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. Rob

    So 50% of republicans believe Obama is not American. Stunning!!! Of course this noting to do with him been black with a funny name. Don’t remember anyone questioning Clinton or Bush nationality?

    April 27, 2011 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  2. MarciaMarcia

    Unfortunately this will just encourage them.

    April 27, 2011 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  3. Milly

    I care whether the President honors our constitution and disagree with that "natural born" is a "vague phrase." The phrase intends to protect us from takeover by foreign (hostile) governments. Geesh. It's so obvious the intent.

    What took so long to release this long form birth certificate? If it was so easy to do it now, what took so long to make this matter simply go away?

    Shaking my head ...

    April 27, 2011 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  4. Bill Blake

    The birthers are the 9-11 truthers of the right. There is no amount of evidence that will convince them that he was born here. Just like there is no amount of evidence that the 9-11 truthers will accept. They poll saying 60% of Americans aren't sure he was born here is because of the phrasing of the question. I'm not SURE of where I was born. My parents may just be lying to me.

    April 27, 2011 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  5. DegreesOfSafety

    As Michael Savage predicted long ago. At least now we know it takes a good deal of time to create an exact replica – finding paper, ink, typewriter, etc. to match the era. With today's technology that can can position each atom to create letters, there really is no way of spotting a well crafted forgery. Alas, we still will never know. At least now we can concentrate on matters of real importance, such as discussion of the effects of his economics, such as Henry Hazlitt wrote about in Economics in One Lesson so many decades ago. Mr. Hazlitt was right. A quick read – and free from Mises.org in .pdf form.

    April 27, 2011 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  6. aj

    Doesnt matter if its now being proven. ANyone in politics can pay anyone to make a birth certificate, most all illigals do it. He wont be re-elected for he hasnt done anything good for the American people but runin the lives of our future childrens, children as well, many lives now. For you to say that SARAH, you must be an illigal as well cause in order to be a president you MUST BE BORN in the UNited States. Maybe you should focus on whats going on now, and whats going to happen in the future when there is no SSC, no retirement for our kids.

    April 27, 2011 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  7. Doug

    No amount of proof will silence them completely. What fuels all of this is plain and simple mistrust. They will now claim that this long form has been faked, and they will claim that they needed time to forge the document so it could not be released early. - It will just go on. They will pose the question why didn't he release it earlier. Same tactics and bull.

    April 27, 2011 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  8. minority

    Ok. That 's not enough for me. Now i want to see a recorded video of Obama's birth.

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

    So why did Obama pay millions to hide this info???????? It just dont make sense......

    April 27, 2011 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  10. Dutch Robinson

    Knowing the media attention getting Donald Trump, he will have to come up with another lie about the original birth certificate to continue the media attention and keep polling numbers up among the racist people in the GOP he represents.

    April 27, 2011 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  11. Anonymous

    If anyone is in doubt over Fox's conservative spin (which I can't imagine anyone is anymore) check out how they word this story on their website: "White House releases what it says is President Obama's birth certificate." Lol. Pandering, pandering, pandering.

    April 27, 2011 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  12. Janie

    All of the people who have said "we'll see" just crack me up. You know these are the people that, once it's scanned and uploaded, will look over it with a magnifying glass looking for any potential blip to make it look like a fake or a forgery. It's pretty sad that people are so desperate to prove that a black man could not possibly be a legitimate President. Why isn't disagreeing with the man's politics good enough? Why are these racists so hell bent on trying to nullify his election?

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

    There is so many things going on in the country and people are soooo ignorant!!! Who cares if the President was born in the US GET OVER IT!!!! Focus on your own family and keeping your job!!

    "Who cares if he was born in the United States?" Who cares?! I rest my case.

    April 27, 2011 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  14. Don

    COLB is not the same. Why is he sealing his college transcripts? Imgaine if Bush spent millions sealing his school records?

    April 27, 2011 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  15. CB11

    Finally! Should have been done 2 years and 2 million dollars ago!

    April 27, 2011 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  16. Rae

    So, what took so long and why did it take such drastic measures for it to presumably be produced to us?

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

    Sarah...that is the problem with how too many think... It does matter that our President was born in the US as a citizen. It is the aw after all.... I agree Joe V...move on. Saw another report on CNN that many think there is something that O really needs to keep in the dark not related to his birth. I am not a birther, but have wanted the facts.

    April 27, 2011 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  18. Steve

    As an attorney, when someone refuses for years to show a document, and then one magically appears, especially when the person who finally provides it has access to the best document makers available, doubts will always exist to its authenticity. Especially when Obama's grandmother has stated Obama was born in Kenya.

    April 27, 2011 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  19. jason

    Call me crazy but why didn't he just do this a long time ago and put it to rest already?? Maybe now we can finally move-on to the serious issues our country faces.

    April 27, 2011 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  20. jaysterb

    Like this will accomplish anything. Just like the moon landing conspiracy nutjobs, they will call this one fake and start finding faults with it. Maybe the font type isn't correct, or its not the original, its a copy of the original! Until every nutjob can actually hold the original, they won't believe it. And then they wouldn't believe it anyhow. How do we know its THE original if its the government providing it? Only originals made available by fellow birther nutjobs will be accepted..then dismissed!

    April 27, 2011 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  21. Brett

    Who cares Sarah? Are you kidding me?? I realize progressives do not care about our Constitution but true Americans do. It is pathetic that so many of our so called citizens could care less about the few documents that are in place to prevent governmental tyranny. I only wish our citizens would learn to elect only those whom follow said documents!

    April 27, 2011 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  22. KBinSA

    This whole flap wouldn't have happened if he had just shown it to us in the first place. And, yes to Sarah (earlier posting), it does matter that he was born in the US, because the CONSTITUTION requires it.

    April 27, 2011 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  23. Erik

    this has to be one of the best examples of misdirection of all time.For 2 years people have obsessed over this issue, trying to 'uncover the truth'. Of course the white house could have released this 3 years ago, but then critics would have found something else, perhaps something real (not that we all are without flaws), to be critical over. This cat and mouse game has been an effective diversion of resources IMO.

    April 27, 2011 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  24. Mike from Marysville

    Let's see, for an administration that has perpetrated fraud against this country for the last two-and-a-half years, we finally get to see the President's "real" birth certificate?! Regardless of whether the birth certificate is authentic, its NOT the most important issue! Even though we know less about this man than any to serve as President in the country's history (Medical records? Education records? Etc.), we should be most worried that he is taking the country down the path towards full-fledged socialism and economic destruction... Now THAT should concern ALL of us...(Media Matters and Democrat tools excepted!)!

    April 27, 2011 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  25. Gary

    So, perhaps it was not helping Obama to stonewall on this, contrary to what the MSM was saying. Why else would they release it?

    April 27, 2011 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
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