as an opportunity to cash in for his campaign. His 2012 fundraising machine immediately posted online: “The Birth Certificate Thing Again?” to sell mugs.
The issue is that while the Constitution requires a president to be a “natural born citizen” the documentation that would reveal that for Obama remains unrevealed.
Obama has refused to allow access to whatever original documentation there might be in the state of Hawaii, where he said he was born, as well as many other documents, such as passport records, kindergarten records, Punahou school records, Occidental College records, Columbia University records, Columbia thesis, Harvard Law School records, Harvard Law Review articles, University of Chicago articles, Illinois State Bar Association records, Illinois State Senate records and schedules, medical records, Obama/Dunham marriage license, Obama/Dunham divorce documents, Soetoro/Dunham marriage license and adoption records.
There also are his critics who say that “natural born citizen” at the time the Constitution was written would have meant the offspring of two citizens of the country, and since Obama’s father was a foreign national, he would not qualify under that standard.
When the Iowa caucuses were being held a Public Policy Polling report noted that one in three Iowa GOP members do not believe Obama was born in the United States – an indication of their disbelief about his eligibility to be president.
Another 21 percent were not sure. Some 47 percent said they believe he was born in the United States, but they didn’t address the argument that the “natural born citizen” requirement demands parents who are citizens.
WND reported that another recent poll showed half of registered voters would like to see Congress investigate Obama’s eligibility. It also showed nearly that many believe the definition of the constitutional term “natural born citizen” means both parents must be U.S. citizens.
“There’s no marginalizing those who want this matter investigated by Congress,” said Fritz Wenzel of Wenzel Strategies after conducting the WND/Wenzel Poll telephone survey during the summer.
“Even among Democrats, more than one in four – 28 percent – said they now want an inquiry, as do 43 percent of independents and 77 percent of Republicans. Interestingly, men are much more skeptical than are women about the question of eligibility – only 42 percent of men said they think Obama proved his eligibility by releasing the electronic birth certificate, compared to 59 percent of women.”
The poll at that time indicated 43.5 percent of Americans believe that a Hawaii birth would make no difference in Obama’s eligibility. The figure included 56.9 percent of Republicans, 40.2 percent of independents and 32.9 percent of Democrats.
The eligibility saga, as Wenzel noted, has taken on a life of its own. It began with questions about Obama’s birth place and parentage before his election. At that time, he released a computer image of a short-form “Certification of Live Birth” from Hawaii and insisted it was original and the only document available.
He instructed his White House counsel, Robert Bauer, to have a private attorney, Judy Corley of Perkins Coie, contact the Hawaii Department of Health to obtain a copy of his “Certificate of Live Birth” purportedly on file with the state.
The White House subsequently released copies of a copy of the document, as well as an online image, calling it “proof positive” of a Hawaii birth. Since then, however, dozens of experts, including several ex-CIA members, have asserted that the document is fraudulent.
At its release, WND contacted the Hawaii Health Department and the office of Gov. Neil Abercrombie, an ardent Obama supporter, to request confirmation that the image released was an accurate representation of the state’s file information. Officials declined to respond.
A constitutional expert recently weighed in on the the issue and concluded that the obvious meaning of the term “natural born citizen,” which is not defined in the Constitution, is someone who obtains citizenship naturally, from citizen parents, and not from any act of Congress or other affirmative action.
“Obama came into office with such fanfare and made such sweeping claims that his administration would repair holes in our social fabric and fix our economy, but America has seen none of that. Disappointment has given way to disillusionment and anger, and this survey reveals that even on a simple, basic question of his qualification to hold the office of president, many are skeptical that what the White House has delivered is not at all what was advertised,” Wenzel said.
“There are many reasons this eligibility question has taken on a life of its own, but that only half the country [in the Wenzel poll] believes that the president has proven he deserves to hold the office reveals a deeply held belief that he is somehow trying to trick the country. This sense of distrust underlies public perception of everything Obama does and says, which means that, as he begins to build a re-election campaign, it is going to be increasingly difficult for him to make a case on any issue as long as this question about the authenticity of his birth certificate remains unanswered. In fact, releasing the birth certificate that Obama released may have made worse his standing with the American people, and that will certainly be the case if a congressional inquiry discovers it has been tampered with or forged,” Wenzel warned.
Then in January 2010, another WND/Wenzel Poll showed on the one-year anniversary of Obama’s tenure in office that fully one-third of Americans refused to believe Obama was a “legitimate
president,” with another 15.8 percent saying they were not sure.Barely half the voters, 51.5 percent, said they believed the president legitimate even though he had not produced documentation proving his constitutional eligibility. Even 14.6 percent of the
Democrats said they did not consider him legitimate.
In May 2010, a WND/Wenzel Poll showed that 55 percent of Americans wanted Obama to release all records relating to his childhood and his education, including “college records, Harvard Law School papers, passport records, travel records, and other similar documentation.”"Asked what should be done should it be found that Obama does not meet the qualifications to be president, 59 percent said he should be removed from office, and 35 percent said all bills signed into law by Obama should be repealed,” the poll’s analysis revealed.
By June 2010, other media were beginning to put their toes in the waters of the controversy.
A 60 Minutes-Vanity Fair poll showed only 39 percent of respondents believed Obama was born in Hawaii as he claimed in his book.”A shocking 63 percent – very nearly two-thirds of us – went out on a limb and stated for the record that we believe in the United States. It’s enough to make you proud to be an American – or 63 percent proud, at any rate.”But that figure included those who said they believe he was born in Kansas or some other unknown state, which still would conflict with Obama’s story.
In later 2010, a poll by CNN said 6 of 10 people were uncertain Obama was born in the U.S. The poll said only 42 percent believe Obama “definitely” was born in the U.S.The CNN report said, “Hawaii has released a copy of the president’s birth certificate – officially called a ‘certificate of live birth.’ And in 1961 the hospital where the president was born
placed announcements in two Hawaiian newspapers regarding Obama’s birth.”