2009-Jan-02 15:13 UTC
Unnatural Born Citizen
The Constitution for the United States of America sets forth certain requirements for persons seeking to become President of the United States (POTUS). Article II Section 1 Paragraph 5 of the Constitution reads as follows:

No Person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President, neither shall any Person be eligible to that Office who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty five Years, and been fourteen Years a Resident within the United States.

In other words, to become POTUS, one must be natural born citizen, be at last 35 years of age and have lived in the United States for 14 years. Therefore, the Constitution recognizes two types of citizens: Those who are natural born and those who are not. A natural born citizen is one whose allegiance to the United States is not in doubt. Meaning, he or she is loyal to no other country but the United States and no other country claims jurisdiction over this person. Therefore, a person born within United States to parents who are citizens of the United States is a natural born citizen. By contrast, someone born in a different country, who immigrates to the US and becomes a naturalized citizen is not. This leaves a bit of a gray area in between. As such, it is the duty of the courts to interpret and judge the cases which fall in this gray area.

At the time of this writing, a Google search for "natural born citizen" or "certificate of birth" brings up hundreds if not thousands hits related to President-Elect Obama. There are controversies about Senator Obama's eligibility to assume the office of President of the United States (POTUS).

So what is all this hoopla all about? Senator Obama certainly is over 35 years old. He also seems to meet the requirement of having lived in the US for 14 years. The only part that is in question is his citizenship. There are many allegations abound, from he being born in Kenya, to being an Indonesian citizen, to the Certification of Live Birth released by Obama's campaign being a forgery, to not even being a citizen of United States.

Let's examine each of these points.


What we know to be true is that Obama's paternal grandmother has been on record saying she was present at the hospital in Kenya at the time of his birth. Also, His Excellency (H.E.) Peter Ogego (Kenyan Ambassador) was recorded on the Detroit radio show WRIF FM, saying that a memorial plaque of sort is in the works to be place at the hospital where President-Elect Obama was born at in celebration of his victory. Kenya has also declared a public holiday celebrating Obama's win (also confirmed by H.E. Ogego and another Kenyan citizen).

We also know that, now, the Kenyan government has placed a gag order on Obama's Kenyan family, so they no longer can speak to the press. We also know that H.E. Peter Ogego is since changed his position on what he so proudly claimed on WRIF FM radio.

Birth Certificate

Obama's campaign has released a document that is identified as Certification of Live Birth. By this document they claim that Obama is in fact born in Hawaii and therefore is a natural born citizen.

Let's examine this document a bit. First notice that at the bottom of this document there is a notice that reads "ANY ALTERATIONS INVALIDATE THIS CERTIFICATE". Next, look at the "CERTIFICATE NO." on that document. Notice that it has been blacked out, in effect invalidating this document.

This document is a Certification of Live Birth which is not the same thing as a Certificate of Live Birth (or a Birth Certificate). So, what is the difference? Searching the net reveals that a Certification of Live Birth is also known as a "computer copy" and only includes some, but not all, of the information contained in a Certificate of Live Birth. Furthermore, according to Hawaii's own state pages a Certification of Live Birth isn't quite the same as a Certificate of Live Birth and does not carry same legal weight:

In order to process your application, DHHL utilizes information that is found only on the original Certificate of Live Birth, which is either black or green. This is a more complete record of your birth than the Certification of Live Birth (a computer-generated printout). Submitting the original Certificate of Live Birth will save you time and money since the computer-generated Certification requires additional verification by DHHL.

Another interesting point on the document released by Obama's web-site is the reported race for both Obama's mother and father; "CAUCASIAN" and "AFRICAN" respectively. At the time when Obama's birth certificate would've been drawn up, in 1961, the mother's race would have been reported as "WHITE" and the father's as "NEGRO".

Note also that the State of Hawaii issued certificates of birth (§338-17.8) for children born outside the US. The provision allows for "an adult or the legal parents of a minor child" to apply for a birth certificate for the minor from the director of health providing that "the legal parents of such individual ... had declared the Territory or State of Hawaii as their legal residence for at least one year immediately preceding the birth or adoption of such child". Obama's maternal grandparents were resident of Hawaii, who could have applied for this certificate.

Only point that is of real importance here is that a Certification of Live Birth isn't sufficient documentation for legal purposes. Obama needs to release his Certificate of Live Birth.

University Records

Another thing that is suspicious is that Obama is not releasing his University records. There is speculation that Obama possibly attended school as an Indonesian foreign student and therefore he does not wish to make these records public. What's significant about this, if true, is that Obama as an adult would have had to accepted an Indonesian Citizenship to be admitted as a foreign student. Thus, relinquishing his US citizenship, therefore, no longer considered a natural born citizen -- assuming he ever was a natural born citizen.

British Subject

But maybe none of the above even matters because Obama's own web-site admits that Obama's Citizenship was governed by Britain. At the very bottom of the page you will see these words:

"When Barack Obama Jr. was born on Aug. 4, 1961 in Honolulu, Kenya was a British colony, still part of the United Kingdom's dwindling empire. As a Kenyan native, Barack Obama Sr. was a British subject whose citizenship status was governed by The British Nationality Act of 1948. That same act governed the status of Obama Sr.'s children."

The quote continues to claim that that citizenship would have automatically expired on Aug. 4, 1982. But that would only make Obama a US citizen. Because Obama Jr. was a subject of another country at birth -- regardless of where he was born -- he could not be a natural born citizen.

During the time period from Dec. 24, 1952 to Nov. 13. 1986 United States' Immigration and Naturalization law stated:

If only one parent was a U.S. citizen at the time of your birth, that parent must have resided in the United States for at least ten years, at least five of which had to be after the age of 16.

Obama's mother, Ann Dunham Soetoro, was born on Nov 29, 1942. At the time of Obama's birth, May 1961, she would've only been 18 years old. Therefore, it would be impossible for her to satisfy the provision of having lived in the United States five years after her 16th birthday. So, Obama may not even be a US citizen at all.

Where does this leave us? The Constitution is clear about who is eligible to become POTUS: A natural born citizen who is at least 35 years old and have lived 14 years in the US. Since only Obama's mother was a US citizen at the time of his birth, this at best leaves his citizenship status in the gray area. This is where the courts need to come in and give their decision. There are numerous legal cases that have been asking the Supreme Court of the US to comment on Obama's eligibility for POTUS, but they have refused to do so thus far; from Philip J. Berg to Leo C. Donofrio to Dr. Orly Taitz and others.

Illinois Senate Race

In 2004 Alan Lee Keyes ran against Senator Obama for his Senate seat. There are reports that during a debate Keyes had brought up the issue of Obama's citizenship and Obama had responded with "I'm running for Senate not President." A video of this allegedly was available on YouTube(tm), however, it has since been deleted from the site. If someone has this clip, it would be a very interesting confession by the Senator himself that he is not qualified to hold office of POTUS.

The $20,000 Question

The real question I have is, given all these doubts about Senator Obama's citizenship status, why in the hell did the Clintons miss it during the primaries?

There is enough controversy right now about this that is getting people to question and doubt Obama and even get people pissed off at those who are questioning his eligibility. The Clintons could have very easily used this ammunition very effectively to knock Obama out of the primaries early on. Why didn't they!?
... sidster
Last modified: 2009-Jan-02 21:12 UTC
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