White House releases Obama's birth certificate
April 27th, 2011
09:56 AM ET
4 years ago

White House releases Obama's birth certificate

(CNN) – President Obama released his original birth certificate Wednesday, saying the controversy surrounding the issue had become a "sideshow."

Obama's birth certificate

“We do not have time for this kind of silliness. We’ve got better stuff to do," said Obama.

The surprise release follows recent and sustained remarks by businessman Donald Trump, among others, that raised doubts as to whether the president was born in the United States.

“Over the last two and half years, I have watched with amusement. I have been puzzled with the degree with which this thing just kept going,” Obama told reporters Wednesday.

Responding to the development, Trump said, "I have accomplished something nobody else has accomplished."

"I want to look at it, but I hope it’s true," he told reporters in New Hampshire. "He should have done it a long time ago. I am really honored to have played such a big role in hopefully getting rid of this issue."

Other Republicans weigh in

Earlier Wednesday, White House Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer said the debate has been "really bad for the Republican Party."

The so-called "birther" debate is "good politics" but "bad for the country," said Pfeiffer.


In an interview with CNN's Anderson Cooper Monday, Trump repeated his doubts and said he had been told the certificate was "missing."

A new CNN investigation revealed earlier this week what most analysts have been saying since the "birther" controversy erupted during the 2008 presidential campaign: Obama was born in Hawaii on August 4, 1961.

While the president has made light of the controversy, the question remained political red meat for some of his critics. A recent CNN/Opinion Research Corp. poll showed that nearly 75% of Americans believe Obama was definitely or probably born in the United States. More than four in 10 Republicans, however, believe he probably or definitely was not born in America.

See Obama's Certification of Live Birth

The U.S. Constitution says only "natural born" citizens can become president - a vague clause that some members of the birther movement contend disqualifies Obama because, they insist, he was born outside the United States.

Skeptics contend, among other things, that Obama was born in his father's home country of Kenya.


Filed under: President Obama
soundoff (1,207 Responses)
  1. Dan

    So Obama's father was not an U.S. citizen, therefore, Obama is not a natural born citizen and ineligible for President.

    I say he must resign now. RESIGN NOW.

    April 27, 2011 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  2. Nancy

    It's about time! He must have enjoyed the furor over this, else why would he have waited so long to release it. Hopefully we can now get on to more important things. I for one am relieved. His name is on my military retirement orders. If he was ineligible that might have invalidated that order and I would still be in the military!

    April 27, 2011 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  3. Chris

    I am always amused how people were not concerned about the "slide" this country was in for all of George W. Bush's reign. The recycle centers will probably see a huge influx of tin foils hats tomorrow.

    April 27, 2011 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  4. George

    Now lets get a birth certificate for Trump's hair! That thing has a life of it's own!

    April 27, 2011 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  5. Emily

    I agree with Sarah. There was no need, no need at all to make this an issue when there a bigger things to worry about like our soliders being killed or gas prices going up or keeping people off the streets and world hunger. IDK Some people need to stop worrying about who our president is and where they're from and start supporting who we have to get the change made.

    April 27, 2011 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  6. Stacey Willman

    I knew this was probably all ok. I could not imagine him getting that far without it not being ok. Why take 2 years to release it? What was the big deal? Now what about his college thesis? Mine was "Mehods of Hotel Site Selection and Economic Feasibility." For a POTUS promising transparancy why hide it? He is the president of the dems and repubs. If a significant proportion of your consistancy wants to see it, why hide it? Don't play the race card with me. He would not get a pass if he were white.

    April 27, 2011 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  7. tony

    Hey Sarah, I care if the President was born in this country. I care about the rule of law and how nobody, especially an elected official, should be above it.I'll get over it when I see the certificate.

    April 27, 2011 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  8. Beez

    So why, exactly, did this take so long? Because it took this long for the damage to his campaign to exceed his contempt for anyone who deigned to question His Lordship.

