July 27th, 2009
06:47 PM ET
9 years ago

Gibbs shoots down 'birthers'

(CNN) - A reluctant Robert Gibbs struck back sharply Monday at those who continue to question whether President Obama was born in the United States, saying nothing the White House can do will put the issue to rest.

"No, the God's honest truth is no - let's understand this," Gibbs, the White House press secretary, said when a reporter asked if there is anything more the administration can do to satisfy those who question where the president was born.

"I almost hate to indulge in such an august setting as the White House briefing room discussing the made up fictional nonsense of whether the president was born in this country," Gibbs continued. "A year and a half ago, I asked that the birth certificate be put on the Internet. Because Lord knows if you got a birth certificate and you put it on the internet, what else could be the story?

"Here's the deal. If I had some DNA, it wouldn't assuage those who don't believe he was born here," Gibbs also said. "I have news for them and all of us. The president was born in Honolulu, Hawaii, the 50th state of the greatest country on the face of the earth. He is a citizen."

Gibbs comments come the same day Oklahoma Sen. James Inhofe was quoted in Politico as saying those who question Obama's citizenship - who have collectively become known as "birthers" - "have a point."

Inhofe, a Republican, later issued a statement attempting to clarify that statement.

"The point that they make is the Constitutional mandate that the U.S. President be a natural born citizen, and the White House has not done a very good job of dispelling the concerns of these citizens," he said in the statement. "My focus is on issues where I can make a difference to stop the liberal agenda being pushed by President Obama."

Filed under: Extra • President Obama • Robert Gibbs
soundoff (304 Responses)
  1. Esco

    I'm tried of hearing about polls and how much people really hate the president. You can blog all you want...he's the president no matter what you do. Why don't you focus your energy on helping people in your community that lost their homes or worse? Hate is not the answer...

    July 27, 2009 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  2. Alex

    It's unfortunate that Gibbs even had to acknowledge these flat-earth, creationist racists in their desperate attempts to find a way out of the "horror" of having a multi-racial man in the highest political office in the country. Whose fault is it? The media obviously, including that stupid d-bag Lou Dobbs here at CNN. Don't you have any standards?

    July 27, 2009 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  3. Angus McDugan

    Just another question planted by the White House to divert attention from Obama's failures now that the police thing has died down.

    July 27, 2009 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  4. james

    This will never go away, not until the REAL birth cert is shown.

    July 27, 2009 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  5. B in Pittsburgh

    The "birthers" are morons and an embarrassment. It makes me sick inside to know we have this many looney-tuned morons running around in this country. We really do have a lot of people with serious mental issues going untreated.

    These are likely the same group of folks who were yelling "terrorist" at the McCain rallies last year.

    Sick, Sick people.

    July 27, 2009 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  6. Robin

    President Obama does not need to be a citizen to run this country. China is not a citizen and they are in charge of our country. I wonder if the Indians and African Americans were afraid of our prevjous presidents like these people are afraid of President Obama.

    July 27, 2009 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  7. Martin

    There is no evidence that Obama’s mother was ever in Kenya. So how could she have possibly given birth in Kenya when she never set foot there in the first place?

    July 27, 2009 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  8. Stacy

    Hey, I believe that he was born in the US, but his birth certificate looks nothing like the one that I have from Alabama....or the one for my son....Tennessee...or the one for my other son....Kentucky...or my husbands.

    "Wag the Dog".......

    July 27, 2009 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  9. Okey Anozie

    Benaiah .....this argument is weak... Obama's mother is a natural citizen.. Born in Kansas.. So are saying that his mother is not born in the country or are you just purely ignorant?

    July 27, 2009 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  10. Randy

    Why does everyone continue to say that Obama is our black president, when he's CLEARLY 50% white as well. Why isn't anyone, including the media, referring to him for what he is...OF MIXED RACE?
    As far as the birth certificate goes, I don't care one way or the other. The REAL question ought to be, which nationality is listed on the passport that he used to travel abroad prior to becoming a U.S. Senator? No one has ever raised that question. I think that would put an end to the questions once and for all!!!!!

