Kansas Goes Birther, May Keep Obama Off The Ballot

Barack Obama has about as much chance of winning Kansas as Mitt Romney has of winning the District of Columbia, but it would appear that some officials in Kansas think he doesn’t even belong on the ballot at all:

Three of the state’s top elected Republicans on Thursday determined they lacked sufficient evidence of President Barack Obama’s birth records to decide whether to remove the Democratic nominee from the November ballot in Kansas.

The State Objections Board comprised of Secretary of State Kris Kobach, Attorney General Derek Schmidt and Lt. Gov. Jeff Colyer postponed until Monday action on a complaint filed by a Manhattan resident pending review of a copy of Obama’s birth certificate from Hawaii.

“I don’t think it’s a frivolous objection,” Kobach said. “I do think the factual record could be supplemented.”

Requests were to be sent to officials in Hawaii, Arizona and Mississippi in an attempt to secure copies of the president’s birth records. Obama released a copy of his birth certificate last year, but detractors persist in advancing “birther” arguments that the Democrat lacked standing.


Joe Montgomery, who filed the ballot challenge with the all-Republican panel, said the president’s father held British and Kenyan citizenship, making Obama ineligible to run for the nation’s highest office.

Montgomery pointed to a handful of U.S. Supreme Court cases to support his claim a presidential candidate must be a “natural born citizen” from two American citizens.

“As for Mr. Obama’s citizenship, there are many doubts,” he said. “Doing the right thing can be hard and unpopular.”

A legal representative of Obama submitted a letter arguing the complaint had no merit.

The argument that a “natural born citizen” must be someone must be born of two American citizens has absolutely no legal merit. It has been rejected by every Court that has heard the one, including a Federal Judge in Georgia who sanctioned infamous birther lawyer Orly Taitz $20,000 for filing frivolous pleadings. The Constitution does not define “natural born citizen” in the manner that Montgomery claims. Furthermore in the case United States v. Wong Kim Ark, the Supreme Court ruled that a person born in the United States of two people who happened to be citizens of China was a United States citizen by birth, and the 14th Amendment defines a citizen as “[all persons born or naturalized in the United States.” The idea that Barack Obama is not a natural born citizen is, in other words, utter nonsense. The fact that some of the highest elected officials in the State of Kansas don’t accept this is quite disturbing.

And, if they need proof of Obama’s birth in Hawaii, I direct their attention to the birth certificate above.

FILED UNDER: 2012 Election, US Politics, , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. Anderson says:

    Remember when the Arizona secretary of state asked Hawaii to prove Obama was born there, and they wrote back saying first THEY needed documentation that he was really the secretary of state?

  2. Only in 2012 can the response to someone’s birth certificate being put forward by state officials be either “the state of Hawaii is lying” or “‘SHOPPED”

    And only in the Republican party can someone wipe their butt so thoroughly with the Constitution that they purport to be defending. 14th? What 14th?

  3. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Kansas has the unique ability to make Missouri look sane.

  4. stonetools says:

    What’s the matter with Kansas? They have an idiot for Secretary of State.

  5. nitpicker says:

    Worth mentioning that one of those “highest elected officials in the State of Kansas” of which you write is Kris Kobach, author of the Arizona immigration law and Mitt Romney immigration adviser and creator of that candidate’s “self-deportation” concept.

  6. al-Ameda says:

    Exactly when did Kansas decide to go all in on “stupid”?

    Is there a constitutional method whereby Kansas can be forced to secede?

  7. KansasMom says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: We take turns Ozark! We could swap Kobach and Akin for while if you want, but I prefer we just deport both of them.

  8. Rick Almeida says:

    Good thing there’s no racial animus toward the President.

  9. mattb says:

    As a complete aside, I have to think that the Obama Reelection campaign is all but praying that Kansas pulls this move and takes him off the ballot. He has nothing to lose and everything to gain from this move. Obama wasn’t going to take Kansas and the idea of Republicans successfully removing him from a ballot would most likely activate the national democratic base, especially in swing states.

  10. Vic says:

    What’s the debate? OBAMA’S OWN ATTORNEY STATED IN COURT THAT THE PUBLISHED BIRTH CERTIFICATE IS A FRAUD –> http://lettingfreedomring.com/2012/04/19/obama-officially-ineligible-his-attorney-claims-birth-certificate-is-forged/

    Obama Release Your Sealed Records and END THIS DEBATE!

  11. OzarkHillbilly says:


    We could swap Kobach and Akin for while if you want, but I prefer we just deport both of them.

    I’m not sure who would get the worse screwing in that trade….. Yeah, let’s just send them both Guatemala.

  12. DRS says:

    Okay, so there’s no religious test for public office – but is there anything in the Constitution that precludes a saliva test?

  13. John Peabody says:


  14. gVOR08 says:

    Seriously–how do you maintain a functioning democracy when one major party has made a tactical decision to abandon all contact with reality? And at least the famous 27% of the electorate are eager to go along with them?

  15. rudderpedals says:

    Failed experiment requires a cleanup in Kansas’s democracy laboratory.

  16. ptfe says:

    Honest question: Has anyone ever won a presidential election presidency without being present on one or more ballots? I’m going to guess the answer is “no”, but I’m too lazy a historian to even start to look it up.

