White House releases Obama's birth certificate
April 27th, 2011
09:56 AM ET
3 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. aava16

    So, where is the birth ceritificate???? Live birth certificate is not a birth certificate.

    April 27, 2011 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  2. Jon

    I thought his real name was Barry soetoro.

    April 27, 2011 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  3. Tina

    What is wrong with some of you??? Of course his father was not an american citizen, because he came here to go to school and I am sure it was on a student visa, his mom is an american citizen so that makes him a american citizen, nice try though

    April 27, 2011 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  4. Cedar Rapids

    'Jan -but was his citizenship relinquished by his mother when she married her 2nd husband.'
    A child cannot have their citizenship revoked by a parent under US law.

    April 27, 2011 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  5. x

    Doesn't matter. He's still an awful president.

    April 27, 2011 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  6. jjones

    F you Donald Trump. You couldnt even run your own companies without running out of money before reality TV saved your sorry ass and now you want to run the country? A total waste of time and resources that could have been spent helping people instead

    April 27, 2011 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  7. LindaB

    obama has done exactly NOTHING good for this country. He has ONLY done things that benefit HIMSELF, and screw the rest of us...And, if the Black race, wants a true BLACK,AMERICAN HERO, I suggest you look at ALLEN WEST!!!! obama IS, and ALWAYS HAS BEEN, a nobody, with exactly NOTHING to offer the American People but lie after lie...And THAT, is a PROVEN FACT!

    April 27, 2011 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  8. jane

    They should have held out till Election Time... it was a good instrument to make the buffoons like Donald Trump and Michele Bachman and Sarah Palin look like real big idiots, uneducated imbeciles!

    April 27, 2011 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  9. Bubba

    Trump said he was going to release his own birth certificate, but he couldn't find it because he was born in Canada.

    April 27, 2011 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  10. Lori

    I am so sick of all of this and of Donald Trump. If our President wasn't of color, and if everyone who was so afraid of him weren't still so afraid of him this would never have happened. No other President in history was ever this disrespected. For all those who complain about the job he's doing, please by all means run for office yourself and see if you can do a better job. This country is being laughed at for making such a big deal out of this. Please Trump...RUN for president, Obama will win by a landslide.

    April 27, 2011 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  11. jo

    @JR

    "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." – Article 2, Section 1 of the United States Constitution.

    Where in this does it even say WHAT a "natural born" citizen is? It IS vague. And if you take it at face value, the NOBODY alive today is eligible for the presidency. It feels like so many birthers don't even know The Constitution that they are supposedly trying to defend.

    April 27, 2011 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  12. R

    OK libtards, I have to agree unless this is a complete photoshop perfection it appears he was born there. A couple things though. Why didn't he just release it long ago? Why all the court fights worth hundreds of millions of dollars? And even beyond this, the question still persistents – What is a natural born American. Does it mean born on American soil/territory? Does it mean born there and having both parents American citizens? Beyond Obama, this question needs to be answered.

    April 27, 2011 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  13. the commish

    do you honestly think thats original , if it was so easy to show it what took so long , dah is anybody home

    April 27, 2011 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  14. Doug

    Wait, every Democrat in America including CNN with their countless stories all said that he had already released the birth certificate, so....you mean Democrats have been lying this whole time? Wow, shocker.

    Trump 1, Barack and his Alinksy Rules for Radicals playbook 0. Nice victory Donald, maybe the president is ready to be president to all Americans now, including his "enemies", as Obama has defined not as Al Queda terrorists but as every American right of center in this country. I know those who believe they had microsoft fonts in 1972 (every Democrat in America), will say he never said that, but the decent Americans (non Democrats) can check out his speech to Univision last fall and see his exact words.

    April 27, 2011 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  15. Mike

    oops..."natural" – before the spelling police show up. :)

    April 27, 2011 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  16. Layne

    The birth certificate should have been posted months ago. Period. I don't believe insulting particular political parties over this issue needs to be our focus. There are so many comments posted here about "hicks" and the uneducated that it should be an embarrassment; not all "hicks" vote Republican, and not all Republicans care about the birth certificate, much in the same way that Democrats aren't all socialists. What if I just wanted to see the document as a concerned citizen? Is that a reason to call me uneducated and a Tea Party idiot? Hardly.

    And, @Az: everyone is really getting sick of hearing the R word. Obviously this country and younger generations got out and voted for a mixed-race president. Can you really call us racists? If you are having real issues, I hope you'll contact me and I'll help you lodge a complaint with the ACLU.

    April 27, 2011 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  17. Anonymous

    I hope the GOP is happy. They've made themselves the tin-foil hat party, who would rather focus on non-issues than real problems.

    Independent, but I'll think twice as long before voting GOP in any election.

    Idiots.

    April 27, 2011 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  18. Robb Nunya

    To any and all of you saying this is a racist issue, suck it. You're nothing more than idiots who can't see past race. You're the racists. I can understand why you'd try to paint others with your brush though. Maybe someday you'll grow up and realize that sometimes people don't like other people because of their actions. Then maybe you'll stop blaming the world for your personal failures.

    As for John McCain, he was born in Panama, but to two American parents. That being said, I'd disqualify him as well.

    And I'm really glad Obama was elected instead of McCain. He's the reason we got some decent congresscritters in, and will be the reason we get a fiscally responsible president in '12. Thanks for being such an abysmal failure, Mr President! The pain we're suffering now will hopefully remind everyone why voting for Democrats is so irresponsible.

    April 27, 2011 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  19. jim

    yet again, foolish conservatives are proven wrong.

    of course, we already know this won't be enough for the most foolish among them.

    April 27, 2011 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  20. Mick

    They'll say the certificate is fake. Or that everyone who they show it to is in on the conspiracy. Or that they want it signed in blood by ten eyewitnesses, then delivered to their front doorstep accompanied by Jesus. You can't make a conspiracy theorist shut up...any evidence you come up with is just more proof that there's a conspiracy.

    April 27, 2011 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  21. ScottD

    Now we have proof that while he was born in the US which was not the real issue for all you who don't follow the facts or the US Constitition this proves that he is not a "Natural Born Citizen" as is required and not entitled to hold the office of President.

    April 27, 2011 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  22. a

    5 minutes on photoshop and I can give you the same thing.

    April 27, 2011 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  23. j.

    Well, now we at least know why he was hiding this. What's his problem? If he spends a inordinate amount of time and energy and money trying to cover up this tempest, what else is he hiding from the American people. And to all you insult-hurling loudmouths who think disagreeing with the President on his policies is racially motivated, you are a disgrace. Begone.

    April 27, 2011 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  24. john brown

    Why so long. Would have been a simple thing to do long ago. The Obie One is just playin' politics. He never stops.

    April 27, 2011 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  25. Jim M

    I think that it is totally ridiculous they post peoples personal business on the news world wide. Lets be real here give us real news not peoples personal life info.

    April 27, 2011 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
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