May 13th, 2010
05:44 PM ET
13 years ago

Hawaii can ignore repeated requests for pres. birth certificate

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="President Obama’s certification of live birth."]Washington (CNN) - Hawaii would like for so-called "birthers" to stop asking to see President Obama's birth certificate.

The state passed a law on Wednesday that allows state agencies to ignore repeated requests to view government records, including the president's birth document. Hawaii's Republican Gov. Linda Lingle signed the legislation into law.

This will impact requests from a fringe movement dubbed the "birthers." Adherents question President Obama's constitutional eligibility to be commander-in-chief, suggesting he was not born in the United States despite proof that he was born in Hawaii in 1961. CNN and other news organizations have thoroughly debunked the rumors about the president's birthplace.

Hawaii has released a copy of the president’s birth certificate – officially called a “certificate of live birth” – and the hospital took out ads in two Hawaiian newspapers announcing the 1961 birth.

But adherents to the “birther” theories persist. Army surgeon Lt. Col. Terry Lakin subscribes to the “birther” theory and faces a court martial for refusing to deploy to Afghanistan unless the president shows his birth certificate. He disputes that the Hawaii birth certificate is real.

“I believe we need truth on this matter,” he said in an interview earlier this week on CNN’s Anderson Cooper 360.

In recent testimony to a state senate panel considering the new law, Hawaii Director of Health Chiyome L. Fukino said her office receives about 50 emails a month requesting access to the president's birth certificate.

Fukino cited a small group of individuals "who engage in a pattern of repeated requests" in a transcript of her testimony provided to CNN. "We believe having to respond repeatedly to essentially the same request or a variation of the request all centering on whether or not President Obama was born in Hawaii is a frivolous use of department time and resources."

And in a recent WABC interview before she signed the bill, Hawaii's Republican governor said the birth certificate issue “is simply a distraction from the more critical issues that are facing the country.”

“And so I had my health director, who is a physician by background, go personally view the birth certificate in the birth records of the Department of Health,” Lingle said. “ … The president was in fact born at Kapi'olani Hospital in Honolulu, Hawaii. And that's just a fact. And yet people continue to call up and email and want to make it an issue. And I think it's, again, a horrible distraction for the country by those people who continue this."

"It's been established he was born here,” the governor added. “I can understand why people want to make certain that the constitutional requirement of being a, you know, natural born American citizen … but the question has been asked and answered. And I think just we should all move on now."

Filed under: Birthers • Extra • Hawaii • Popular Posts • President Obama
soundoff (135 Responses)
  1. JWN in SC

    No matter what the President or the state of Hawaii would present this right wing nuts will never be satisfied.

    May 13, 2010 07:47 pm at 7:47 pm |
  2. Observer

    This is bad news for Orly Taitz who may have still more FAKE certificates to pretend are real.

    May 13, 2010 07:48 pm at 7:48 pm |
  3. Dave CO

    Birther's are just distrubed that there is a Black man who is president it's the only thing they have to cover their racism.

    May 13, 2010 07:48 pm at 7:48 pm |
  4. sue

    Its hard to believe how ignorant some people are! I can't believe this is still an issue!

    May 13, 2010 07:51 pm at 7:51 pm |
  5. AGuest9

    If the "birthers" would do something productive with all the energy they're wasting with this nonsense, they could accomplish some good for their community or their country.

    May 13, 2010 07:51 pm at 7:51 pm |
  6. Anonymous

    Let's assume for a minute that the President was indeed born out of the country, say, Africa. His MOTHER was a citizen of the United States. Constitutionally, that would make HIM a NATURAL-BORN citizen of the United States.

    May 13, 2010 07:52 pm at 7:52 pm |
  7. GaryB

    There will never be enough proof for these "birthers". One could invent a time machine, take them back to 1961 to witness Obama's birth in Hawaii, and they would claim that Obama had already used the time to go back and fake his own birth.

    May 13, 2010 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |
  8. Former Republican

    Birthers are idiots, plain and simple. No more proof is needed than the fact that Obama's birth was announced in two papers in 1961. Anyone who argues with that is just a stupid person.

    May 13, 2010 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |
  9. phoenix86

    This decision will only fuel the fire. Just presenting it would end this discussion once and for all.

