I guess the lesson to draw from Anderson Cooper’s hostile interrogation of Texas state Rep. Leo Berman is that the Old Media, which mishandled the eligibility story from the beginning, is now determined to ensure America never learns the truth at their expense.

Berman’s offense was introducing a bill into the Texas Legislature that would require any candidate for president or vice president to provide a birth certificate to the Texas secretary of state to ensure constitutional eligibility before getting on the ballot.

It’s a perfectly logical and reasonable and commendable action. It should involve no controversy whatsoever – unless you believe Barack Obama is above the law, as apparently CNN’s Anderson Cooper does.

Cooper demonstrated his complete ignorance of the facts by beginning: “There’s a certificate of live birth, which is what the state of Hawaii sends out. Why isn’t that good enough?”

Berman started out strong, explaining that “it’s not an original birth certificate.” But here’s what he should have responded: “The document you are referring to, Anderson, is called a ‘certification of live birth,’ and it fails the test of proving Obama was born in Hawaii. There were and are several ways these documents can be obtained without a birth actually taking place in Hawaii. In addition, Hawaii has never released even the certification of live birth to anyone. The state refuses to do so. All we have in the way of a reputed certification of live birth is what the Obama campaign provided to select and privileged websites and journalists. Hawaii has never even confirmed that document that we’ve all seen on the Internet is an official, state-issued release. So clearly that is wholly inadequate for any state determined to ensure ballot integrity.”

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Berman went on to say we know for a fact Obama’s father was a Kenyan. However, we know nothing of the kind without a legitimate, original birth certificate. All we know is what is on the questionable document provided by the campaign. I, for one, have grave doubts that Obama’s biological father was a Kenyan. We certainly can never know if Obama continues to conceal the most innocent, non-secretive document any American holds – one all of us are asked to produce routinely throughout our lives. The digital document the Obama campaign released is not even suitable for obtaining a passport because it is so easily fabricated.

Cooper, meanwhile, thinks we should all stop worrying about the birth certificate because some unknown, faceless bureaucrat in Hawaii, the state health director, has “acknowledged that, back in 2008, she has – and I quote – ‘personally seen and verified that the Hawaii State Department of Health has Senator Obama’s original birth certificate – certificate on record, in accordance with state policies and procedures.'”

That’s all well and good, of course. But what does that birth certificate say? After all, no one doubts Obama was actually born. The question is where, when, to whom?

Cooper continued: “The governor of Hawaii, who is a Republican, was quoted as saying: ‘I had my health director, who is a physician by background, go personally view the birth certificate in the birth records at the Department of Health. We issued a news release at the time saying the president was, in fact, born at Kapi’olani Hospital in Honolulu, Hawaii. And that is just a fact.'”

But that is not a fact. The governor of Hawaii offered no such news release. Kapi’olani refuses to this day to confirm Obama was born there – though, until pressed on the matter by my news organization, it attempted to raise money making that claim. The claim was withdrawn from the hospital’s website when WND – and WND alone – simply asked for official confirmation of Obama’s birth there.

Asked by Berman if Cooper had ever seen the birth certificate, the incredibly non-curious and factually challenged newsman replied: “You can go and see it. The nonpartisan fact-checking organization FactCheck.org, they – they looked at it. It has a raised seal. They say it’s legit.”

No, FactCheck.org has never claimed to have seen anything other than the certification of live birth – a claim upon which it has established virtually its entire reputation. Prior to the 2008 presidential election, FactCheck.org was never considered the last word on the eligibility of candidates. In fact, John McCain’s own eligibility was determined in a hearing of the U.S. Senate – for which he had to produce his long-form birth certificate, not a digital simulation.

Berman did get off track on Obama’s travels to Pakistan. But I think that’s what Cooper was counting on.

I’d like to ask Anderson Cooper some questions: What’s wrong with wanting to see Obama’s birth certificate? Why is it so threatening to you? Where is your journalistic curiosity? Why were CNN and Dan Rather so eager to see George W. Bush’s National Guard records that had no bearing on his constitutional eligibility to serve in office? Why is there a lower standard of accountability for Barack Obama than any previous president?

Yes, the Old Guard Media are not taking these challenges well at all. And no wonder: They have a vested interest in this story never breaking out. They have too much at stake, having ridiculed it and mocked it for years. In fact, they’re getting desperate and scared.

Rep. Berman can have the last laugh by pushing his legislation through in Texas. It should be interesting to see whether Obama complies in 2012 – or chooses not to run for re-election. I’m betting on the latter.

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