UPDATE: The News-Leader reports that Rowland is willing to acknowledge that Obama is actually a citizen. That's nice of him to say in public to a reporter who lacks the capacity to talk about Barry's citizenship in a legitimate way, but it's hard to believe that his legislation is anything other than a dog whistle to the base. Republicans only started caring about having individual states 'verify' candidates' citizenship after Obama took office, and the intent of these bills are understood by the crazies who hold onto discredited theories about his citizenship. Rep. Cooper sponsored a similar proposal in 2009 (see below), and was talked about by attendees at a Orly Taitz meeting in Jefferson City as a fellow believer.
Yesterday, freshman Rep. Lyle Rowland (R-Cedarcreek) filed introduced legislation (HB283) that would require "proof of identity and proof of United States citizenship" for all presidential and vice-presidential candidates moving forward. The full bill text and list of co-sponsors are not yet available, but fellow freshman Mike Kelley (R-Lamar) is identified as the primary co-sponsor.
Why are these Republican legislators so concerned about the citizenship of presidential candidates? Probably because our current president is an illegal Kenyan immigrant.
Rep. Robert Wayne Cooper (R-Camdenton) and fifteen GOP co-sponsors filed similar legislation in 2009, but eventually withdrew the proposal for unspecified reasons.
Rowland and Kelley join a proud tradition in Missouri Republicans who go out of their way to espouse and tease the GOP base with birther conspiracy theories. Majority Floor Leader Tim Jones (R-Eureka) and former Rep. Cynthia Davis (R-O'Fallon) sued Barry Soetoro in 2009 with crazy birther queen Orly Taitz. Current Rep. Casey Guernsey (R-Bethany) also supported Taitz's efforts. Senator Roy Blunt is one of the highest ranking birther-curious officials in the country (if not the highest). He declared in his Senate campaign that birthers were asking "legitimate" questions about Obama's birth records, and even told Springfield journalists that they lacked the "capacity to talk about that [Obama's citizenship] in a legitimate way.