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Karl Rove Knocks 'Birthers,' Says GOP Should Focus on 'Real Issues'

4 years ago
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Urging conservatives to focus on "real issues," Karl Rove said Republicans should speak out against those in the party who question whether President Obama is a citizen of the United States.

The GOP strategist said whatever percentage of Republicans are so-called "birthers," it "ought to be less."

He made the comments in an interview with Bill O'Reilly on Fox News, where Rove is a regular commentator.

"Within our party, we've got to be very careful about allowing these people who are the birthers and the 9/11-deniers to get too high a profile and say too much without setting the record straight," Rove said.

Birthers believe Obama is not native-born and therefore is ineligible to be president. Hawaii officials have repeatedly issued statements that Obama was born in the state and that the health department holds a copy of his original birth certificate. A copy of the document has been made available on the Internet.

Rove compared the movement to fringe Republican groups in the 1950s like the John Birch Society, saying that "it took Bill Buckley standing up as a strong conservative and taking them on."

Rove dismissed as "lousy" a recent Public Policy Polling survey that found that 51 percent of those likely to vote in a GOP primary doubted the president's citizenship.

He suggested that Republican candidates could be hurt when asked about the birther question on a national stage such as during campaign debates.

"If they'd step forward and say 'Look, we've got better things to talk about, then to fall into this trap that the White House has laid for us,' this issue will start to go away," Rove said.

At least one prominent Republican and potential presidential candidate isn't ready to take Rove's advice. Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.), a tea party favorite, said Thursday she thought the president should be taken "at his word" about whether he was born in the U.S. -- but stopped short of saying that she believed he was a citizen.

"Can you just state very clearly that President Obama is a Christian and he is a citizen of the United States?" George Stephanopoulos asked Bachmann on "Good Morning America."

"Well that isn't for me to state, that is for the president to state," Bachmann replied.

Watch the Rove exchange with O'Reilly, courtesy The Hill:

And watch the Bachmann interview on ABC:

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I have come to the conclusion that a good percentage of Americans still harbor racism in their hearts. The only difference is public figures won't admit publicly but their talk reveals what is in their hearts. Many of these people are Christians and sadly, they are not following the true Jesus. They injet their own
hatred, dishonesty, ulterior motive to self gain, destroy, create doubt, fear etc. into their walk and talk. They "managed their face" just because they think they can get away with it.

February 18 2011 at 10:32 AM

Without wandering too deep into politics, I try to explain to my children in layman's terms this is about principle. We look at their fathers birth certificate, black with white print (original Hawaii birth certificate) then we look at their fathers computer generated birth certificate (the one that has been released for Obama) and they see the big picture. Anyone can have the right state employee create a computer generated birth certificate. We would just like to see the original birth certificate that he should have been given when born in the State of Hawaii. I do understand that important items can get lost over the years, but I don't believe that everyone who should have been involved in the birth would lose their memory or be dead. But in the end....being born of this country does not guarantee you would make a better leader, but it is the law and once again the principle.

February 18 2011 at 9:52 AM

The Birther's are nothing more than rhetorical idiots

February 18 2011 at 9:52 AM -1

Do these birthers have any idea how scrutinized an indiviual is before he is backed by a party for a political office, even on the local levels. If there was any chance that he was not a citizen he would never have made it to the primaries. They should just stop the craziness and focus on the important issues of our time.

February 18 2011 at 9:44 AM +7
1 reply to thetutors's comment

do you have any idea how much time and money has been spent to hide his birth certificate? why wasnt it released when first asked for? craziness is a muslim president!!! as for background checks, have you seen the criminal records of some politicians?

February 18 2011 at 10:49 AM
Big John

Is this not the same man that convinced so many people that if you are a Democrat or Independent you cannot be a Christian or love your country? How much more divisional and misleading can you get!

February 18 2011 at 9:42 AM +23

As a conservative, I am not all too thrilled with Carl Rove. I see him as part of the old guard Republicans, but not a Conservative spokesman. Maybe more of a moderate to liberal Republican. The mistake is made by the media when they see, or promote him as a leader of the Conservatives. They may feel that, but we don't. Carl Rove served as Bush's chief of staff, but hasn't done enought to back "Tea Party" Conservatives. Remember we are not necesasarily all Rerpublicans, but Coinservatives, made up of Independents, Libertarians, Constitutionalist, and Republicans. What Mr. Rove fails to see is, we Conservatives can "multitask", and we do not march with blinders on. But we will never be satisfied or let up on Obama until the truth is proven, about the "Birth Certificate Issue" He has spent over $2 million dollars hiding this from the public. That, along with his record of lying, is enought to suspect he is lying about his birth. This will never go away, because if proven he is not elegible to be President, everything he did will be nullified and illegal. That is what we want. We want him not only kicked out of office but made a laughing stock of the world. This will shine a true light on Socialist/Liberal/Progressives everywhere and show their true colors and agenda to destroy America.

February 18 2011 at 9:31 AM -19
4 replies to BRYAN STEILKIE's comment

I am not a birther, I am a christian and I am not qualified to say whether Obama is or not. I don't see how a person can be a christian and support the killing of unborn children. I do however have a question.

