Friday, April 15, 2011

Now Playing in Arizona: The Born Identity

Now here's a real beauty of a bill courtesy of our friends in the Arizona Legislature. Yes, you know where this is going. As reported by the Arizona Republic:

The Arizona Legislature has become the first in the nation to pass a measure requiring presidential candidates to provide proof of citizenship in order to get on the state's ballot.

House Bill 2177 got final approval Thursday night from the House. It will be transmitted to Gov. Jan Brewer, who will then have five days to sign it, veto it or do nothing and allow it to become law. [...]

HB 2177, sponsored by Rep. Carl Seel, R-Phoenix, would require presidential and vice presidential candidates to provide the Arizona secretary of state with documents proving they are natural-born citizens.

Those documents can be either a long-form birth certificate or two or more other permitted documents, including an early baptismal certificate, circumcision certificate, hospital birth record, postpartum medical record signed by the person who delivered the child or an early census record.

It's a stupid bill from a legal standpoint, because the Constitution already mandates that a president be a natural-born citizen. This is the legislative equivalent of, "Hey, you know that law? We like it."

(I wonder what that says about the constitutional laws they choose not to endorse.)

It's a stupid bill from a logistical standpoint, because when do candidates need to file with the secretary of state? Will everyone have to do it or just those "of interest"? Is there an appeal board if the secretary of state is a birther nutjob and decides to reject the document? Will grounds for rejection apply equally to all candidates? Will other states follow if Arizona decides to leave a candidate off the ballot? 

It's even a stupid bill from a birther standpoint, because of the secondary documents the state would accept as proof. The entire movement is based on the notion that the only birth certificate that matters is the long-form version that gets stuck in the books the day you're born. Isn't the whole beef with Obama's released certificate that, despite being approved and released by Hawaiian officials in the standard manner, it isn't original and thus acceptable? How does an early baptismal certificate rectify that? 

The hospital certificate is a telling inclusion, because that's not legal for much, if anything. But that's what Donald Trump released as his "birth certificate," so at least we know he's OK to run in Arizona. That's a relief.

And don't even get me started on the circumcision certificate. Who's to say a foreign-born candidate infant won't fly to Hawaii to get clipped? I say take it one step further and demand the actual penis ring. Let's get some commitment here.

Note too that the bill doesn't include short-form birth certificates. Which is weird just based on the fact that every state accepts them as records for driver's licenses, passports, etc. But it's also odd in that it leaves a gaping chasm in the document spectrum — a pit where you can almost hear the echo, "We're doing this specifically to spite Obama...bama...bama...bama..." You'd think the Arizona Legislature would be more coy about that. Or perhaps not.

Not that the opposition to the bill is much more tactful:

"Arizona is the first state to pass a birther bill. We look pretty much backward," [Democratic Rep. Ruben] Gallego said. "You might as well change Arizona to Alabama."

At this point, changing Arizona to Alabama would be an improvement. Alabama moved on a little bit.


Anonymous said...

AND, the bill is unconstitutional. That is because it does not accept the official birth certificate of Hawaii, which is now the short-form birth certificate.

Not accepting the official birth certificate would be to violate the US Constitution's Full Faith and Credit Clause, which requires every state to accept the official records and documents of all the other states.

Montana said...

Trump loves “rattling the Birthers cages”, too funny.

The GOP is like the "Chicken Littles” always saying that the “Sky is Falling”, like the same ones that were the “Chicken Hawks” ("W" Wars), big talk no courage. The United States, favors creativity wherever it can be found. We're apostles of prosperity and defenders of the free exchange of ideas and when more people in more countries are free to rise, to invent, to communicate, to dissent, it's not the doom of United States leadership, its the triumph of the American way.
Generations have worked hard and sacrificed much for the country to reach this point (individuals and our unions!), and with further hard work and sacrifice (along with our relentless self-doubt) the United States will rise again, we do not tire and we are coming back, no matter what the “Chicken Littles” keep saying about our nation. Never Bet Against the United States!
Our current President travelled under a USA passport long before he was elected President, but I guess the quacky BIRTHERS, must believe that the USCIS – United States Passport was in on the lie, please, grow up, you are wrong! Remember when some contractors were busted during the “George W. Bush” administration for looking at our current President passport file (how quick you forget).

The Birthers just HATE and can’t debate!
Have any of the quacky BIRTHERS presented any credible proof that will standup in court? Answer: No
Have any of the quacky BIRTHERS won any Court Cases? Answer: No
They are just mainly backward, uneducated, white people who HATE our half black President.

The majority of the voting public ask “where the proof”, show some proof BIRTHERS or the voting majority will continue to see you as dumb, stupid or racist, maybe all three. Can you blame them?

Still, I really hope one of these retreads and blowhards runs for president, not because they have a chance of winning but because I like to see the train wreck that they will cause.

Faux News Candidates:
former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin ”The I graduated Early”,
former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, R-Ga. “The I Love The Interns”,
former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee “The Huckster Reverend”,
former Sen. Rick Santorum, R-Pa. “The I Love the Gays”,
former UN Ambassador John Bolton “The I Love The War ”

I Finance Myself:
real estate celebrity developer, Donald Trump, “I took my Casino into Bankruptcy, just imagine where I can Take the US”
former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney “The Flip-Flopping Fudger”,
former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush “The I Am Not My “Dumb Ass” Brother”,

Employed Long Shots:
Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn. “The History, I Don’t Need No Stink’n History”,
Mississippi Gov./ former tobacco lobbyist, Haley Barbour “The last White Hope”