Bachmann: Obama's certification of live birth 'should settle' birther issue
April 20th, 2011
09:05 AM ET
12 years ago

Bachmann: Obama's certification of live birth 'should settle' birther issue

Washington (CNN) - After recently saying that President Obama should "answer some questions" regarding his birthplace, Rep. Michele Bachmann now appears to be changing her tune.

Appearing on ABC on Wednesday, the Minnesota Republican was pressed about the president's Certification of Live Birth, a legal document that attests to his birth in Hawaii in 1961. Some Americans, dubbed "birthers," insist on seeing the president's actual birth certificate - a document the state of Hawaii does not publicly release.

"Good Morning America" host George Stephanopoulos showed Bachmann the Certification of Live Birth - a document that's long been in the public domain - with a signature and official stamp.

"Well, then that should settle it," Bachmann said. "I take the president at his word."

Stephanopoulos asked: "So this story is over?" to which Bachmann responded, "Well, as long as someone introduces it, I guess it's over."

"It's right there," Stephanopoulos replied.

"Yeah. There you go," Bachmann said. "Because that is not the main issue facing the United States right now."

Instead, the congresswoman said, the focus should be on the nation's debt crisis.

Bachmann's words that the Certification of Live Birth "should settle" questions about the president's birthplace are different from what she's said recently on the topic.

Appearing on Fox News earlier this week with Jeanine Pirro, Bachmann said, "It's an interesting issue that has gone on for so long and it's one that the president could have solved very early on."

Bachmann continued: "All he had to do is just answer some questions and show his [long-form birth] document and then have people do an attestation that this in fact is a legal document and it's over, it's done. And I think the president has neglected to focus on answering that question for people, and that's why a lot of people still have it lingering in their minds."

In another Fox interview with Sean Hannity on Tuesday, Bachmann said, "This is the easiest problem to solve. All the president has to do is show it."

Bachmann's latest comments to ABC echo those from a few other potential Republican presidential candidates.

Last week, former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney said in a CNBC interview that President Obama has passed "the citizenship test." Romney added, "I believe the president was born in the United States."

Former Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty has also recently said he does not question the president's birthplace.

In a recent CNN/Opinion Research Corp. poll, three out of four think the president was probably or definitely born in the country.

- Follow Shannon Travis on Twitter: @shantravisCNN

Filed under: Birthers • Michele Bachmann • President Obama • Uncategorized
soundoff (39 Responses)
  1. TEXAN

    Jesus Christ himself could attest to his Hawaii birth and these hardcore wingnuts wouldn`t leave it alone. Face it-- his parents weren`t hard core Christians and more important, he`s BLACK. Think about it people- Jesus was born in Jerusalem and those people at that time weren`t " white" skinned.

    April 20, 2011 09:59 am at 9:59 am |
  2. Check your own "Birth Certificate"

    Look at your own "birth certificate", chances are it will say "Certificate of Live Birth"!

    April 20, 2011 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  3. Benn

    None of us know where we were born so in a sense we ALL must take the official record (or someone else) "at their word". She did everything possible in her interview with Mr. Stephanopoulos to avoid explicitly stating for the record that the President was born in this country, very likely cognizant of her previous position which was explicit in it skepticism.

    This document did not 'just appear': it has been in the public record for some time introduced by the Obama campaign. Ms. Bachmann's recent epiphany regarding its existence indicates that she is either not well-informed personally (or via her staff) or is abandoning her previously cynical tactic given recent polls regarding the issue.

    The whole issue serves to reveal her as an opportunist and hate-mongering ignorant fool. But her hair is perfect!

    April 20, 2011 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  4. VCP

    Why do all the wackos get most of the airtime – Palin, Trump, Bachmann. Why aren't we hearing from serious candidates – folks that actually have the skills and acumen to do something useful in Washington – like Romney, Pawlenty et al?

    April 20, 2011 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  5. FM

    One by one they are tested and sieved aside. Sarah Palin did it herself by abandoning her job and now it is Michelle Bachmann who rushed on "birthers" without giving it a thought first. Two are now out and many more have to follow!

    April 20, 2011 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  6. Jeff Brown in Jersey

    God Bless her pointy, little head!

    April 20, 2011 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  7. jimm

    Amazing, just amazing.

    April 20, 2011 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  8. Howard

    Bachmann said, "This is the easiest problem to solve. All the president has to do is show it."

    Yeah, and why should he have to do something no other Presidential candidate has ever had to do, including John McCain (who was born in Panama)? I know why. For the same reason why blacks had to pass a literacy test when they registered to vote. No other possible reason.

    April 20, 2011 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  9. Laverne

    Most republicans know President Obama is an American citizen, they keep up this foolishness in order to create doubt in dumb Americans minds who will believe anything. Recent polling shows almost half republicans/tea party believe Obama was not born here which proves they are sticking together on this issue to run against President Obama and now miraculously "certification of live birth" is good enough. My question is why is a "certification of live birth" good enough for everyone else in America to get a passport, buy a home or land and not for President Obama even when the state of Hawaii's department of Health says confirmed the man was born in Hawaii and have explained the state of Hawaii does not release the original document to anyone that these so called birthers can't just move on. That's why I know if they did see the original, it would not change their minds at all. They are convinced there is no way this intelligent, smart, black man could possibly be legitamite. It says a lot about where we really are in America as a country, we have come far in some areas, but when it comes to race relations we are still wwaayy behind the ace ball!

    April 20, 2011 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  10. Randy, San Francisco

    Typical GOP swift boat tactics. Bachmann's acknowledgment of the Ceritification of Birth means little because the damage is done, the wingnuts in the GOP/Tea Party accept the lie as fact.

    April 20, 2011 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  11. Bill

    Well I guess that MB doesn't have access to the Internet; photos of the President's Certification of Live Birth have been posted to since August 2008 - complete with high-res photos showing the signature stamp, the raised seasl, and the certificate number

    Interesting that birthers are now dropping this issue en masse. I guess they've realized that they'll lose bigtime in the GENERAL election if they keep up with this nonsense. Notice how even MB is distancing herself from Donald Trump.

    April 20, 2011 10:26 am at 10:26 am |
  12. John

    All these jokers like Bachmann, Pail, Trump are just using the standard magic tricks - distraction so you don't notice what is really going on under the table. Ring a bell with any of your other favorite Republican politicians or conservative news channel / talk show host.

    April 20, 2011 10:28 am at 10:28 am |
  13. ralph malph

    Perhaps the President is a political genius. He has the certificate in his top drawer. He is using this issue to make these bananas look like fools. I could see him now, "What other wild goose chases can I send these idiots on to last another seven, eight months. In the end I'll send the 'Don' out to side swipe 'em, and then the mess will be cleared up." This guy is an absolute genius to take a non issue and make the haters look like fools. WHAT A MAN!!!

    April 20, 2011 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  14. Todd M

    Either way she's a liar and no more an ethical politician than any other. If she believed Obama wasn't born in the US and is only acquiescing to try and avoid the crazy label (too late) or she believed it the whole time and was only pandering to the bigoted/uneducated ultra-conservative base, she still lied to gain political points. The best part is the birthers won't get mad at her if she says Obama is natural born because they'll believe she is only putting on a face because of the gov't conspriacy to keep Obama in office.

    April 20, 2011 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
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