President Obama, A Natural Born Citizen, Will Not Be In Georgia On Thursday

Today’s Courier Herald Column:

President Obama appears to have a scheduling conflict. His official calendar has him appearing in Detroit on Thursday, while some are expecting him to appear before a Georgia administrative law judge in a Fulton County courthouse the same day.  The smart money should bet on Detroit.

Over the weekend, headlines trumpeted that President Obama had been “ordered to appear” in the Georgia courtroom.  He is called to face several conspiracy theorists who have filed challenges on various grounds to his legal ability to appear on the Presidential ballot.  The President’s lawyers filed a challenge to the subpoena, but failed to include a legal justification as to why the President should not appear.  The judge, far from “ordering” the President to appear in an administrative hearing, nudged the President’s lawyer to come back with proper paperwork.

The ruling has helped feed a festive atmosphere within the community of people known as Birthers, who believe the President is not a natural born American citizen and therefore is not a legitimate Commander In Chief.  These are people who believe that despite of the President producing his birth certificate, and the state of Hawaii certifying the authenticity of said certificate, that somehow a half century ago a Kenyan family posted a birth announcement in a Hawaii newspaper to begin a diabolical plot to install a Kenyan/Muslim/Socialist/ as President of the United States.

In a new twist in the birther’s line of attack, they now claim a constitutional requirement that not only Obama be a citizen, but both of his parents must have been a citizen at the time of his birth.  This legal standard is pure fiction that exists only on the internet, but supporters are not deterred.

The attorneys representing the clients include California attorney Orly Taitz and Georgia State Representative Mark Hatfield.  Hatfield previously filed a bill in the legislature requiring presidential candidates to produce their “original, long form birth certificate”, despite no legal description or standard for such a document exists outside the confines of conspiracy based websites.  Taitz, for her part, has been fined $20,000 by a federal judge in Georgia for filing frivolous cases challenging the President’s citizenship. The fine was upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court – with the consent of conservative Justices Scalia and Thomas.

Those two justices are significant because the birther movement is frequently tied to conservatives and more specifically, Republicans.  The Democratic Party of Georgia has stated that “Republicans” are trying to remove President Obama from the ballot, implying that there is an organized effort by the GOP to use this as an election strategy.  Given the involvement of a sitting House member, it is a charge that makes it problematic for Republicans to deny.  General silence on the issue from Republican elected officials and party leaders, it is a charge that sticks so long as it remains uncontested.  This is a mistake.

We are taught from a young age that we will be judged by the company we keep. Republicans cannot afford to keep the company of the paranoid and delusional.  There is no rational reason to question a state’s official documents, nor justification for creating supra-constitutional requirements of citizenship.  The birther argument transcends disagreements of policy and politics, and spirals those who engage into pure nuttery.  This cannot be condoned by Republicans any longer.

Republican leaders have a choice to face with birthers.  They can continue to remain silent, and accept the small minority to define the rest of the party as out of touch fringe who have an irrational need to remove a duly elected President by any means necessary.   The party must decide if it wishes to coddle those who are blinded by paranoia, or demonstrate to independent voters that Republicans plan to win on policy.

It is not sufficient for a party to indicate only for which it stands.  It sometimes must also be clear on that which it does not.  The systematic strategy of stripping the legitimacy from elected Presidents is bad for America and the concept of representative government.  Republicans who rightfully chided Democrats for questioning Bush’s legitimacy after the 2000 electoral debacle are now complicit in the same behavior.  This must change, for the sake of the country.

President Obama is a natural born citizen, as demonstrated by the State of Hawaii certifying his birth certificate.  Therefore, he is the legitimate and duly elected President of these United States.  Republicans who wish to effectively work to remove him through the constitutional election process should recognize and be able to articulate this simple fact.  Those who actually care about the constitution and the republic that it defines must acknowledge this publicly and clearly.


  1. The Last Democrat in Georgia says:

    “These are people who believe that despite of the President producing his birth certificate, and the state of Hawaii certifying the authenticity of said certificate, that somehow a half century ago a Kenyan family posted a birth announcement in a Hawaii newspaper to begin a diabolical plot to install a Kenyan/Muslim/Socialist/ as President of the United States.”

    That “somehow” was through the use of the Internets, DUH! And they also used smart phones and Skype to set up the whole thing up!

    Sinister use of technology that wouldn’t exist for 45 more years, indeed.

  2. ted in bed says:

    All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident.

    Arthur Schopenhauer, German philosopher (1788 – 1860)

    • Loren says:

      “The fact that some geniuses were laughed at does not imply that all who are laughed at are geniuses. They laughed at Columbus, they laughed at Fulton, they laughed at the Wright brothers. But they also laughed at Bozo the Clown. ”

      – Carl Sagan

      (Also, whereas mine is a real Sagan quote, yours is not a real Schopenhauer quote. See what happens when you uncritically believe stuff you read on the internet? That’s how Birthers are created.)

