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

    Sarah....you ask "Who cares if the President was born in the US GET OVER IT!!!!"????? Well for starters its against the law and the Constitution......its people like you that truly frighten me for the future of this country.

    April 27, 2011 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  2. Isaac

    As many have already said, all this will do is change the tact to saying that it's all a cover up. I can see it now. 'Why did it take them so long to release it? It's because they were busy making the fake certificate in secret and couldn't let anyone find out.' *sigh* Idiots.

    April 27, 2011 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  3. Wondering

    AZ, John McCain was taken to court over his birth, and this was after having served in the military and having been a POW for many years. If McCain is not beyond question I can assure Obama isn't either.

    Your race card is out of credit. Time to apply for something new.

    April 27, 2011 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  4. William

    Yeah Joe because there is nothing I want more than a party in the White House that was more concerned about the current Presidents birth certificate than issues like job creation, cutting taxes for big oil and corporations, tacking the rising debt.

    April 27, 2011 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  5. TwM

    Regardless of Birth certificate we need to vote this buffoon out of the White house.

    April 27, 2011 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  6. Michael

    Racist? No! Concerned with all the lies and corruption in the capital? YES!

    No right to see the information? Not true. The requirement to run for the office requires it to be shown.

    April 27, 2011 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  7. Michael

    Sarah, I care if he was born in the U.S.. If he wasn't he is not eligible to be president! It's that whole Constitution thing.

    April 27, 2011 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  8. Aaron

    Ok... So let's see it... And Sarah you're an idiot... It absolutely matters if he is born in this country. We are a nation of laws. If we don't like a law we are free to change it. but until it is changed it MUST be followed.

    April 27, 2011 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  9. bad political strategy move

    They should have waited until the republican primaries were started.

    April 27, 2011 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  10. AJ

    Defeat Obama in 2012 and give presidency to one of the morons who raised the birther issue. Sounds like a plan

    April 27, 2011 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  11. Tom

    Uhm, how do you have a story like this and not have a link to the document? I also like how they cited a "recent" CNN poll that said 75% of Americans believe he is definitely or probably born in the United States and totally ignore the much more recent (this week) poll showing less than 30% feel definitely that way now.

    I'm not a birther, but lets be honest in reporting. Let's also remember this could have been provided back in 08 and none of this would have ever happened. Now, they have waited long enough that the REALLY whacked out birthers will say it is a forgery and have a plausible argument becuase of how long it took to "make/find" the form.

    April 27, 2011 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  12. jimiatlas

    Another non issue out of the way. Now if they can only make Trump shut his disgusting mouth!

    April 27, 2011 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  13. Mike

    I agree a lot of other issues to worry about besides a birth certificate. I do have a problem though with saying "Who cares if he was born in the US" ITS THE LAW thats why you should care. This should have been covered before he was elected. He should never have ran if he wasn't able to or willing to produce a birth certificate. Agreed not a big issue but just like Illegal Immigrants and, tax evaders, etc. WHY do we keep blowing of LAWS in this country. When I get stopped for speeding I get a ticket because its the LAW. We are not suppose to pick and chose which ones we follow.

    NOW lets talk about the issues. Born in the US or not he is not quailified to run this country... He is driving us into the ground and he has to go. He is worthless and hurts this country everyday he wakes up and goes to work. Please vote next year and send him packing. Get him out. Tell him he is no longer needed. I hope beyond hope that he gets beat so bad in the election that he crys and is embarressed about what he has done over the last two years. Leave already you owere finished the day you took the oath.

    April 27, 2011 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  14. james andrews

    He obviously had this the entire time so I assume he thought he gained political advantage from calling people birthers and such. It would have been simple to release this back when the Clinton campaign first raised the issue.

    April 27, 2011 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  15. Tim Roskamp

    A "Certificate of Live Birth" is not a Birth Certificate. They are different documents, a Certificate of Live Birth is not even an official document for the Little League that my Children play for. Everything in our nations capital is an absolute joke! Both sides of the aisle need to be relieved of their duties!

    April 27, 2011 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  16. FaFa Fooey

    @Sarah – it does matter if he was born here or not. You don't elect people from other countries to lead yours. That said, I'm sure the birthers will denounce this and decry the certificate as fake. Doesn't matter what is produced or how many witnesses come forth. They'll never believe it.

    April 27, 2011 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  17. bbtn

    FINALLY! Let's move forward please everyone. As a doubter, I am now convinced. I don't know or care why it took this long for the Obama administration to settle this with presenting the certificate. But here it is. Can we now focus on jobs and the economy?????

    April 27, 2011 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  18. Jeff in Ohio

    Good! But, why did Obama wait so long to release this? It would have saved everyone the trouble of dealing with the "birther" issue.

    I think the "birthers" were silly and grasping at straws. But, the President deserves his share of criticism for needlessly dragging out this whole saga.

    April 27, 2011 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  19. dherik


    The reason it is important is that little thing called the constitution. I had my doubts, but that would have been the greatest scam ever pulled over on the American public. I mean besides TARP, the GM bailout, and Quantative Easing. And honestly I don't think Obama is smart enough to pull over a scam that grand.

    April 27, 2011 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  20. Barbara

    The Picture of this Birth Certificate is NOT an Original Certificate of Live Birth! I should know, I was born in Hawaii and that is the New Certificate! No one has shown the Original yet!

    April 27, 2011 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  21. Bummi

    This whole birther issue is pure racism! No other president's citizenship has ever been questioned in the history of this nation. When a black man becomes president, everything about him is questioned. It is definitely racially motivated and that's a shame. It goes to show you that even if you are bi-racial, you are still considered black and thus is treated as such. Blatant racism!

    April 27, 2011 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  22. ALKP

    This also proves that Obama gives in to easily. To foreign and domestic nut cases. They should raise the age to be president to 60. Maybe then they have matured enough unlike Obama.

    April 27, 2011 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  23. Alex

    How embarrassing, shameful and just plain sad.

    April 27, 2011 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  24. satch

    How much man hours and money was waisted because Obama wouldn't do the obvious right from the start the first day this came up. Another reason he isn't qualified for the job.

    April 27, 2011 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  25. Miles

    Sarah, who cares? Well the law cares, and a lot of Americans care. Soooooo hush.

    April 27, 2011 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
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