  17. KansasMom says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: You would, we got lots of Akins ourselves, but thankfully MO still manages to produce Nixons, Kosters and Claires! And I’m thinking Yemen, Guatemala is too good for these guys!

  18. Franklin says:

    I have family and friends in Kansas, and I guess I was under the mistaken impression that Kansas was a reasonably sane state. I won’t make that mistake again.

  19. Tsar Nicholas says:

    Bad demographics + too much time on their hands = cognitive dissonance. All part and parcel of the big decline.

  20. Mike says:

    @Vic: nutjob.

  21. @ptfe: Abraham Lincoln.

  22. legion says:

    OK Doug, this is a straight legal question I want to put to you – If one state says that a document is sufficient, does any other state even have standing to question that decree? Is it at all like marriage or drivers licenses, or is there any sort of national standard that allows state governments to, in effect, call each other liars (since that’s effectively what KS and AZ are doing here – calling HI a liar)?

  23. Legion,

    Yes, it’s called the Full Faith & Credit Clause in Article IV of the Constitution:

    Full Faith and Credit shall be given in each State to the public Acts, Records, and judicial Proceedings of every other State.

    Kansas would have no legitimate basis for rejecting a properly certified document from a sister state.

  24. David says:

    I haven’t looked at this area of the law in detail since law school over 20 years ago, but states are supposed to give full faith and credit to other states’ judicial rulings and official documents. So the presumption is supposed to be that the documents are legitimate, unless you are BSC as seems to be the case for birthers and certain republican officials

  25. ptfe says:

    @Timothy Watson: Thanks. Just looked it up, actually, and Lincoln was the last but not the first. Andrew Jackson also did not appear on the Massachusetts ballot (or the Maine ballot, but that was of no consequence due to their elector system); I also can’t find data from before 1824, so it’s entirely possible that some of the very early presidents didn’t show up on one or more ballots but still won the election.

    Would be interesting to see in the modern era, though.

  26. swbarnes2 says:

    The idea that Barack Obama is not a natural born citizen is, in other words, utter nonsense. The fact that some of the highest elected officials in the State of Kansas don’t accept this is quite disturbing.

    And here’s this week’s “I don’t understand why Republicans do stupid racist things???”

    Or did your post get cut off? Was there a paragraph explaining why this was happening in your orignal post, and the board software ate it?

    Where do you think people should be reading if they want to understand all these conservative statements, (since you are obviously 100% baffled evey time) and why aren’t you reading those places and presenting answers here?

  27. legion says:

    @Doug Mataconis: Thanks – I wondered if that meant what I though it meant.

  28. Gustopher says:

    Go, Kansas, Go! Get that uppity Kenyan off the ballot!

    Has anyone asked Romney what he thinks of this?

    And whether he thinks his own father (born in Mexico of Americans who had left the country as children because their parents were fleeing the persecution of polygamy) was a natural born citizen and eligible when he ran for President in 1968?

  29. Davebo says:

    The argument that a “natural born citizen” must be someone must be born of two American citizens has absolutely no legal merit.

    Since English is obviously a second language for you Doug we’ll be needing your state certified birth certificate should you choose to run for office.

  30. EddieInCA says:

    You all know I’m not a birther…

    BUT this link is a report of Obama’s actual birth, or so it claims… and I find the points in it somewhat believable…

    It’s going to be hard for Obama to refute these points if this goes viral.


  31. CB says:


    I knew exactly what was behind that link, and yet, I still click. Its like some unstoppable cosmic force. Well played sir.

  32. Franklin says:

    @EddieInCA: I can’t believe Obama is still running around and hurting us. But I’m never gonna give up on him. Kansas may say goodbye to him on the ballot, but I don’t think he’ll desert them.

  33. JoshB says:


    To the FEMA camps with you.

  34. jukeboxgrad says:


    Obama Release Your Sealed Records

    Vic, There Are No “Sealed Records” (link):

    The idea that any Obama record is “sealed” is a falsehood

  35. jukeboxgrad says:


    is there anything in the Constitution that precludes a saliva test?

    What’s required to finally resolve the matter is pretty simple, and has been nicely articulated by the Afterbirthers:

    “All we are asking is that the president produce a sample of his fetal membranes and vessels—preferably along with a photo of the crowning and delivery—and this will all be over,” said former presidential candidate and Afterbirthers spokesman Alan Keyes, later adding that his organization would be willing to settle for a half-liter of maternal cord plasma. “To this day, the American people have not seen a cervical mucus plug, let alone one that has been signed and notarized by a state-certified Hawaiian health official. If the president was indeed born in the manner in which he claims, then where is his gestation sac?” Keyes said that if Obama did not soon produce at least a bloody bedsheet from his conception, Afterbirthers would push forward with efforts to exhume the president’s deceased mother and inspect the corpse’s pelvic bone and birth canal.

  36. CAES says:

    barack hussein obama is an illegal alien

  37. The Original Bob says:

    @al-Ameda: “Exactly when did Kansas decide to go all in on “stupid”?”

    It might have been in 2005, when the Kansas State Board of Education decided to permit teaching intelligent design as an alternative to evolution in public school science classes.