    This administration has taken on the "bunker mentality" last seen in the Nixon White House.

    May 13, 2010 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |

    I’m mildly afraid of what the birthers might do now with all that extra time. Someone had better teach them to finger paint, and fast.

    May 13, 2010 07:54 pm at 7:54 pm |
  11. MaryAnn in VA

    Lt.Col Lakin is using the birther movement to avoid going back to Afghanistan. He is a coward and a disgrace to all the men who have and will go to Afghanistan and Iraq. What a faker!

    May 13, 2010 07:55 pm at 7:55 pm |
  12. Snerdly(the real one)

    Maybe this guy needs to be charged with something.

    May 13, 2010 07:56 pm at 7:56 pm |
  13. Steve, New York City

    This whole effort is disgusting . . .why don't the birthers find something else that appeals to them (maybe they can take up burning crosses on peoples' lawns)?

    May 13, 2010 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  14. M'Lissa

    If Obama was born in Hawaii just show the dumb certficate. This fuels the fire and many will still claim he is not a US citzen. This is just more evidence that while we love our Declaration and Constitution the people who run our government fail us.

    May 13, 2010 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  15. sheppard

    Bunch of morons.... the doctor who did the delivery could testify and still one of these nut-jobs would find something wrong. Some folks need to get a life – of their own!

    May 13, 2010 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  16. jay

    How is it that they can comment on the contents of the original birth certificate but can not release a copy? This issue would be over if the President would just release a copy of the original. Why the secrecy?

    May 13, 2010 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  17. Pragmatic

    "Birthers" would not believe President Obama was born in Hawaii of an American (citizen) if they were actually present in the delivery room!

    What are the chances that a woman giving birth in Kenya, gets on an airplane a few hours later, flies to Hawaii, checks into a hospital to get a Hawaiian birth certificate because she knew her son would be running for President! Ignorance can be cured: stupidity goes on forever!

    May 13, 2010 08:03 pm at 8:03 pm |
  18. Smooth

    Smooth Move Exlax, now you just woke up every nut out there. You have probably had to deal with a few thousand requests per year. Now you will have to deal with a few million.

    But in this wave of millions to be ignored there are still a few thousand regular requests that you will have to dig deeply to find and process.

    Your decision just created a severe staffing problem for the state agencies and probably violates several Freedom of Information Act laws.

    May 13, 2010 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  19. mike

    these people should be charge 1,000 dollars every time they ask to see obama birth certificate and you would see how fast that would
    have stop and if not look how much money you would have made
    off these idiots a bunch of republican fools

    May 13, 2010 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  20. jts35

    It's all about humbling an accomlished Black man. If people don't want to accept a Republican Gov's word, verifiable newspaper clippings, or governmental records, it's not about the truth. It's about making a black President go above and beyond what is expected of a white President to prove he's legit. You can dress it up any way you like, but that is the truth of the matter. They want to see him humbled by making him publicly "prove" he's legit. The more things change, the more they stay the same.

    May 13, 2010 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
  21. Jackson

    Its about time!

    May 13, 2010 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
  22. Newt Limebaugh Hannity Rove IV

    Let's see ....McCain was born in Panama....Obama was born in Hawaii.

    McCain spent most of his young life in foreign countries....Obama spent most of his young life in Kansas

    Mr. Lakin...I need to see your birth see if you are a citizen or just a right wing wacko.....

    When will all this stop........when Obama serves his two terms.

    If I didn't know better, I would say Karl Rove's Swift Boat people were at work again.

    I don't think Lakin was even born on this planet

    May 13, 2010 08:08 pm at 8:08 pm |
  23. Jim in San Mateo

    A Doctor (Army surgeon Lt. Col. Terry Lakin) doesn't believe a birth certificate?

    Is this the type of person we want defending our country?

    May 13, 2010 08:10 pm at 8:10 pm |
  24. sally/wisconsin

    Finally, a reasonable Republican governor.

    May 13, 2010 08:11 pm at 8:11 pm |
  25. Jeff

    The birthers wouldn't believe it if they could go back in time and witness his birth. It's really nothing but about having a black man in the White House.

    May 13, 2010 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
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