  3. AMB says:

    Ooooh, all that hand wringing about the GOP and birthers. Paragraphs and paragraphs without addressing the underlying pure racism that drives the birther movement. The omission is noted.

  4. Harry says:

    Charlie, you are not correctly stating the eligibility issue. Obama has not submitted a proper birth certificate. The pdf version he submitted has been shown to have been manipulated. There is reasonable cause to assert that he was not born in the US (maybe Canada, maybe Kenya), to a US minor mother and a non-US father. If he cannot prove definitively that he is in fact eligible to serve, then Obama is ineligible and if he appears on the ballot his votes would need to be discarded.

    • TheEiger says:

      Why are you so hard headed / just plain crazy? Please stop the birther nonsense. Hate him because of his spending, lack of leadership ability, beholden to green jobs, his hatred for people who work hard for their money. I don’t even care if you hate the way he talks and dresses. All fair reasons to not like him. The birther issue makes you look less than intelligent and makes everyone here on this site forever dismiss anything you say on any topic. You usually bring good arguments to debates on peach pundit, but this makes you and everyone associated with the birther movement look stupid. Again, for you, for me, for everyone that has to read this crap, please stop. Please?

        • AMB says:

          The earth is not flat. The moon is not made of green cheese. Mr. Obama was not born in Kenya. Or Canada. Or Indonesia.

          Facts, Harry. Facts still matter.

            • TheEiger says:

              Hawaii – I will not call you a fool, but you are getting increasingly closer to being called stupid. Again, please stop.

            • Rick Day says:


              Why is it so important to you that Biden become president?
              Burden of proof is on the BIRTHERS not on Obama.

              Birthers drive the overall IQ of GOP voters down 38.6 points, and court cases like this drive away business we may potentially get because of the perception we are all hillbilly inbreds.

              Birthers = 21st Century “CLINTON LIED ABOUT HIS BLOWJOB”. Always got to gt up into someones privates.

    • verbalobe says:

      Harry, you are not correctly stating the eligibility issue. A rabidly anti-Muslim millionaire California dentist says Obama has not submitted a proper birth certificate. A rabidly anti-Muslim millionaire California dentist and a copy-machine salesman say the pdf version he submitted has been shown to have been manipulated. A handful of rabidly right-wing bloggers with absolutely no real knowledge say there is reasonable cause to assert that he was not born in the US (maybe Canada, maybe Kenya), to a US minor mother and a non-US father.

      Fixed it for you. Always remember to cite your sources.

      “If he cannot prove definitively….” He was the first President to do so, in June 2008, with the release of the COLB — BEFORE the election and only days after the first articles appeared suggesting that he do so. Responsiveness, transparency — what did it get him? Baseless accusations of lying, and ever-more bizarre theories concocted to fit the pattern of facts. As a CPA, I assume you have a precise, scientific mind. I’m surprised you would entertain these notions, which at this point implicate tens of thousands of people in a 60-year-old conspiracy.

      It’s caca, and I think you know it. What I wonder, is why you can’t admit it?

    • sfjeff says:

      Harry- President Obama held a press conference and showed his original certified copies to reporters, and then published copies of those on the internet. To repeat- reporters saw the original copies. Not PDF’s.

      And then the State of Hawaii said- officially- yes President Obama published authentic copies of his Birth Certificate, and he was born in Hawaii.

      By any rational standards he has proven he was born in Hawaii. At this point you should either stand up and declare your true belief that the State of Hawaii is part of a very, very big conspiracy, or admit that yes this is as airtight proof as we will ever see for any President- and far more than we have ever seen for any previous President.

  5. sfjeff says:


    Seriously? Youtube, WND, Postemail and Free Republic? These are the sources you rely upon? No wonder you are confused by the issue. You should look to credible sources.

    Harry- It is really simple- either the State of Hawaii is part of a Conspiracy involving President Barack Obama to defraud the American voters or we have absolute proof that Barack Obama was born in Hawaii.

    So Harry- is it a conspiracy involving the State government of Hawaii(and not one, but two different administrations, 1 Republican and 1 Democrat)?

  6. Harry says:

    Here’s a good quote I read today:
    “The man who comes back through the Door in the Wall will never be quite the same as the man who went out. He will be wiser but less sure, happier but less self-satisfied, humbler in acknowledging his ignorance yet better equipped to understand the relationship of words to things, of systematic reasoning to the unfathomable mystery which it tries, forever vainly, to comprehend” – Aldous Huxley

  7. Rick Day says:

    You would think by now we would have discovered birthers are secretly financed by Biden to usurp Obama, making him POTUS.

