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Birthers
  • Donald Trump Keeps Getting Donald Trumpier

    Does anybody know where Nicolas Cage is? Because I think I just found our greatest national treasure

    On CNN's "The Situation Room" Tuesday, Trump maintained that Obama's birthplace is a matter of opinion, rather than fact…

    "Donald, you're beginning to sound a little ridiculous, I have to tell you," [Wolf] Blitzer replied.

    "You are, Wolf," [Donald] Trump fired back. "Let me tell you something, I think you sound ridiculous."

    My kindergarten teacher Mrs. Watkins told me that I couldn't win arguments using that strategy. I'll bet you she feels pretty fucking ridiculous right now.

    .

    Related: Donald Trump Wants You to Know He Is Just as Silly as Ever


    Tags: Barack Obama, Birthers, CNN, Donald Trump, Wolf Blitzer
  • Donald Trump Wants You to Know He Is Just as Silly as Ever

    Many people of prominence — particularly ones with pseudo-political aspirations — might feel compelled to temper the weirder, more out-there, conspiracy-theory-driven rhetoric once they've joined forces with one of the most powerful political forces in the the country. Especially on a day when they were scheduled to campaign alongside that political force.

    Luckily for all of us, Donald Trump is not most people

    "I never really changed — nothing’s changed my mind," Trump told CNBC, reassuring that his birtherism is as rock solid as it was last year when he briefly led Republican primary polling. "And by the way, you know, you have a huge group of people. I walk down the street and people are screaming, 'Please don’t give that up.' Look, a publisher came out last week and had a statement about Obama given to them by Obama when he was doing a book as a young man a number of years ago in the '90s: 'Born in Kenya and raised in Indonesia.'"…

    "I've been known as being a very smart guy for a long time," he said. "I don’t consider myself birther or not birther, but there are some major questions here that the press doesn’t want to cover. Now, if that were somebody else they'd be covering it and they'd be throwing people out of office, but they don’t want to cover it."

    You have to respect that level of commitment to shameless self-parody.

    Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images News/Getty Images


    Tags: Barack Obama, Birthers, Donald Trump, Mitt Romney
  • Transcripters Are the New Birthers

    Despite Donald Trump's best efforts, the "birther" conspiracy has largely been relegated to the same status as the question of whether Mitt Romney is a unicorn. Get with the times, people! The college transcript is the new birth certificate.

    Last week, the conservative blog The Trenches offered a $20,000 bounty for Barack Obama's records from Occidental College, Columbia University and Harvard Law School. The L.A. Times even suggested a moniker for these truth finders…

    What do these "transcripters" (if we may coin a phrase) hope to prove?

    "We’re not convinced that Barack is as smart as you media elitists keep insisting he is," says The Trenches, the website that posted the reward…

    That rationale may strike some as a little flimsy, given that Obama was president of the Harvard Law Review, taught constitutional law, has two bestselling books to his credit and is, at the moment, leader of the free world.

    Yes, this rationale may strike some as flimsy, but I don't think the investigation is wide-ranging enough. Last week our own Lisa Beth Johnson reported on an important intellectual leap made by transcripters: If Obama's SAT scores matched the average of the transfer students entering Columbia in the fall of 1981, his score would be a meager 1100, necessitating a deeper look at this academic career.

    Certainly, this logic calls into question so much of what we "know" about the president. The model Columbia transfer student in 1981 was white. Could Barack Obama be our first Fake Black President? If the class was over 50% female, perhaps we need an investigation into the president's anatomy. We could call these activists "sexists" if that term didn't already apply to them for wholly different reasons.

    Using means and modes to make inferences about individuals methodologically fraught, but let's not ignore the potential. For example, if the median transcripter is Donald Trump, this hypothesis would suggest that roughly 100% of transcripters are assholes. Sounds plausible.

    Photo by Rich Sugg-Pool/Getty Images/Getty Images


    Tags: Barack Obama, Birthers, Conspiracies, Donald Trump, Education
  • Obama Ad Hits Mitt Romney for Donald Trump's Birtherism [VIDEO]

    If there was even a hint of a chance that anybody could get Donald Trump to do something other than what Donald Trump wants to do, then the world would have far fewer gold-dipped buildings. And Donald Trump would probably have a normal-looking head.

    My point being, if Donald Trump wants to do the Birther Clown Dance on national television every day and then go home at night and talk about what great friends he is with Mitt Romney, that's exactly what Donald Trump is going to do, and there's nothing Mitt Romney can do to stop it. He can either accept the endorsement as well as the endorsement — while distancing himself personally from the splattered stupidity — or he can repudiate Trump's remarks and risk losing the support of a reality TV star who, for inexplicable reasons, commands a decent amount of respect in conservative circles.

    The latter comes with not just a good deal more campaign contributions, but also Obama ads like this…

    Interestingly, this ad doubles as a Mitt Romney support ad among a certain voting bloc.


    Tags: Barack Obama, Birthers, Donald Trump, John McCain, Mitt Romney
  • Mitt Romney Believes That Barack Obama Was Born in the U.S.

    Proving to America that he is indeed one of the most well-measured and reasonable voices in the Republican Party, Mitt Romney wants us all to know that he does not believe that the Barack Obama is involved in a massive conspiracy and cover-up to hide the illegitimacy of his presidency

    In advance of the fundraiser with Mitt Romney and Donald Trump on Tuesday, the candidate's senior adviser Eric Fehrnstrom tried to set the line on CNN a short time ago.

    "I can't speak for Donald Trump," Fehrnstrom said. "But I can tell you that Mitt Romney accepts that President Obama was born in the United States. He doesn't view the place of his birth as an issue in this campaign."

    It's a little bit of a disappointment, but we all knew he was going to have to cede some ground to the centrists.

    Photo by Jessica Kourkounis/Getty Images News/Getty Images


    Tags: Barack Obama, Birthers, Donald Trump, Mitt Romney