February 22nd, 2010
08:23 PM ET
11 years ago

I believe Obama is a U.S. citizen, Hayworth says

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/02/22/art.boface0222.gi.jpg caption="'I believe that Barack Obama is an American citizen,' Republican J.D. Hayworth said Monday."]
(CNN) – Former Rep. J.D. Hayworth is putting to rest any notion that he is a "birther," a believer in the unsubstantiated theory that President Obama is not a natural born U.S. citizen and, therefore, not eligible to be president of the United States.

At a press conference Monday, the former congressman was repeatedly asked about recent comments which appeared to suggest he believes Obama was not a citizen.

"I believe that Barack Obama is an American citizen," Hayworth said.

After several questions Hayworth added, "Barack Obama is the president of the United States."

Hayworth is challenging Arizona Sen. John McCain in this year's Republican primary..

Last week in an interview with CNN's Campbell Brown, Hayworth raised the issue of identity theft as one reason some members of the public might be concerned about Obama proving he is a U.S. citizen. Hayworth was responding to Brown's query about comments he'd made in late January where he called on Obama personally to produce a birth certificate instead of relying on the State of Hawaii to do so.

In his Monday news conference, Hayworth, who recently left a stint as a conservative radio talk show host, said his earlier comments about Obama's citizenship had been inspired by his time working in radio.

"I was talking in another context about what I was hearing on the radio," Hayworth said.

He added, "To bring up a topic and to talk about it is not the same as endorsing a point of view."

Hayworth also took the opportunity Monday to accuse McCain, of being a flip-flopper on the Wall Street bailout.

McCain, the 2008 GOP presidential nominee, recently told the editorial board of The Arizona Republic that he had been misled by then-Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson and Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke about "TARP" otherwise known as the Troubled Asset Relief Program.

"And now it seems that [McCain] would have us believe that he would change positions on that vote [for TARP]," Hayworth said.

"That type of flip-flop is more reminiscent of John Kerry than the John McCain with whom I worked for so many years," Hayworth also said, making a reference to the 2004 Democratic presidential nominee who was attacked by the GOP as a flip-flopper.

McCain's re-election campaign quickly fired back at Hayworth.

"Senator McCain has long questioned the management of TARP, declared that the funds were being misused and voted repeatedly to defund it," McCain campaign Communications Director Brian Rogers said in a written statement.

Follow Martina Stewart on Twitter: @MMStewartCNN

Filed under: 2010 • Extra • J.D. Hayworth • John McCcain • Popular Posts
soundoff (129 Responses)
  1. Conservatism equals illiterate ignorance

    Extra Extra, read all about it! Idiot caught with foot in his mouth says it was all a mistake and due to his time as a conservative radio host! Perhaps idiot realized there was no intelligent way to hold his stance publicly, trust me, once idiot is in company of other idiots he will still hold the bither view, once a born again idiot always a born again idiot!

    February 22, 2010 08:19 pm at 8:19 pm |
  2. Paul H

    I can't believe this is still an issue. Get off of it people. I am not an Obama supporter on any level. I can't stand the mans political agenda, or the people he has surrounded himself with. I think he is going to do himself in by pushing an agenda that's not "We the People" driven.
    But these people still pursuing the issue of Obama not being a US citizen is crazy. If he wasn't it would clear, and simple to find out.

    February 22, 2010 08:20 pm at 8:20 pm |
  3. John


    Please, please, please let the tea baggers and other Republican wingnuts continue to loudly promote the fantasy that Obama isn't a US citizen.

    Tinfoil hats for everyone who wants to wear one, I say.

    February 22, 2010 08:20 pm at 8:20 pm |
  4. James

    Why is it a requirement of the GOP to have less than a 50 IQ to run for office. I think that the reason we have a majority of democrats running this country is because, there has been so few choices of candidates that show signs of intelligents coming from the GOP. Why don't we just throw Rush and Palin in the mix for senator in Arizona.

    February 22, 2010 08:26 pm at 8:26 pm |
  5. I am Newt Limebaugh

    Gee....another conservative wacko who uses fear and misinformation to scare folks.

    What doesn't this jerk mention that John McCain was born in PANAMA....not the US......still makes him a citizen.....Obama was born to an American citizen and raised in the heartland of America by white grandparents......yeah ..ok...I got your "birther " movement right here chump.

    It amazes me how many people listen to talk radio and "drink" the "coffee" that is being given to them

    I will say this about the neo con conservatives talk guys....they sure know how to pander themselves to the people and get those ratings up.

    Their only problem is that when they run for office....they cannot get enough other wackos to vote them in

    February 22, 2010 08:27 pm at 8:27 pm |

    I hope JD crushes McCain. We need strong voices that will defend the constitution and conservative views. No more RINOS!!!

    February 22, 2010 08:30 pm at 8:30 pm |
  7. Ender

    Like it makes any difference.

    The birthers KNOW he's a US citizen. They just grab onto anything they can, no matter how obsurd, to attemtp discrediting the President. It's all the republicans DO anymore is attempt to discredit.