    I wonder then how the GOP loyal would feel about how the Master Democrat duped the in-breds into doing his biding.

    I can picture Biden in his Dr Strangelove Veep bunker, doing a Mr Burns *excccccccccccellllent* finger thingie while Wagner plays in the background.

  8. c_murrayiii says:

    I want to know why Newt and Romney haven’t released copies of their birth certificates. Neither has Ron Paul. What are they hiding? For that matter, where’s Joe Biden’s? Or Hillary’s? I know she wasn’t elected, but she was on the ballot. Facts: Romney speaks French, spent time in France, his father was born in Mexico (where’s proof he is a naturalized US citizen?) and his father also spent time in the UK. How do we know he isn’t a French citizen? Or a Mexican citizen for that matter? Facts: Newt’s mother was a minor when she gave birth to him, his father was an adult, Newt spent a lot of time in France in his youth, and then was in Brussels as a student during the Vietnam War, meaning he didn’t get drafted. How do we know he isn’t French too? Perhaps he was born to an underage American woman and a Frenchman and then went to France to find his true father, claimed French citizenship so he could attend school there and got out of going to Vietnam? I’m just asking questions here…

    • c_murrayiii says:

      One more fact on Romney: Mitt is not his real name. Why is he going by Mitt when his legal name is Willard? What else is he hiding?

      • ted in bed says:

        Seriously? If the price of following the requirements of the Constitution is that Mitt is disqualified, then that is fair. I’d note his father was a US citizen because BOTH of his parents were citizens, UNLIKE OBAMA.

        Simple fact is that Obama’s father was a Commonwealth Citizen. That means Obama has dual citizenship from the US and the Commonwealth by birth and automatically. Has he ever denounced his Commonwealth Citizenship? Did he claim it in his college applications and paperwork?

        The Constitution was written for a reason. You can not have a leader with dual loyalties, or even the appearance of dual loyalties. The Natural Born requirement is to make sure that the President has “no strings attached”. You’ll notice that there is an exception from the Natural Born requirement for our early Presidents who had parents who were English or born outside America. Obama’s parent’s citizenship situation mirrors our early president’s situation. They were exempt. Obama is not.

        The powers don’t want this issue brought to light because it will cause chaos if Obama is proven to be ineligible for office. None of any his actions would be valid. That is why the press, Democrats, the establishment Republicans, etc don’t want this issue examined.

        You can be insulting. Obama may win. But history will show that Obama was an illegitimate president.

        • verbalobe says:

          I denounce your lack of patriotism, ted/bed.

          It’s absolutely disgusting to me that this bizarre splinter faction of Obama haters that you seem to be a part of, wants to utterly destroy America’s sovereignty, and even go so far as to claim that their ideals come from the Constitution and the Framers.

          And it truly puzzles me that there is apparently such an overlap between hard conservatives and the Tea Party, with the birthers who are pushing this dangerous credo. I always thought hard conservatives were tremendously proud of America, and believed in exceptionalism. And now they want to dip our flag to every other nation on earth.

          It’s confusing and shocking.

        • c_murrayiii says:

          Your definition of natural born is not the recognized definition (according to Black’s law dictionary and the Supreme Court per the Wong Kim Ark case). Also, do you have proof that Obama has ever claimed citizenship of another state? In addition, does the Commonwealth recognize Obama as a dual citizen?

          I am not trying to be insulting. My questions were as valid as those asked by birthers seem to the general population. I am also no fan of Obama, in fact, I think he’s been awful and I can proudly say I voted for McCain(born in Panama) and will vote for whoever wins the Republican primary . I simply don’t see the sense in continuing this far-fetched, conspiracy nonsense when we have the chance to focus on actual issues in an election year and defeat Obama in a legitimate manner. To focus on birther claims in an election year sends the signal that you think the President will be re-elected and that is an outcome you won’t tolerate, no matter how legitimate.

          • I think it’s also kind of funny/sad that the new standard seems to be that Obama needs to prove a negative (for example: even though they have no proof that he ever claimed dual citizenship it’s up to Obama to open up his entire history and exhuastively show where he hasn’t).

            Something tells me Ted would be singing a different tune if the police showed up at his door, accused him of something (say like using an illegal substance) and said instead of us proving that you’ve done this, it’s up to you to prove that you haven’t.

            Funny, I thought that whole innocent until proven guilty (as opposed to guilty until you prove you are innocent) thing was a bedrock principle shared by both liberals and conservatives. Apparently for some people who probably call them conservatives like Ted it’s easy to say Obama is violating or disrespecting the Constitution…I believe the legal principle is takes one to know one.

