The National Journal has a story today featuring GOP consultants begging DC reporters to believe that the birther nonsense their party has fostered as a political strategy for years now is just a "sideshow" that no "responsible Republican" has been talking about.
I suppose it all depends on how you define "responsible." Long before Donald Trump cynically decided to talk about Barack Obama's citizenship as a way to generate ridiculous amounts of media attention and boost his poll numbers with GOP primary votes, ostensibly "responsible" Republicans in Washington, Missouri and every other state worked to nurture doubts and lies about the President's citizenship.
Here in the Show-Me State, Roy Blunt, Majority Leader/Future Speker Tim Jones and a long list of other GOP state legislators have all been a part of this garbage -- with almost no condemnation or attention from mainstream media voices. Just last week, the Missouri Birther Caucus added language to a omnibus elections bill championed by GOP Speaker Pro Tem Shane Schoeller, Jason Smith (R-Salem), Lyle Rowland (R-Cedarcreek), Mike Kelley (R-Lamar), Kevin Elmer (R-Nixa), Don Wells (R-Kwik Kash), Darrell Pollack (R-Lebanon), Don Phillips (R-Kimberling City), Barney Fisher (R-Richards), Melissa Leach (R-Springfield), Stanley Cox (R-Sedalia), Tom Loehner (R-Koeltztown), Dave Hinson (R-St. Clair), Lindell Shumake (R-Hannibal), Andrew Koenig (R-Winchester) and Diane Franklin (R-Camdenton) to keep the conspiracy drumpbeat alive.
So if GOP consultants and elites are willing to say that Blunt, Jones and the rest of the bunch have been irresponsible, I'll be happy to agree. But if the reasonable public is being asked to accept some pre-2012 spin that this is just a "fringe" conspiracy theory that doesn't have wide acceptance with allegedly mainstream Republicans, then fahgettaboudit.
In completely unrelated news: "Forty-five percent of registered Republicans think Obama was born outside the U.S., 33 percent believe he was and 22 percent don't know, per the results of a CBS News/New York Times survey."
For more on Blunt's birther/birther-curious nonsense, check out:
- Politico: Roy Blunt, closet Birther?
- ThinkProgress: The full, unedited interviews with Roy Blunt on birther conspiracies.
- Huffington Post: Roy Blunt: Obama Birth Certificate A "Legitimate Question" (VIDEO)
- TPM: Roy Blunt Gives Birthers Thumbs Up
- The Plum Line: Roy Blunt’s Spokesman Declines To Say Whether Blunt Thinks Obama Is Legitimate President
- Washington Independent: And Now, Roy Blunt
- MSNBC: "The Enablers Are Still Dominating the Conversation"
And from the Fired Up! archives:
- Blunt Stands By "Legitimate" Questions About Obama Birth Documents, Says Journalists Lack "Capacity" to Report On The Issue
- Blunt's Entire Birther Interview
- Blunt Assessment: "Blushing With Embarrassment"
- Sarah Palin Somewhat More Reasonable Than Roy Blunt On Birther Conspiracy Questions
- Blunt Spokesman: My Birther Comments Were Taken "Completely Out of Context"
- Roy Blunt "Seriously Doubling Down on Birtherism"
- World Net Daily Still Citing Blunt Comments In Birther Stories
- Blunt & Akin Featured in Politico's "Congressional Crazy Talk"
- Not Sure You Can Keep Calling The Birthers A "Fringe Movement" In The Missouri GOP