Steve Farrell
Obama birth certificate issue still haunts the president
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By Steve Farrell
April 9, 2011

The to-the-point question — Where's the Birth Certificate? and for that matter, why is the President of the United States spending millions on legal teams to block access to it? — has not, and will not go away until the President comes clean and produces the document and proves himself a Natural Born citizen of the United States, or until the public furor and legal fallout intensifies to the point that the President finds himself ineligible to run for President in 2012.

There are a growing number of states moving forward legislation that just may cause the latter.

The latest to get on the eligibility bandwagon is Oklahoma. Oklahoma Senate Bill 91 requires presidential primary candidates to prove they are naturalized United States citizens by showing their birth certificates to the election board. On March 14, 2011, the bill passed in the Senate by a 34-10 vote. It goes to the House rules committee meeting next Wednesday.

The applicable part of SB91 as to presidential candidates reads:

The candidates shall ... be required to provide proof of identity and United States citizenship to the State Election Board. A candidate shall present a current state or federal government-issued photo identification to provide proof of identity, and shall also present one of the following documents to provide proof of United States natural-born citizenship:

    1. An original birth document issued by a state, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, or the District of Columbia, or a certified copy thereof;

    2. An original birth certificate issued by the federal government, or a certified copy thereof;

    3. An original United States Certificate of Birth Abroad; or

    4. An original Report of Birth Abroad of a Citizen of the United States.

    Copies of these documents shall be made by the State Election Board and kept available for public inspection pursuant to the Oklahoma Open Records Act.

And so what's wrong with that? Common sense, right? State Senator Rick Brinkley, R-Owasso, the original author of SB 91, notes: "Last year voters overwhelmingly approved a state constitutional amendment requiring most voters to to show a photo ID at their polling place." So it makes sense that candidates be held to the same standard, right?

Well, yes, but even a higher standard for such a high office as President of the United States, wouldn't you think? To serve in the military this writer was subject to a vigorous (and expensive) background check to insure I was who I claimed to be. It began with my producing a long form birth certificate. You see, I remember that, for all I had was one of those "Certificates of Live Birth" when I first applied, which had none of the required signatures, and which were too easy to obtain to prove anything about my birth and who I really was, and so the military rejected it, and sent me home that day. They told me to write to New York City and get an original. The same thing would be true for anyone who hopes to join the United States Armed Forces. But back to the background check: I had to detail an incredible amount of information dating back to my birth. They wanted details about every move, every address, why did I move? what jobs did I hold? why did I quit? what schools did I attend? who knew me? who could vouch for me? they wanted details about my parents, siblings, affiliations, travel history, did I ever go to a communist country (a potential disqualifier), etc. And because I was enlisting into a position that would expose me to sensitive security information, the investigators they hired actually went back and checked all this. I believe the cost of the investigation back in those days (early 1980s) was approximately $40,000.00.

The background investigation still wasn't complete when I arrived at my first assignment (a year later); and so the unit had to assign me to another office while I waited. Secrets needed to be protected until they could prove who this 23 year old kid was. I understood it then. I still do now.

But, if those were the rules for me, the average soldier, and those are the rules for millions of other average soldiers — I mean a real long form birth certificate just to join the military, and a vigorous background check regarding my entire life to work in secure areas; what about the requirements for the Commander In Chief? You know, the man who has the potential to do the most good or the most harm to our country; the man who has access to all of our nation's greatest secrets; the man who confers with heads of states from all over the world (to include those of enemy states); the man who directs our armed forces into battle; shouldn't the security requirements to know who this man is, to prove who this man is, be equal to, no, far greater than that for the common soldier? Or to put it another way, don't we believe in equality before the law? And as to men like the President, doesn't the wise old Biblical law apply: "Where much is given much is required"?

These are good questions, fair questions, I think. And I think we need to know the answers. Why should there be so much mystery around something so basic, and yet so vital? And, perhaps, more importantly, why, at this late date, are we still tolerating it?

The Moral Liberal asks the President to do the moral thing, the right thing, the sensible thing, and produce his birth certificate and other missing records.

© Steve Farrell

 

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