            • ted in bed says:

              If the police show up at my door, they will need a warrant to come in. Otherwise, I’ll tell them to come back when they do. Its called the 4th Amendment and is in the Constitution (get a copy, you’ll find all sorts of fun facts).

              To get a warrant, the Police need probable cause that a crime is occurring or there is evidence of a crime. They can’t (in theory) bust down my door on a fishing expedition without having some basis to think a crime is being committed.

              Obama’s Father’s citizenship provides probable cause that he is not eligible and a potentially a dual citizen. Innocent till proven guilty is for Criminal law, not for the office of the President. A person needs to qualify to be president.

              The courts have watered down the natural born citizenship requirement with several court cases. They have interpreted the Constitution incorrectly for political reasons before and will again, ie Dred Scott.

              I’m sure this suit will be portrayed in the media as a freak show. But in future years after he leaves office, researchers will find out that he was not eligible and the freaks today will be vindicated.

              • Don’t stop believin’. In the absence of the birth certificate, the Honolulu Times Advertiser birth notice, his mother’s US citizenship maybe that would be probably cause – but all of those other facts (particularly the mother’s citizenship) negate any PC you could come up with.

                Besides, both parents are dead, so it isn’t exactly like you can get them to testify on this. And even so – if his father’s plan was to raise him as some sort of colonialist British/Kenyan subject he sure picked a good way to demonstrate this plan by almost immediately abandoning him and moving away from the child and mother on his own.

                It’s too bad his white mother isn’t still alive to go on the Today show and share some sappy remembrance of his birth, pretty sure you wouldn’t be obsessed with this if she were.

              • Loren says:

                “Obama’s Father’s citizenship provides probable cause that he is not eligible and a potentially a dual citizen. ”

                No it doesn’t. It was universally acknowledged during the 2008 campaign that Obama had a Kenyan father. He mentioned it in speeches. He used it as an opening line for his 2004 convention speech. He wrote a *book* about it. His own campaign website flatly stated that he was born with a dual British citizenship. Those facts were a matter of public record. VERY public.

                And despite running a nearly-two-year campaign, no one ever suggested in that time that those facts were ‘probable cause’ that he was Constitutionally ineligible. Not Hillary Clinton, not John Edwards, not Dennis Kucinich, not John McCain, not Sarah Palin, not even Rush Limbaugh or Sean Hannity or Bill O’Reilly. They didn’t make that argument because THOSE FACTS DON’T MAKE HIM INELIGIBLE.

              • sfjeff says:

                Ted:”The courts have watered down the natural born citizenship requirement with several court cases. They have interpreted the Constitution incorrectly for political reasons before and will again, ie Dred Scott.”

                I am glad that you agree that according to the current interpretation of the U.S. Constitution that Barack Obama is indeed eligible.

                Virtually the entire country agrees with you that he is eligible.

                Now all you have to do is pass a Constitutional amendment to change the Constitution to the way you think it is supposed to be.

              • Cobb Needs a Front Page Poster says:

                Ted, there is no where in the United States Constitution, the Federalist Papers, Federal Statutory law, or in a decision of the United States Supreme Court where being a citizen of another nation AND the being a citizen of the United State of American at the time of one’s birth meant that the person was not a Natural Born Citizen. What U.S. law has said on the matter is this:

                Naturalization Act of 1791: “[T]he children of citizens of the United States, that may be born beyond sea, or out of the limits of the United States, shall be considered as natural born citizens: Provided, that the right of citizenship shall not descend to persons whose fathers have never been resident in the United States.”

                The very first law on the matter does not even require one’s father to be a citizen, only that the father must have been a “resident” of the United States at some point. It does not even define how only the alien father had to have resided in the U.S.

                This law way passed by the 1st Congress which included the “Father of the Constitution,” James Madison, as a member.

                We know Obama’s father was a resident of the United States as no one has disputed that Barack’s mother met him when he was a student in the U.S.

                Revisions of the Naturalization Act since have no longer used the phrase “natural born citizen.”

                Furthermore, as no nation on Earth had ever in history contemplated such a thing as “duel-citizenship,” the Founders could no more have planned for it than they could have planned for the Internet or cell phones. In 1787, you were the citizen of one nation and one nation only. We can only speculate what they would have done if something like that had even been on their radar, but they probably couldn’t even imagine radar so we might as well be trying to ascertain what they would have thought of radar for all the practicality it would have.

