October 29th, 2009
07:15 PM ET
13 years ago

Judge dismisses suit about Obama's eligibility to be president

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/10/29/art.obama1029.gi.jpg caption="Judge dismisses suit about Obama's eligibility to be president."]
(CNN) - President Barack Obama may have one less problem to worry about.

A federal judge on Thursday dismissed a lawsuit that claimed Obama is ineligible to be president because he isn't a bona fide U.S. citizen.

The lawsuit represented the claim by the so-called "birthers" movement that Obama was not born in Hawaii - despite a birth certificate to the contrary - or that if he was, his citizenship was invalidated by living overseas as a child.

In a 30-page ruling, U.S. District Judge David O. Carter of California said his court lacked the jurisdiction to rule on a case intended to unseat a sitting president.

Carter's ruling said the plaintiffs were trying to persuade him to "disregard the constitutional procedures in place for the removal of a sitting president."

"The process for removal of a sitting president - removal for any reason - is within the province of Congress, not the courts," the ruling said.

Carter's ruling also noted that the plaintiffs "have attacked the judiciary, including every prior court that has dismissed their claim, as unpatriotic and even treasonous for refusing to grant their requests and for adhering to the terms of the Constitution."

"Respecting the constitutional role and jurisdiction of this court is not unpatriotic," the ruling said. "Quite the contrary, this court considers commitment to that constitutional role to be the ultimate reflection of patriotism."

Filed under: Extra • Popular Posts • President Obama
soundoff (300 Responses)
  1. Chris

    Several people have remarked that Obama could put the matter to rest by producing his birth certificate. He has, multiple times. He was born in the US, Hawaii was a when he was born; therefore, he's a "natural born citizen." Case closed–as it should have been long, long ago.

    October 29, 2009 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  2. Cindi

    If Obama had a name like Smith or Jones, he would not be under such attack.

    October 29, 2009 10:00 pm at 10:00 pm |
  3. ThinkAgain

    So let me get this straight: According to the "birthers," President Obama is the result of an elaborate plot hatched on August 4, 1961 in Hawaii.

    Two people, Barack Obama, Sr. (Kenyan) and Ann Dunham (Kansan), conspire to place birth announcements in the Honolulu Advertiser and the Star Bulletin, saying they have had a son.

    Fast-forward 47 years later ... both Obama Sr. and Ms. Dunham have passed away, but their nefarious plot lives on and has succeeded in electing the first non-U.S. citizen as American President!!!!

    Wow – pretty impressive, eh? The part about "birthers" obviously needing to accept the fact that they lost and need to get a life, that is ...

    October 29, 2009 10:04 pm at 10:04 pm |
  4. Jacques

    I like Obama.
    But If he is not a citizen, per both the letter & the spirit of the law, then the VP should assume the presidency.

    If Obama is not a legal president, and the courts allow this, laws and the Constitution mean little to nothing.

    October 29, 2009 10:05 pm at 10:05 pm |
  5. Jeno64

    If he would just present a Birth Certificate this would all go away. Why doesn't he?

    October 29, 2009 10:05 pm at 10:05 pm |
  6. RJ Koser

    Birthers et al don't deserve a comment.

    October 29, 2009 10:05 pm at 10:05 pm |
  7. Darwin

    These dillweeds have been around since before the election trying to pass this junk off as the "truth." It is a shame that these idiots are part of the gene pool. Too bad Darwin's theory of survival of the fittest didn't include people who actually had brains.

    October 29, 2009 10:06 pm at 10:06 pm |
  8. Rob

    To all the people saying that Obama should "just provide his birth certificate", he already has, several times, in several forms. The fact that he was legally born in the USA is without question. Case closed.

    The problem is that you have a bunch of conspiracy theorists who will *never* believe he was legally born in the USA, no matter what the actual evidence is. They *choose* to believe this nonsense without any proof, and no one will ever be able to convince them otherwise.

    It's just very sad that such a small minority of essentially crazy people are granted such unbalanced attention by the media. They should go back to claiming Big Foot exists, or that aliens from outer space have kidnapped them and performed experiments on them.

    October 29, 2009 10:06 pm at 10:06 pm |
  9. gl, Pittsburgh

    Why would President Obama put an end to this story when it makes the GOP look like nuts.

    October 29, 2009 10:06 pm at 10:06 pm |
  10. Dana

    That was a stupid suit charged up by the repubs. They need to get life and help with some ideas to get us out of this mess.

    October 29, 2009 10:07 pm at 10:07 pm |
  11. ThinkAgain

    To everyone who says President Obama needs to grant "us" access to his birth certificate:

    "We" already have had access to it, in the form of investigative reporters (the legit kind – not the paranoid kind), the FBI, the Secret Service, the INS and whomever it is that the state of Illinois hires to do their citizenship checking (my guess is they get that info from the Feds).

    "We" have had access and President Obama's birth certificate is authentic.

