So he had the power to get this into the public eye and yet resisted until the country’s polity was almost paralyzed with distraction. I know this was an ethically legitimate position after releasing the short-form document proving that he was indeed born in the US. I know it was politically savvy because, by the rules of jujitsu, Obama allowed the nutty right (is there any other variety with influence now?) to make fools of themselves.
Nonetheless, I think this should have been done long ago. Because a president has to put his public responsibilities before his pride and his privacy. That’s the price of the job – to defuse or debunk conspiracy theorists or just skeptics with all the relevant information you have.
The reason, Andrew, is because he already did everything he needed to do, and he did it in 2008:
In 2008, in response to media inquiries, the President’s campaign requested his birth certificate from the state of Hawaii. The state sent the campaign the President’s birth certificate, the same legal documentation provided to all Hawaiians as proof of birth in state, and the campaign immediately posted it on the internet. That birth certificate can be seen here (PDF).
When any citizen born in Hawaii requests their birth certificate, they receive exactly what the President received. In fact, the document posted on the campaign website is what Hawaiians use to get a driver’s license from the state and the document recognized by the Federal Government and the courts for all legal purposes. That’s because it is the birth certificate. This is not and should not be an open question.
Only for truly insane people and politicians who find advantage in race-baiting and de-legitimizing the President was this not enough. How evident was it that this was ALL he needed to do to prove he is a citizen? Try this on for size- not one god damned state contested his citizenship in the election. Jan Brewer just vetoed the birther bill in Arizona because it was an exercise in redundancy exercise and ran headlong into the full faith and credit clause. This new release will solve nothing, and the birthers will still continue to spew their nonsense.
President Obama has done nothing wrong, other than being black, which is apparently a sin for much of the country. Stating that he had an obligation to release this form or that he waited too long to do it turns everything upside down. Obama is the wronged party here.
*** Update ***
This release today will end nothing, and Sullivan is being played for a fool. Again.
*** Update #2 ***
I know Sullivan’s reaction shouldn’t be pissing me off as much as it is, because he really can’t help himself. He really is just a stooge for whatever bullshit the right spews, either intentionally or accidentally. He doesn’t mean to be, I don’t think, just his self-identity as a conservative is so strong that he simply can not come to grips with the fact that conservatism is dead in the United States, and that those who call themselves conservative are just crazy people. But Andrew so yearns for a “sane conservatism” that he just can’t help himself, and as such, advances bullshit narratives like the Ryan plan being “serious” or it being Obama’s fault that he didn’t release this information earlier. Sully just can’t help himself.
But still, I find it infuriating. Our President spends several years having people question his citizenship, his commitment to this nation, his eligibility to be President, and so on, simply because his dad was black and he himself is black. And this persists even after it has been proven beyond any reasonable doubt that he is a citizen. The Supreme Court has laughed it off. The military has court martialed birthers. Orly Taitz is one frivolous lawsuit away from being deported to Ukraine or wherever she was spawned. There simply is no doubt that the President is American, and there has never been any doubt. These claims have been nothing but specious, ugly, racially motivated charges, yet today, after the redundant “long form” is released, Sullivan and Newt Gingrich know who the real villain is- President Obama.
Embarrassing. I bet there is a sigh of relief at the Atlantic HQ today- “Not our problem anymore.”