    July 27, 2009 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  11. Jeff of Peoria

    .....but is he a U S Citizen. Was Hawaii a state then. Maybe they lied about his age and he was born before Hawaii was a state. Maybe he's not actually the person represented in the birth certificate and he really is a SOVIET spy sent here to infiltrate the US Governement.

    That would explain a lot of the last 6 months.

    ...or just maybe he was born in Hawaii after they were a state and he really is a U S Citizen. But that's just not that exciting is it??

    July 27, 2009 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  12. Chgo Democrat

    birthers, t-baggers and right wingers... oh my.

    July 27, 2009 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  13. Sam

    tsk tsk richard martin. I'd expect a Harvard educated professor to know how to spell "proof." Or to know how to look up the frequent statements by the Republican-controlled executive offices of Hawaii confirming the legitimacy of Obama's birth certificate.

    Somehow, I doubt your credentials.

    July 27, 2009 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  14. Stephen

    Liberals, let's get thiis straight once and for all about mr obama's lack of providing a REAL birth certificate..

    The indisputable fact is that Obama has not released his birth certificate, which the state of Hawaii issues for all citizens born there.

    Instead, his campaign has released only his certification of live birth from the state of Hawaii, which is a document that offers a summarized version of the birth certificate.

    Folks, a laser printed birth certificate when obama was born was not an option.

    This is really simply. Do what Mr McCain had to do which is provide an original copy that can be examined and put this to rest because he was born on a military outpost. Mr obama is a typical lawyer that has found a loop hole and there is no way he will get on TV and put this to rest....

    July 27, 2009 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  15. Donna

    why is some segment of our population so afraid of this man?
    It is beyond belief.

    July 27, 2009 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  16. bozo the obama

    he was probably born American, too bad he is not AMERICAN

    July 27, 2009 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  17. Josh

    Birthers are racists. They hate black people and they hate America. End of story.

    July 27, 2009 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  18. Michael

    Oh please, Republicans, please, as a favor to me and every other Democrat in this great land, please keep this story alive and please align yourself one by one with the birthers. The GOP is the gift that keeps on giving. Bless you all!!!

    July 27, 2009 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  19. Adam

    The birth certificate is on the internet, just look for it. Better yet, watch Hardball where Chris Matthews has put it on TV for the last week. I am saddened if there are some Americans who believe this nonsense.

    July 27, 2009 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  20. Theresa

    This is what happens when you don't release you college and school records.
    This is what happens when you don't release your passport.

    This is what happens when you say he didn't bow to the Saudi King and he did a deep-deep bow. Look on Youtube: put Obama Bow in search

    This what happens when you say, "Let me be clear, he was not calling the officer stupid," R. Gibbbs/Press Secratery for the President.

    This list could go on for pages.

    July 27, 2009 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  21. Peggy - TX

    Dan Holiday, what do mean the worst pres in history, He has only been in office 8 months and he has already taken strong actions to prevent financial colaspe brought on by the previouse administrations ineptness. GW was snoozing 8 months after he have into office, ignoring the warnings about the Osama and the World Trade center. Dan your accusations have no merit, no substance, and you come across as nutty.

    July 27, 2009 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  22. Paul

    There's a difference between BELIEVING he wasn't born in America and WISHING he wasn't. WISHING doesn't make it so, right-wingers. Sorry.

    July 27, 2009 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  23. Will in Waco

    There was a birth announcement in the Honolulu Advertiser, which would be very difficult to invent or plant 47 years in advance."

    July 27, 2009 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  24. Dale

    Obama isn't a citizen, the Feds committed 9/11, the moon landing was faked, the government is spying on us through our implant chips, Marilyn Monroe was a CIA / KGB spy that assasinated Kennedy under orders from the Jewish "Elders of Zion" who are headquartered on Mars...

    Who doesn't love a good conspirecy theory? Enterntainment and hatefulness at the same time!

    July 27, 2009 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  25. BaltarStar Galactica

    There was never a time when it was illegal for a U.S. citizen to travel to Pakistan. The U.S. State Department has all ready dispelled that rumor. Get the facts, people.

    July 27, 2009 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
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