                The Constitution recognizes two and only two types of citizens:

                1. Natural born
                2. Naturalized

                The U.S. Supreme Court has also said that there are only two types of citizens:

                1. Natural born
                2. Naturalized

                In the case that is often quoted by birthers, Minor v. Happersett, the Court itself in 1875 says there are only two ways that a person becomes a citizen of the United States:

                “Additions might always be made to the citizenship of the United States in two ways: first, by birth, and second, by naturalization. This is apparent from the Constitution itself, for it provides [n6] that “no person except a natural-born citizen, or a citizen of the United States at the time of the adoption of the Constitution, shall be eligible to the office of President,” [n7] and that Congress shall have power “to establish a uniform rule of naturalization.” Thus new citizens may be born or they may be created by naturalization.”

                Birthers use this case to prove that the Supreme Court has ruled one must be born to two parents who are citizens to be considered “natural born” because of the following line:

                “At common-law, with the nomenclature of which the framers of the Constitution were familiar, it was never doubted that all children born in a country of parents who were its citizens became themselves, upon their birth, citizens also. These were natives, or natural-born citizens, as distinguished from aliens or foreigners. Some authorities go further and include as citizens children born within the jurisdiction without reference to the citizenship of their parents. As to this class there have been doubts, but never as to the first.”

                Birthers say that the line, “as to this class there have been doubts” proves the U.S. Supreme Court has definitively ruled that BOTH PARENTS MUST BE CITIZENS FOR ONE TO BE PRESIDENT. That’s because they get the line they want and don’t bother to even read the next line in which the court says they are not going to tackle that issue because for the case, it’s not an issue because the plaintiff’s parents were both U.S. citizens. The court said in the next line, “For the purposes of this case it is not necessary to solve these doubts. It is sufficient for everything we have now to consider that all children born of citizen parents within the jurisdiction are themselves citizens.”

                The reason was the case had nothing to do with who was a citizen, but what rights a citizen has. In the case, the plaintiff was a woman who wanted to vote and said she had a right as a citizen to vote. The court concluded its case by saying being a citizen didn’t mean you had the right to vote.

                Furthermore, the doubts that the Court had were doubts about common law definitions, not Constitutional definitions.

                Finally, the present case in Georgia concerns only Obama’s status as a Natural-Born Citizen solely on the fact that he had one parent who was not a U.S. citizen. The case does not, according to an interview I heard today on 640AM with one of the lawyers, have to do with WHERE Obama was born.

                As a side note, if Obama was born outside the U.S., he would not have been a U.S. citizen at birth…period.

                There reason is that in 1961, U.S. law at that time stated citizenship could only be passed on at birth if one parent was a citizen who had resided in the US for at least 5 years past their 14th birthday. As Obama’s mother was still 18, it would have been physically impossible for her to have resided in the U.S. for 5 years past her 14th birthday. Legally, Obama would have only been a citizen of the British Commonwealth if he was born in Kenya and would only be a U.S. citizen if he was formally naturalized.

                • Lo Mein says:

                  Too bad Obama’s lawyer didn’t just ask YOU to show up yesterday and recount all of this. Now, because they flouted the authority of an administrative judge in our great State, it’s likely that the judge will enter an order to remove Obama from the GA ballot, and Sec. Kemp has said he will abide by the judge’s recommendation.

                  They should have just shown up, if it was so easy to prove their argument, as you put forth. Now, as Kemp said, they’ll have to suffer the consequences.

                  No one is above the law.

      • c_murrayiii says:

        No, they aren’t, not to 99% of the population, including most of the folks who will be working this year, like myself, to see Obama removed from office legitimately through the November elections. I’m sorry. Obama was certified by all 50 states on their ballots, he was elected legitimately (and unfortunately) and we have to focus on bringing attention to his awful policies, not some conspiracy theory. Looking for these back door methods of getting rid of him make you look petty, a poor sport, and like you’re up to no good. Focus on the real issues.

  9. “It is not sufficient for a party to indicate only for which it stands. It sometimes must also be clear on that which it does not.”

    I think the Republican Party has sufficiently made it clear where it stands and where it does not. While it does not stand for gay marriage, it does stand for infidelity and divorce. It does not stand for online poker, but it does stand for online censorship (see SOPA and PIPA). It does not stand for killing via abortion, but it does stand for killing via undeclared wars. It does not stand for legalizing marijuana, but it does stand for busting down the doors of cancer patients to make sure they’re not self-medicating with any federally unauthorized substances.

  10. benevolus says:

    Doesn’t the State Department check citizenship when someone applies for a passport? I would think this would have been settled long ago just on that alone.

          • Harry says:

            From the Washington Times:

            The State Department investigation of improper computer access to passport records of three presidential candidates is focusing on one remaining employee — a contract worker with a company headed by an adviser to the presidential campaign of Sen. Barack Obama

            The probe by State’s inspector general will include polygraph tests for supervisors in the passport section to find out whether the three contract employees who accessed the records had a political motive or were part of a political operation to obtain personal data on Mr. Obama, Sen. John McCain or Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton.

