President Obama Addresses Muslim, Birth Certificate Rumors

Barack Obama hasn’t commented very much on the conspiracy theories about his birth or his religion, but he opened up in an interview with NBC’s Brian Williams:

(CNN) – President Obama dismissed on Sunday the results of recent polls that show a significant portion of the population have doubts about his citizenship and believe he is a Muslim.

In an interview with NBC’s Brian Williams on Sunday, Obama said “the facts are the facts, right?” But said “there is a mechanism, a network of misinformation that in a new media era can get churned out there constantly.”

“I can’t spend all my time with my birth certificate plastered on my forehead,” the president added.

Indeed not, but there also isn’t really very much that he can say that will convince the 1/5 or so of the population that seems to believe these unsupported rumors that they’re wrong either, and addressing them openly only serves to give them some level of credibility it seems to me. If I were his adviser, I would tell the President to keep his mouth shut about this kind of stuff.


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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. alkali says:

    He was asked the question.  Should he have offered “no comment”?

  2. Jeff says:

    since he won’t rest until the economy turns around he won’t have much time to address these issues …

  3. Zelsdorf Ragshaft III says:

    I don’t think he needs to walk around with it plastered to his forehead.  It would suffice to just release the long form certificate, not the certificate of live birth which is all that has ever been seen.  The process to obtain a certificate of live birth is not one that requires anyone to actually have been present at the event.  My birth certificate lists a hospital, time and date, the attending doctors name, who my parents are and has my feet prints on the reverse side.  It also lists what town and state I was born in.  Since Obama has only one living grandparent and that grandparent states he was born in Kenya.  An event she attended.  And on the other hand we have the word of a man who was there but would have to have an ability of recall beyond that commonly attributed to humans and a document whch could have been applied for as much as a year after the fact.  One thing about the left I have noticed.  You have the inability to answer questions.  You are good at labeling people who ask questions, but I have yet to see the birth certificate.  You can call them birthers, you can call them stupid, you can call the a lot of names, but you cannot call them wrong and you seem to be unable to prove them wrong.  People went out of their way to try to disqualify McCain.  Not much effort went in to qualifiying Obama.  You are taking the word of a proven liar.  I know truth and facts mean little to the left as they only seem to care about outcomes.  The problem is, there are laws involved and when there is a change in the house, there will be proof demanded.  I just wonder if all his appointments are invalidated if it is found he was not eligible to hold the office he holds?  Would the bills he signed be automatically invalid?  Hope so.

  4. The Q says:

    As a liberal Dem, I think Obama should release his long form certificate of birth as ZR3 above suggests.
    But with one big caveat: that all those (like ZR3) who have questioned his birthplace, be forced to stick a copy of said long form straight up their as$.
    I would support such a position, but the problem is this is not really a possibility since most conservatives (like ZR3) would have to take their head out before they could stick in the form in question.

  5. “Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest thou also be like unto him.”

  6. deedee says:

    As always, he doesn’t have an answer.  Oh I forgot, it’s Bush’s fault .

  7. Just saying says:

    I really do not follow this much at all, but I did notice one thing about his interview.  He never does actually say he is not a muslim or that he was born in the USA.  He seems to imply that the answers are so obvious that one would be foolish to think otherwise.  But as he said, the facts are facts, yet he never stated what the facts were.  Perhaps he is so used to being a politician that he is unable to give a straight answer, or perhaps he does not wish to perjure himself.  I really do not know, but I do find it curious.  

  8. <blockquote> He seems to imply that the answers are so obvious that one would be foolish to think otherwise.</blockquote>
    Because at this point they ARE so obvious that one would be foolish to think otherwise.

  9. Just saying says:

    If they are so foolish, then why address them at all?  Again I am not saying he is or is not.  I do not know, but I have read more than once that the only proof of his birth that has been shown is a certificate of live birth.  This document does not prove he was born in the USA.  If he was born in the USA, he should not have to wear it on his head, but since it is a requirement to be a US. president, he could shut this controversy right up if he simply showed it to a responsible newspaper and it was made public.  There are certainly better things he should be doing as a president than having worry about what people think of his birth place . But since it is an issue that does not seem to go away, then why not just establish what the facts are?  Even in this interview, he skirted the issue and did not even verbally establish the truth.  By doing that, is he helping his cause in convincing a fairly large segment of the population that he is a citizen?  If he is going to answer the question at all then I would think that would be his goal.   

  10. Deb Zimmerman says:

    He is one year older than me… I only have a live birth certificate also…
    This is beginning to remind me of Lot and his wife… she just couldn’t move forward and had to look back….Can’t we just move on to bigger and better things?  How about something more important than this???  Jobs????  How about the Gulf?  Or about sending  our troops home soon!

  11. bob says:

    Bill O’Reilly dug up to contemporaneous birth announcements in Hawaiian newspapers.  I think there is little doubt of his being a US citizen.

  12. Steve Plunk says:

    I thought the best way to battle disinformation was with good information.  Since the long form would put it to rest why not produce it?  For that matter produce the college records as well.
    Americans now pretty much assume all politicians lie and it has become incumbent upon them to provide reliable documentation of assertions made.  Why would this be any different?  I’m tired of it but the one person who could put it to rest doesn’t seem to want to.  It has become a tool for the Left to use against conservatives and Tea Party members.

  13. <blockquote>This document does not prove he was born in the USA.</blockquote>
    Yes, it does.  Anyone who says otherwise is LYING to you.

  14. <blockquote>he could shut this controversy right up if he simply showed it to a responsible newspaper and it was made public.</blockquote>
    No, they’d just go on to their next hallucination (e.g. they’re now saying you can’t be president unless your parents are both citizens as well.  Which, once again, is a law they’ve made up).  You’d don’t deal with crazy people by indulding their delusions.