In former Arizona House Speaker Kirk Adams, eligibility activist Tom Ballantyne thought he had found a Republican ally who would champion the Constitution by demanding a congressional investigation into Barack Obama's "natural-born citizen" status.
After all, Adams told Ballantyne he was so fierce a defender of the Constitution that he battled his state's Republican governor in court to protect the legislature's enumerated powers from executive-branch encroachment.
When it came to investigating Obama's eligibility, however, Adams – who is now running for the U.S. House – said he feared Congress standing up to the chief executive would trigger "a constitutional crisis unlike one we've seen since perhaps the Civil War."
Further, Adams questioned whether an investigation by Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio – determining probable cause to suspect the White House presented forged documents as "proof" of Obama's eligibility – lends "credibility" to the case.
In a video shot by Ballantyne, author of "Oh Really, O'Reilly!" and cameraman Gabe Zolna, Adams affirmed his oath of office to defend the Constitution, but worried that investigating Obama's potential violation of that Constitution would create tremendous "fallout" among the American people.
"First off, I do think it's entirely appropriate that every candidate for office be able to prove their eligibility," Adams said. "But … can you imagine the constitutional crisis that would ensue?"
He continued, "Because of how big that would be, I simply do not believe that an investigation by a volunteer posse of the sheriff gives enough credibility to this issue to really push this issue."
Instead, Adams insisted Congress shouldn't act until the question of Obama's eligibility had "worked its way through the legal process."
Video of the exchange can be seen below, with Adams' remarks on eligibility beginning at roughly the 5:55 mark:
The video concludes with Ballantyne arguing that Obama's potential ineligibility has already triggered a Constitutional crisis and that the issue can't "work its way through the legal process" because the courts won't grant "standing" to those seeking answers.
"Absent a congressional hearing and congressional force of authority being brought to bear," Ballantyne said, "it seems that everybody is waiting for somebody else to do it."