    April 27, 2011 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  9. TR

    Oh Sarah, what has happened to the intellect of our people? "Who cares if the President was born in the US"?? I do! The fact that the Constitution of the United States requires the President to be born in the US or one of its territories or military installations is pretty significant, don't you think? Having a counterfeit leader lie to his constituents is not healthy... not that I'm implying anything. :)

    April 27, 2011 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  10. TRouble

    Finally! Thank you Mr. President. Was that so hard?!

    April 27, 2011 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  11. Gene Venable

    The most important thing is that we Americans don't have the right to elect anyone we want to be President. Gosh forbit, a foreigner!

    I saw a comment John Adams made when he heard the head of the US was going to be titled President of the US. "President!" he said. "There are Presidents of soccer teams!" Or something like that. He wanted a more elaborate title.

    April 27, 2011 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  12. Chris Calley

    Too late for credibility...give me the full resourses of the N.S.A. and C.I.A. and I will produce a birth certificate showing I was born anywhere you want, any date you want.

    April 27, 2011 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  13. Mariano

    It always amazes me how people will just adopt whatever beliefs suit their political and financial purpose, regardless of the facts. Oh and by the way, global warming is a big hoax perpetrated by the illuminati.

    April 27, 2011 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  14. Smacko1

    Why the sustained, shrowd of mystery? Why didn't the Bama produce this document two years ago? This light-weight, community organizing, Marxist must be defeated in 2010 so we can restart the engines of Capitalism and unleash the power of a free market to cure our economic ills! What I do not understand is that Marxism has a 100% failure rate historically so why to people think it will start working now in the USA?

    April 27, 2011 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  15. Pablo

    Of course this wont shut them up, they will now call it a fake, a forgery, not the readl deal. These people have an agenda.

    April 27, 2011 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  16. Catherine Crabill

    This oughta be rich...

    April 27, 2011 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  17. james Griffin

    That 25% of the population will still have problems with this thing. Even though they have all the proof they have been asking for, they now have nothing to talk about. Then, it will be plain to see that this is a matter of race, not national orgin. Again, I applaud John McCain for calling it just what it is; – RACIST. Don't think the world is not watching how this president has been treated. Lord, I do pity the next republican president. What now, Mr. Trump?? Apologies??

    April 27, 2011 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  18. danny

    Its good this happen, but we all know that the birthers are going to fine something else to say. this thing is not over which is stupid.

    April 27, 2011 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  19. Robert

    It's sad to see President Obama cave to this as well. The birfers will now just move the goalposts, say this is a phony or that something is wrong the long form and nothing will have changed.

    April 27, 2011 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  20. Becky

    As a Tea Party member, it's nice to know that the establishment Republicans will start talking about real issues.

    April 27, 2011 09:15 am at 9:15 am |
  21. mikejpss

    hope and change turned into song & dance didn't it.

    April 27, 2011 09:15 am at 9:15 am |
  22. J.C. Baker

    Oh, I see. G.W. gets 8 years to screw up the country, but Obama is a failure if he can't fix everything in 3 years. It wouldn't have mattered if Obama or McCain had won the 2008 election. This country was in a downward slide long before the election ever took place. So Obama is in the driver's seat and gets all the heat – fair enough. But cut the guy some slack. It may take a generation to get back to where we were before G.W. (i.e. Chaney) drove us into this mess.

    April 27, 2011 09:15 am at 9:15 am |
  23. rufusclyde

    Let me guess, this is a forgery too?

    April 27, 2011 09:15 am at 9:15 am |
  24. john

    this is the same document they released in the past. it's not a birth certificate but certificate of live birth. HUGE difference. why can't they just release the actual birth certificate if it exists and get this over with??

    April 27, 2011 09:15 am at 9:15 am |
  25. PS

    should have waited...did it too soon

    April 27, 2011 09:15 am at 9:15 am |
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