December 15th, 2008
11:10 AM ET
6 years ago

Supreme Court rejects appeal questioning Obama's citizenship

The U.S. Supreme Court rejected a second appeal Monday challenging President-elect Barack Obama's U.S. citizenship.
The U.S. Supreme Court rejected a second appeal Monday challenging President-elect Barack Obama's U.S. citizenship.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - The Supreme Court has dismissed a second emergency appeal questioning Barack Obama's eligibility to be president because he had dual British-American citizenship at birth.

The justices without comment on Monday refused to intervene in the November 4 presidential election, dismissing the claims of Cort Wrotnowski, a resident of Greenwich, Connecticut.

In his appeal, Wrotnowski claimed that because Obama's father was a Kenyan-born British subject, the president-elect does meet the Constitution's requirement that the president be a "natural born citizen" of the United States. Obama was born in Hawaii in 1961. His mother was a U.S. citizen, born in the United States.

Many legal analysts questioned Wrotnowski's argument.

"The law has always been understood to be, if you are born here, you're a natural born citizen," said Thomas Goldstein, founder of the Scotusblog.com Web site and a lawyer who has argued numerous cases before the high court. "And that is particularly true in this case, when you have a U.S. citizen parent like Barack Obama's mother."

A similar appeal was rejected a week ago by the high court, from a retired lawyer in New Jersey.

In another lawsuit making its way through the courts, Philip Berg of Pennsylvania alleges the president-elect was actually born in Kenya. Berg claims Hawaiian officials will not let him see Obama's original birth certificate, although the campaign posted a copy of it online this summer, following numerous blog postings over the citizenship question. That case had previously been dismissed by lower federal courts.

The appeal rejected Monday is Wrotnowski v. Bysiewicz (08A469).

soundoff (375 Responses)
  1. Allen in NC

    "In his appeal, Wrotnowski claimed that because Obama's father was a Kenyan-born British subject, the president-elect does meet the Constitution's requirement that the president be a "natural born citizen" of the United States."

    Did we leave out a "not"?

    December 15, 2008 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  2. Christian

    Something "historic" about this man. At least, he is a Christian, and a regular churchgoer, with absolute moral standards: Absolute honesty, absolute purity, absolute unselfishness and absolute love.

    December 15, 2008 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  3. Mesa Mick

    Hey Wrong-now-ski – Give it up already! You're turing out to be like gum on my shoe...

    December 15, 2008 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  4. Richard Komi

    When people want to be in the news, they should look for positive things that would put them in the news. I believe that Wrotnowski wants to make news but unfortunately he is telling the natiopn that he does not know what he is doing. Our president-elect was born in Hawii and that is sufficient to make him a natural born United States citizen. Wrotnowski should look for positive things that will attract our attention as this is a time our nation has serious issues to deal with such as the mortgage melt down and the probems of wall street and the auto bailout. On the other hand, if Wrotnowski wants to be funny he should consider joinning Satuday night live.

    December 15, 2008 11:59 am at 11:59 am |
  5. TK

    CNN fixed your content...you forgot a word...pretty important to the entire story.

    "...the president-elect does meet the Constitution's requirement that ..."

    "...the president-elect does NOT meet the Constitution's requirement that ..."

    December 15, 2008 12:00 pm at 12:00 pm |
  6. Chris

    This guy's great great great great grandma wasn't born here, therefore he isn't a US citizen either.

    really, sometimes i'm embarrased to call myself an American.

    December 15, 2008 12:00 pm at 12:00 pm |
  7. bbbb3JUQ5e8L

    It's very clear what the settled meaning of natural-born citizen is, and Obama does not meet the criteria. He did NOT post his original birth certificate on the Net.

    This, combined with the frauds of his financing and election, make him a usurper. I fear the coming months.

    December 15, 2008 12:00 pm at 12:00 pm |
  8. Dennis Mathis

    He was born on US soil. Where could the problem possibly be?
    Unless you are a native american indian your roots are positively outside the natural borders of this country. Remember that when you are trying to boot a US citizen on some technically challenged point. May we all moce on now?

    December 15, 2008 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
  9. Larry Houston, Texas

    This is the Biggest Bunch of B.S. I've ever heard of, in my entire life !!!
    That is like saying that everyone in the United States is Illegal !!!
    Except for the American Indians that are on those Reservations !!!

    Where in the heck do they THINK we came from ?? How about the Pilgrims, that landed on Plymouth Rock, for pity's sake !!! Christopher Columbus ? I can go on & on, & on, regarding this....
    There's more idiots in the United Stats than I realized, I guess...