    Why dont you people come up with WORKING solutions. Then maybe you wont have to resort to such chidlish tactics.

    February 22, 2010 08:30 pm at 8:30 pm |
  8. johnrj08

    This guy Hayworth is even worse than John McCain. I hope the people of Arizona are smarter than I think they are.

    February 22, 2010 08:30 pm at 8:30 pm |
  9. Craig

    WHY ARE WE STILL TALKING ABOUT THIS. OF COURSE HE'S A CITIZEN! People need to get lives already and focus on important issues. This is a rediculous topic.

    February 22, 2010 08:31 pm at 8:31 pm |
  10. How To Tell A Dem Is Lying- Lips Are Moving

    Why not show a birth certificate,is it so difficult?

    February 22, 2010 08:33 pm at 8:33 pm |
  11. GOPBslapper

    In other words Hayworth was being deceptive and devisive for personal gain, he was "selling his soul".
    Yeah, that's the kind of guy we need in Congress.......Moron

    February 22, 2010 08:34 pm at 8:34 pm |
  12. Jacquie

    All they have to do to hopefully shut up these critically thinking skills challeneged idiots is to go find Obama's mother's passport and see that she was in the United States when he was born. Her passport will clearly indicate when she entered and left the country and it will have her baby as part of her passport. I mean I'm sorry the idiots can say the birth certificate might be fudged but a passport too? Not even remotely likely.

    February 22, 2010 08:38 pm at 8:38 pm |
  13. Dale

    All the lawyers in the whole GOP couldn't stop a constitutionally ineligible man from being elected president... or the Birthers are nuts. Which is more likely? Or maybe, just maybe the GOP is in on the conspiracy!! Adjust your tinfoil hats folks, I think we're on to something!!

    February 22, 2010 08:39 pm at 8:39 pm |
  14. Socialist Citizen Obama

    Of course Obama is a citizen. But he's a Socialist citizen, and that's why his election was a historic mistake.

    February 22, 2010 08:40 pm at 8:40 pm |
  15. Marie MD

    half truth of what he thinks
    "I believe that Barack Obama is an American citizen," Hayworth said.
    Anyone can be an American citizen. He's not saying that President Obama was born in the US.
    He should be asking mcnasty since he was born in Panama!!

    February 22, 2010 08:41 pm at 8:41 pm |
  16. hillcoguy

    He is and he's doing all he can to NOT be voted for a second term.

    February 22, 2010 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  17. Bill

    I'm with J.D. Hayward, I also believe barack obama is a U.S. Citizen, and I also believe that he is the son of one Frank Marshall Davis. The fact that Davis is most likely his father is the reason the Governor of Hawaii is hiding and protecting the birth certificate. Hawaii is for some reason proud of Frank Marshall Davis.

    February 22, 2010 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  18. McCain is Lame

    The McCain camp needs to come up with something a bit more inflamatory than calling another republican "a birther". Fact is most voters that oppose Obama either beleive he is not qualified to be president or believe that he is not eligible to be president. So if McCain is hoping toseparate republican voters from Hayworth, he needs to come up something else. Maybe Hayworth and Obama are secret basketball buddies or they hang out together on the weekends.... something that aligns Hayworth with Obama. Not something that demonstrates that Hayworth does not support Obama.

    February 22, 2010 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
  19. Wookie

    I have but one thing to say about J.D. Hayworth: Enter another lier who wants to set things right!!!! Boo Hoo!!!

    February 22, 2010 08:52 pm at 8:52 pm |
  20. terry,va.

    He may be a citizen, but he is not for American values. He is a socialist and needs to go to Italy, Germany or pre-Blair England.

    February 22, 2010 08:55 pm at 8:55 pm |
  21. Scott, Tucson

    Even if obama was born in Kenya as his Kenyan grandmother said he was, we're still stuck with the guy until 2013.

    February 22, 2010 08:55 pm at 8:55 pm |
  22. Alpha Male

    Proof that politicians will say anything, do anything, lie about anything, change their position on any subject, smear anyone they can, and generally be nasty people in order to win an election.

    What scumbags. And this guy is a major scumbag.

    February 22, 2010 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  23. Mike in Dallas

    In other words he is "flip-flopping" on the whole idiotic "birther" issue.

    February 22, 2010 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
  24. brian in denver

    This is such a stupid non issue. It's amazing that it's till floating around so long after the "non citizenship" issue emerged. Obama hasn't produced his birth certificate because his birth is a matter of public record in the state of Hawaii. It's way too trivial for him to pay any attention to & anyone who does is exposing his (her) ignorance.

    These are the same folks who deny the existence of global climate change, believe that all Muslims are evil & support Creationism over the Theory of Evolution. Most still fly the Confederate flag.

    Hellooooo out there. This is the 21st Century!

    February 22, 2010 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
  25. Republicans is smart in the head area

    Sucks when your own words catch up with you, eh Mr. Nutjob? In another context my tuckus. You were a birther on the radio and now you want to look electable. You're not.

    February 22, 2010 09:01 pm at 9:01 pm |
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