            Two of the three contract employees had been fired before The Washington Times first reported Thursday on security breaches involving Mr. Obama’s passport records. The furor expanded yesterday to incidents involving the passport records of Mr. McCain and Mrs. Clinton.

            The third employee, who has not been fired, worked for The Analysis Corporation (TAC), which is headed by John O. Brennan, a former CIA agent who is an adviser to Mr. Obama’s presidential campaign on intelligence and foreign policy.

            • Charlie says:

              The Washington Times is owned indirectly by George Soros, who uses it to push “sound money” advocacy in an attempt to make a few more billion through currency manipulation. Again, It’s on the internets, so it’s been proven.

            • verbalobe says:

              Very suspicious. During the Bush administration, some summer workers poke around in passport records for Clinton, McCain and Obama, the then leading Presidential candidates. This indicates Obama is a fraud… how? He sent someone? To look at his own records? Of which he presumably already had full knowledge?

              And this proves what? That Pakistan was a no-go for US citizens in 1981 even though the NYT ran a tourism feature at the same time, explaining the finer points of how to acquire a visa and touting various enticing attractions?

              I guess that 1981 NYT article was planted. Maybe by John O. Brennan, using the CIA time machine that is stored at Area 51 with the firing caps from the 9/11 WTC explosives and the frozen body of Lee Harvey Oswald. Just next door to the moon landing sound stage.

              Keep ’em coming, Harry! Your imagination is delightful!

                • sfjeff says:

                  “The “questions” are more interesting than the “answers” sometimes.”

                  Especially when the answers refute the ‘questions’ Birthers throw at the wall.

      • benevolus says:

        OK, so it seems like the conspiracy theory would be that Obama planted someone to go in and alter his existing passport record to… change his American passport to… an American passport?
        That’s not nearly as good as the FACT that George W. Bush had someone go in a cleanse his National Guard records.

      • sfjeff says:

        Harry- where is your evidence that Barack Obama was not on a U.S. passport?

        And what makes you think that Pakistan was a no-go for U.S. citizens?

        Seriously- this story was refuted over 2 years ago. If you are just going to repost Birther talking points, at least use the current ones, not the ones that even Apuzzo is embarressed by now.

        • Cobb Needs a Front Page Poster says:

          Americans are not supposed to go to Cuba, but there are some who still do, and did even before restrictions were eased.

  11. sunkawakan says:

    Wow. Seems like the John Birch Society and various and sundry neo-confederate groups are strong in Georgia.

  12. sfjeff says:

    Harry- you continue to just cut and paste Birther talking points. I understand considering what ‘news’ sources you rely upon but why do you not answer my very serious question?

    Harry- It is really simple- either the State of Hawaii is part of a Conspiracy involving President Barack Obama to defraud the American voters or we have absolute proof that Barack Obama was born in Hawaii.

    So Harry- is it a conspiracy involving the State government of Hawaii(and not one, but two different administrations, 1 Republican and 1 Democrat)?

    Which is it Harry- stand up and be counted.

      • SallyForth says:

        Thanks. I’ve also been wondering how this affects the early Primary voting that has now begun. Since the Democrats put only one name on the ballot (Obama), do they now have a blank ballot, none at all, or what? I think the judge’s deadline for briefs is only a couple of days before Super Tuesday.

        • CNFPP says:


          While the Democrats did not show to offer testimony, they did file an answer to the original complaint. I’m sure any appeal will be based on issues of law and not necessarily the evidence. I’ve read the filings by both parties and most of the concerns I had as to the parties’ standing when discussing the merits of filing an action with some of the parties who are actually involved in this case were echoed in the answer by the DPG. I can’t legitimately get to the same conclusion as the judge did in his ruling without stretching the law thinner than I thought it ever could go.

          However, the judge has to issue a final ruling before it can be appealed. Also, looking at the law (OCGA § 21-2-5(b)), it would seem that the Judge only reports his findings to the Secretary of State who would then make the determination on whether the candidate should or should not be removed from the ballot. The SoS’s decision can then be appealed to the Fulton County Superior Court. That appeal must be made within 10 days.

          Before this hearing, it was generally acknowledged that Presidential Preference Primaries were a party function that was carried out by the state. The greatest danger now is this opens the door for the DPG to challenge whomever they want on the GOP primary ballot.

        • benevolus says:

          My understanding is that there really are no qualifications for the primary (other than paying the fee). The Dems could nominate anyone to be on the ballot because winning the primary doesn’t win you a seat to anything. That’s why the attorney is objecting the the fact that Kemp even referred this to a judge. There is no qualification standard to meet.
          Now if Mickey Mouse did win the primary, Kemp could keep him off of the GE ballot.