    So give it a rest, already!

    October 29, 2009 10:08 pm at 10:08 pm |
  12. Ted

    No matter how you feel about this issue, the fact remains that Obama has never produced a legal birth certificate.

    I was recently required to provide my birth certificate, and submitted the "certification of birth" just like Obama's. This was rejected because it is simply a printout from a computer database, and databases can be altered.

    I was required to unearth the original "birth certificate," which is the original vintage document prepared at the birth, with the emossed / crimped seal and stamp.

    Obama has never produced this document. Why is it that we require ordinary citizens to produce this original document as evidence of birth for very basic legal procedures, yet for validating eligibility for the leader of the free world, we do not require the same rigor?

    Regardless of how you feel about Obama, doesn't this bother you?

    October 29, 2009 10:09 pm at 10:09 pm |
  13. Cybersport

    The underlying reason for all this is racism. Certainly not all who are opposed to the President's policies are racist. But there are a lot of people in this nation who can't deal with the idea of an African-American president.

    Here's the deal folks. Obama was born in Hawaii after it becasme a state. That makes him a citizen, regardless of where his mother lived or where he has lived since then.

    Why do people have such a hard time grasping that?

    October 29, 2009 10:09 pm at 10:09 pm |
  14. Gloria

    Why give these people any press at all???

    October 29, 2009 10:44 pm at 10:44 pm |
  15. dentalleagulservise4higher

    I wouldn't hire this person to be my counselor nor to clean my teeth. Her facts are so screwed up. Maybe if she drops this so called "Birthers" group she might get some clientel for any of her so called "Practices" but than again I wouldn't consider a retainer for this disturbing attorney/dentist.

    October 29, 2009 10:48 pm at 10:48 pm |
  16. Gporgie

    And the Republicans wonder why so few people will admit to being one them. The party is being deserted by the rational leaving behind only kooks and nut jobs and fat whiners who only complain and don't offer solutions.

    Xenophobes, homophobes, flat Earthers, Christian fanatics, etc. That's pretty much what being a Republican means now, you are one of the afore mentioned.

    October 29, 2009 10:49 pm at 10:49 pm |
  17. Snoopy

    So what happens if he wasn't born in the USA? Ok, he's not president...does that mean the birthers want Joe Binden to be Prez?

    Or do they think McCain the maverick would step up...so what's the big deal. I guess the millions of people and Congress are total idiots because Obama 'played' everyone.

    WOW, Obama is the man if he can pull the wool over all of our eyes.

    October 29, 2009 10:50 pm at 10:50 pm |
  18. Sadek

    Lets put this whole thing to rest finally. I am sick an tired of hearing about these clowns and jokers. They are wasting our hard earning tax payers money to help pay for her crazy unfounded stores. The courts should make her pay personally for such a frivolous claim, lacking any substantial claim, and proof in this matter what so ever.
    And i think the republicans party should be sued for pursuing and backing such claims.

    October 29, 2009 10:50 pm at 10:50 pm |
  19. tony

    So they didn't get their old man born in Panama into office and this is what we end up with: another frivolous lawsuit.

    October 29, 2009 10:51 pm at 10:51 pm |
  20. Eugene

    Is it so hard to READ a legal birth certificate? Exactly what part of proof do you "birthers" find most disturbing-perhaps, for starters his skin color?

    October 29, 2009 10:52 pm at 10:52 pm |
  21. Elizabeth

    I consider this issue scarcely worthy of a comment. The President was born TO an American citizen ~ it does not matter WHERE ~ although I believe that he was born in Hawaii, which was a state in 1961. Even if he had not been born on U.S. soil, if he is not a "naural born citizen," then neither are all the "army brats" and other children of American citizens who were born offshore. The birthers' argument is rdiculous!

    October 29, 2009 10:53 pm at 10:53 pm |
  22. want what's fair

    If Carter had ruled the other way, allowing discovery and trial.... the story would never have made it to main stream media..

    It only appeared here in CNN because of the monetary strength and power of the Obama machine.

    This is not justice, it is caving to power.

    October 29, 2009 10:55 pm at 10:55 pm |
  23. Howard Logan

    Why do you put your personal ideology ahead of the good of the country??? Put aside your hatred and allow the USA to move forward.

    October 29, 2009 10:56 pm at 10:56 pm |
  24. It is not eligible - it is competency that is the question

    It is not a question if Oblamo is eligible to be President, but rather if he is competent to be President. I think we have witnessed thus far that he is in way over his head.

    Our only hope as a bation is that the Democrap controlled Congress keeps falling over themselves failing to pass any legislation for the remainder of Oblamo's term.

    October 29, 2009 10:57 pm at 10:57 pm |
  25. Bay Area

    The birth certificate has been produced. A while back I read an exhaustive analysis of it with high scan photos and all. There is nothing hidden, nothing left to discuss. Enough already.

    October 29, 2009 10:59 pm at 10:59 pm |
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