As featured on p. 218 of "Bloggers on the Bus," under the name "a MyDD blogger."

Monday, July 27, 2009

You're Either With Us Or You're With The Birthers

Robert Gibbs actually got asked a question about the President's birth certificate in a press conference today.

For real.

Q: Is there anything you can say to make the birthers go away?

GIBBS: No. I mean, the God’s honest truth is no. I mean, Bill, let’s understand this. And I almost hate to indulge in such an august setting as the White House — and I mean this in seriousness — the White House briefing room, discussing the made-up, fictional nonsense of whether or not the President was born in this country.

A year and a half ago, I asked that the birth certificate be put on the Internet, because lord knows, if you’ve got a birth certificate and you put it on the Internet, what else could be the story? Here’s the deal, Bill. If I had some DNA, it wouldn’t assuage those who don’t believe he was born here. But I have news for them and for all of us. The President was born in Honolulu, Hawaii, the 50th state of the greatest country on the face of the earth. He’s a citizen.

Gibbs went on to kind of blame "the Internet" for fanning the flames of the discussion, but you can look at media figures like Lou Dobbs and multiple conservative bretheren, who have given the story oxygen, as well as the failure of Republican members of Congress to forcefully denounce such nonsense. They should not be spared from the blame on this.

I think you have to hand it to Neil Abercrombie for forking Republicans on this by forcing them to vote on the record.

Dem Rep. Neil Abercrombie of Hawaii is going to introduce a resolution on the House floor today that seems designed to put House GOPers who are flirting with birtherism in a jam.

The measure Abercrombie will introduce commemorates the 50th anniversary of Hawaii’s statehood. But here’s the rub, his spokesman tells me: It describes Hawaii as Barack Obama’s birthplace.

“In the language of the resolution, there is a statement that Hawaii is the birthplace of the 44th President of the United States,” Abercrombie spokesman Dave Helfert confirms.

That confronts House GOPers with a choice: They can vote for the measure, and endorse the idea that Obama was born in Hawaii, which could earn the wrath of birthers. Or they can vote against commemorating the 50th state’s joining of our blessed Union. Or GOPers can skip the vote, but that could look nutty.

That's pretty brilliant strategy, shockingly so for a Democrat. Obviously this is a distraction, but if as Gibbs said it isn't going away, you might as well make Republicans feel some pain for it.

...Well, that's one way around it - getting Michelle Bachmann to use a procedural rule to postpone the vote. That won't hold forever, though.

...Bachmann couldn't hold out, and the verdict is 378-0. Not one Republican raising all these "questions" was honest enough to vote against a resolution stating that the President was born in Hawaii.

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