          • Harry says:

            The Dems better be careful who they nominate – it’s not like they haven’t received fair warning. They’ll be screaming bloody murder when Kemp keeps Obama off the General Election ballot. Now’s the time to clear up the confusion about his eligibility.

            • bowersville says:

              In case you haven’t noticed, the Birthers have shot an elephant and the Republicans are going to have to eat it. The Democrats aren’t going to help you.

              • ted in bed says:

                Are you suggesting that any office holder can qualify for their office just by nature of currently being in it. What if a State Senator moves to SC? Does he get to run again because he has squatter’s rights?

                The challenge is about this election. Is he a natural born citizen and thus qualified for the office of the President? The Dems can’t throw any name into the Primary they want, each candidate has to be qualified for the office.

                Most of the posters think this is only about Obama. It isn’t. Whatever the courts decide will be applicable to Marco Rubio and others. It also has applicability to the US born children of illegals. This is a big unresolved question and its good that its being brought up.

                • Charlie says:

                  “Is he a natural born citizen and thus qualified for the office of the President?”


                  “The Dems can’t throw any name into the Primary they want.”

                  Actually, they can, as the Presidential Preference Primary doesn’t elect anyone. Nor does it put President Obama’s, Marco Rubio’s, or any illegal Mexicans on the ballot. It serves a function for the Democratic Party to allocate it’s delegates for a national convention. Please tell me where the restriction on how to select delegates to a party’s convention is covered or restricted in the U.S. Constitution.

                  “This is a big unresolved question”

                  It is neither big, nor unresolved.

                  • Lo Mein says:

                    Since the Presidential Preference Primary doesn’t fall under Constitutional election law, I guess it’s OK if we keep blacks and women from voting in it… right?

                    • benevolus says:

                      The conduct of the election is one thing, the nomination of candidates is another. Could the Aryan Nations have a candidate qualification as “Caucasian”? I am not sure.

                    • Lo Mein says:

                      Well, according to Charlie, that wouldn’t fall under Constitutional election law, so it would be OK.

                    • CNFPP says:

                      Yes, but the problem for the Aryan Nation (much to the benefit of our state) is that they do not have access to hold a primary coordinated by the SoS. But, for argument’s sake, let’s say they did have access. If the Aryan Nation wished to only place 20 year old white, Anglo-Saxon Protestant males on their PPP ballot, they could. And if they wanted to nominate as a Presidential candidate for their party, a 20 year old white, Anglo-Saxon Protestant male, they could. And they could place that nominee on the Georgia ballot in November. And let’s say in November, the GOP candidate got 20%, the Libertarian candidate got 20%, the Dem candidate got 20%, the Green Party candidate got 19% and the the 20 year old white, Anglo-Saxon Protestant male Aryan Nation candidate got 21%, then the 16 Presidential Electors chosen by the Aryan Nation would get to go to the Gold Dome and cast their ballots for whomever they want to for President of the United States, so long as they were qualified because they are the only ones who would actually vote for President. We were voting for the party’s nominees for Electors.

                  • ted in bed says:

                    I see what you are saying. I reviewed O.C.G.A. § 21-2-191. It looks like there are no qualification for the primary and no state qualifications to run for President.

                    I was wrong. You are correct.

                    • ted in bed says:

                      Cancel that.

                      I found the section of the code I was looking for: OCGA 21-2-5. Since the section starts with “every”, it would apply even to the people named by the political party in a Preference Primary.

                      This section makes sense in terms of maintaining the integrity of elections. If the names submitted for the primary weren’t qualified, then the leadership of the political party could manipulate the election to benefit their favored candidate. For example, lets say the leadership of the Republican party didn’t like Ron Paul. To siphon off votes from him, they could put on the ballot a name of Don Paul. Don would get votes intended for Ron because some people don’t remember full names.

                      Since the case proceeding, I would assume that everyone in the courtroom agreed that a candidate named by a party for a preference primary must meet the requirements of the office. Now, we will finally get a court to review Obama’s eligibility. Which is good news for both sides.

                      Here is the text of the section:

                      § 21-2-5. Qualifications of candidates for federal and state office; determination of qualifications

                      (a) Every candidate for federal and state office who is certified by the state executive committee of a political party or who files a notice of candidacy shall meet the constitutional and statutory qualifications for holding the office being sought.

                    • CNFPP says:

                      On the contrary, that section actually hurts your argument and here’s why:

                      First, Presidential Preference Primaries (PPP) are not governed under this section of the law (Article 1). They are governed by Article 5. The State Parties (Dem and GOP) do not certify the presidential candidates like they do other state and federal candidates. Presidential primary candidates are selected by their party (OCGA 21-2-193) and it is party rules that govern the allocation of delegates. As a former member of the Executive Committee of the GOP (from 2001-2010), I have several times voted to certify candidates for state primary ballots and I have also voted to select PPP candidates for the ballot.