    Larry C.
    Houston, Texas

    December 15, 2008 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
  10. Qodhob!

    "Here we go again" It is un-fortunate to see this kind of behavior against the President elected continued. These laweyers ought to be ashamed of themselves too.
    God have mercy on all of us!!!!

    December 15, 2008 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
  11. Carolyn Greene

    I really wish these malcontents would stop trying to pick Barack Obama apart. In my intire life I have never seen anyone so examined for unimportant, little nit-picky things. If these people had have put this kind of interest in the financial system they trusted their money to instead of the mud-slinging gossip they are engaged in now , the country would not be in the fix it is in now. Get over it. He is our new president to be . He was elected fair and square. You had your chance. So now let us give him a chance to show what he can do.

    December 15, 2008 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
  12. Angie-OHIO

    the losers that keep beinging these cases need to get a life. face it PRESIDENT ELECT BARACK HUSSEIN OBAMA IS GOING TO BE PRESIIDENT.

    December 15, 2008 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  13. oh brother ...

    I bet If you go back far enough, you'll find some of our American Presidents that were born to immigrants. ..what a waste of time !!!

    December 15, 2008 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  14. Jose

    Who cares he won let it go.

    December 15, 2008 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  15. Greg, San Francisco, CA

    Naturally all the right wing wackos will claim a conspiracy against the truth and continue to believe that Obama is not a citizen, Elvis is alive and the Loch Ness monster is a CIA plot. Time to take off the tin foil hat – it's not helping.

    December 15, 2008 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  16. a Kenyan who is very amused by the ignorance of some Americans

    get over it...an African AMerican is going to be president whether these lunatics want it or not.......my goodness these people need to get a life.

    December 15, 2008 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  17. sunshine

    this nonsense is one of the major things wrong with our country, every thing is sensationalized to the point that we confuse the truths with pure fabracation. Bless our new president.

    December 15, 2008 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm |
  18. mark

    does wrotnowski sound US hmmmmm doe she need to be deported

    December 15, 2008 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm |
  19. Ex-Republican

    These people are idiots. Typical republicans...40 years behind the times. It will be a great day when the republican party DIES!

    December 15, 2008 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm |
  20. Dal Californian

    Sour grapes!!!!
    Are we looking at it because a human being like OBAMA beat the crap out of a white man in the election. If that is the case then America needs to grow up fast in this multi- ethenic/cultural world of today. These guys have their heads buried in sands of 1900.

    December 15, 2008 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm |
  21. Jen

    People just need to give it up... geesh.. you think he would have gotten this far if it was not legally born in USA and an american citizen and can legally be a President of our Country?? You know Republicans would have taken him on long long ago and won if it was a not!! some people are just plain dumb and want attention!

    December 15, 2008 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm |
  22. BS not Maverick

    Hey dude if you want to waste money give it to me, Ill waste it for you!~

    December 15, 2008 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  23. mike

    You can be born in the white house oval office, be a USA citizen and still not be eligible to run for President. That is the issue with Obama. He had TWO citizenships at Birth and the constitution basically says that when it comes to running for president you can't have dual allegiance.
    A different issue, Obama has NEVER shown his long form birth certificate. For $12 dollars he could clear that up but instead he hired THREE law firms.
    Clearly hiding something, don't you think?

    December 15, 2008 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  24. Give me a break

    The question really is, where was he born? Why does he have two names Barry and Barack.

    Come on, just show us the Birth Certificate!

    December 15, 2008 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  25. RichMo

    Please don't mix Cort Wrotnowski's case with Berg's. Doesn't matter where he was born since he admittedly held dual-citizenship at birth. (also on Obama's factcheck.org) AT BIRTH. Not Narural-born. if there is admitted dual-citizenship, there's nothing NATURAL about it.

    The Supreme Court chose not to rule on Obama's Natural-Born Status. They voted "present". Possible SCOTUS is afraid of upholding their oath? Can't say.

    If the electors "rubber-stamp" Obama & don't uphold their oath, to faithfully support the Constitution, then NOT ONE of them will request more clarity on Obama's admitted dual-citizenship AT BIRTH. Precident will be set. The first admitted dual-citizen at birth will be elected POTUS.

    Half the country will know this when Mr. Obama places his hand on the Bible Jan 20. How can he take an oath he's admittedly broken? No doubt, every Law, every Executive Order, every military action will be brought back to SCOTUS. This is not to be taken lightly.

    December 15, 2008 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
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