Over the past several months, the right wing has been advancing the discredited myth that President Obama is not a natural-born U.S. citizen. These so-called “birthers” claim that Obama hasn’t produced his a valid birth certificate to prove that he is eligible to be president. (He has). CNN’s Lou Dobbs is the latest to traffic in this nonsense, despite the fact that his own guest-host debunked the “birther” claims on Dobbs’s show.
Today on MSNBC, host Chris Matthews interviewed Rep. John Campbell (R-CA), co-sponsor of a bill that would require candidates for president in the future to present a copy of his or her birth certificate “to establish that the candidate meets the qualifications” for president. “The proposal is not crazy,” Campbell said in defense of the measure. “Congressman, nice try,” Matthews replied. “What you’re doing is appeasing the nutcases…you’re verifying the paranoia out there,” he said. Matthews then held up a copy of Obama’s birth certificate and said, “That’s the way to deal with this, mail this birth certificate to the wacko wing of your party.”
Matthews asked Campbell seven times if he believes Obama is a natural born U.S. citizen, and after a series of dodges, Matthews said, “You are feeding the wacko wing of your party.” Campbell finally answered, “As far as I know, Yes.” “As far as you know? I’m showing you his birth certificate!” Matthews exclaimed:
MATTHEWS: It’s on the screen now, take a close look. It says “Barack Hussein Obama.” He was born August 4, 1961 in Honolulu, is that a state? Yes it was. His mother was caucasian, his father was African. What more do you want? He’s male. He was born, by the way at 7:20 P.M. in the island of Oahu. What more do you want? I mean, I’m serious, you say “as far as you know?” You are playing to the crazies.
“Was he born in this country?” Matthews asked again. “Yes, I believe so,” Campbell replied. “Ok, finally we’re making progress,” Matthews said. Watch it:
Rep. Mike Castle (R-DE) was barraged by birthers at a local town hall meeting in Delaware recently and was forced to inform the crowd — much to their dismay — that Obama is indeed a natural born citizen.