                      The effect of the PPP is more like a straw poll as opposed to the General Primary (GP) which is held in summer. In the GP, the candidates keep running until there is one winner. This is not true of the PPP because the result of the PPP is not the election of a candidate, but the allocation of delegates as per the rules of the State Parties. In the PPP, you are not electing anyone to a federal office, but voting to allocate delegates.

                      In fact, OCGA 21-2-5(b) specifically states, “Within two weeks after the deadline for qualifying, any elector who is eligible to vote for a candidate may challenge the qualifications of the candidate by filing a written complaint with the Secretary of State giving the reasons why the elector believes the candidate is not qualified to seek and hold the public office for which he or she is offering.”

                      “Public Office,” as used in this code, is defined in 21-2-2(30) as, “every federal, state, county, and municipal office to which persons can be elected by a vote of the electors under the laws of this state or the respective municipal charters, except that the term shall not include the office of soil and water conservation district supervisor.”

                      Since the PPP does not select a candidate for a “public office,” it is not covered. “Electors,” as defined under this code, deals with state electors (see OCGA 21-2-2(7)) and NOT Electors are defined under the federal constitution. State electors do not vote for the president in either the PPP or the General Election.

                      Furthermore, PPP candidates do not qualify for office. Their names are submitted by the Executive Committee of the State Parties.

                      Remember, there is no federal right to vote except for Presidential Electors. The Federal Constitution defines reasons states can’t prohibit votes (race, gender, age, etc), but, aside from those restrictions, the states are, and always have been, free to make their own criteria as to who can qualify as electors within a state. In fact, in 1875, you could vote in many state elections, including Georgia elections, if you were not a U.S. citizen (the Georgia constitution at the time only required you affirm that you some day intend to become a U.S. citizen).

                      Since Presidents are nominated by convention and elected by the Electoral College (or by Congress if the College results in a tie), state law has little recourse in Georgia to challenge the qualifications of a candidate put on the ballot by the State Party for the PPP.

                      In 2008, the EC of the GAGOP voted to put Alan Keyes on the PPP ballot. Keyes was not running for President that year, at least not actively. However, one member of the committee wanted his name on there and made a motion to add it. As no one saw any reason not to allow Keyes on the ballot, we added him.

                    • benevolus says:

                      OK. I guess I’ll stand corrected on that. I didn’t find that section earlier.
                      Not sure that it makes any sense, but that’s what it says.

                    • CNFPP says:

                      What doesn’t necessarily make since is that the taxpayers of Georgia have to pay every four years for each Party to have what amounts to a Presidential beauty contest.

                    • benevolus says:

                      Doesn’t part of the qualifying fee go to the state (or whatever jurisdiction is conducting the election)?

                    • CNFPP says:

                      There is no qualifying fee for the PPP. Some states do require candidates for President to pay a qualifying fee. I know for a fact Ohio does. Maybe that is something we need to explore in Georgia, or at least, make the Parties defray the cost.

                      State law also allows the parties to hold conventions instead of primaries. While it would mean less participation by Georgians in general, that could be another way to go that would not cost the taxpayers, including taxpayers who are not Republicans or Democrats, millions in taxpayer funds to conduct an intra-party election.

                      The fact that this is an exercise in futility is the Dems can do that. If Kemp rules Obama off the Primary Ballot, then the DPG can simply take the process internal. They would also have a great cause to fund raise with.

                      I do have to wonder why have a vote and waste the money if there is only one candidate on the ballot?

  13. ted in bed says:

    Thanks. I see the point and return to being wrong.

    At what point can the qualifications of the President be legally challenged since it can’t be at the state level.

  14. Andre says:

    This is a reply to the comment made by benevolus at 9:31AM:

    O.C.G.A. § 21-2-198 prohibits either political party from collective a qualifying fee.

    The actual language of state law reads as follows:

    No qualifying fee may be assessed for presidential candidates or for candidates for delegate or delegate alternate whose names are listed on a presidential preference primary ballot.

    As CNFPP correctly notes, it doesn’t necessarily make sense for Georgia taxpayers to foot the bill for what amounts to a presidential beauty contest.

    The presidential preference primary does not elect anyone. It is simply an opportunity for voters to express their preference of candidates vying for the presidential nomination of the Republican or Democratic parties.

    Maybe it is time for legislation to be drafted that either makes the presidential preference primary a party-run event instead of a state-run event; or, at the very least, start requiring presidential candidates to pay a qualifying fee to help defray the state’s cost to run the primary.

Comments are closed.