To refresh your memory:
Obama has lived for almost 50 years without leaving any footprints -- none! There is no Obama documentation -- no bona fides -- no paper trail -- nothing.

Original, vault copy birth certificate -- Not released (lawyers' fees greater than $2,000,000 ~ birth certificate is $15)
Certification of Live Birth -- Released -- Counterfeit
Amended Certification of Live Birth -- Released -- Counterfeit
Obama/Dunham marriage license -- Not released (if one exists)

Obama/Dunham divorce -- Released (by independent investigators)

Noelani Kindergarten records -- Records lost (this is a big one -- read two frames)
Soetoro/Dunham marriage license -- Not released
Soetoro adoption records -- Not released

Fransiskus Assisi School School application -- Released (by independent investigators)

Punahou School application -- Missing
Punahou School records -- Not released

Noelani 3rd Grade records -- Not released
Soetoro/Dunham divorce -- Released (by independent investigators)

Selective Service Registration -- Released -- Under suspicion

Social Security Number -- Released (by independent investigators) -- Under suspicion
Occidental College records -- Not released

Financial Aid Records -- Not released
Passport -- Not released and records scrubbed clean by Obama's terrorism and intelligence adviser
Columbia College records -- Not released
Columbia thesis -- "Soviet Nuclear Disarmament" -- Not released
Harvard College records -- Not released
Harvard Law Review articles -- None

Illinois Bar Records -- Not released
Baptism certificate -- None
Medical records -- Not released -- nor is the source of this nasty scar
Illinois State Senate records -- None
Illinois State Senate schedule -- Lost
Law practice client list -- Not released
University of Chicago scholarly articles -- None

White House Visitors list -- The complete list

The Blagojevich Interview -- judge denies access to the FBI report

The Illinois State Archives told Judicial Watch that they never received any request from Senator Obama to archive any records in his possession. In 2007, Obama told Tim Russert that his records were "not kept."

And there's less on the web every day. In time, the entire Obama body of knowledge will consist of 3 documents -- "Dreams From My Father" -- "The Audacity of Hope" -- and the latest -- "Change We Can Believe In" -- all written by Barack Hussein Obama or his "ghost-writers."

My Question, WHY?

February 18 2011 at 9:21 AM -1

Obama the Constitutional scholar knows he's not qualified because he knows this:

Vattel's Law of Nations (used to write the Constitution, proof below) states both parents must be citizens at the time of the child's birth for the child to be natural born.

Def of natural born in Vattel's Law of Nations:

Benjamin Franklin's letter to Charles W.F. Dumas, December 1775:

I am much obliged by the kind present you have made us of your edition of Vattel. It came to us in good season, when the circumstances of a rising state make it necessary frequently to consult the Law of Nations. Accordingly, that copy which I kept (after depositing one in our own public library here, and send the other to the College of Massachusetts Bay, as you directed) has been continually in the hands of the members of our congress, now sitting, who are much pleased with your notes and preface, and have entertained a high and just esteem for their author

February 18 2011 at 9:16 AM -13
2 replies to purplegrapes117's comment

Obama is the chap who claimed to have been a professor of law and a constitutional scholar. He is neither. He was never more than a hired lecturer at Chicago Law (hired at the direction of a trustee without a search for the best qualified). He had no chance of ever becoming even an assistant professor (the lowest rank). Photos of him at the blackboard show him diagraming Saul Alinsky's Rules for Radicals.(Nothing to do with the Constitution). Obama's view of the Constitution is that it is flawed -- doesn't give stuff to the people -- commie style. He is the last man on Earth to be teaching the US Constitution.

February 18 2011 at 9:31 AM +16

If I remember my U.S. history correctly, Chester Arthur's father was a British subject born in Ireland, and I'm not sure that he was every naturalized. Further, there was speculation that Arthur was born in Canada.

February 18 2011 at 10:47 AM

If Rove really said "Look, we've got better things to talk about than to fall into this trap that the White House has laid for us" then he is even more diabolical than I believed. It is the President's fault that a large number of republicans are so crazed that he is President, that they choose to believe he was not born in the US! "SPIN" doesn't even begin to describe this kind of thinking

February 18 2011 at 7:53 AM +30

Number one, the president do not have to keep stooping to the demands of people who would not believe anything that would prove where he was born or who he worship. You talk about freedom of speech well, he has spoken and shown where he was born and who he worship.

number two, if he was not a miniorty he would not be ask to do any of the dumb things that have been asked of him. Get use to the idea of having a miniorty in the white house as president because he is not going to be the last and they will more than likely be democratic.

Get over the brainwashing that was past down through generations that despite of all the progress that had been made, miniorties will be always in the back of the bus in your mind. Those days are over, so grow up get with this generation and leave the past in the past.

This president has been critized for things that all the presidents before him have done, he can't take a vacation with being put down, he can't attend a church unless he is being put down, his family can't do anything unless some nut don't like it and then put them down. He have been disrespected more than any president I have every heard of.

People talk about blacks as being dumb and crazy. But no matter how much the presidents before this have done things to try to keep them down, never ever disrespected them to the point where this president has been. They tells people that something is terrible wrong with the group of people who now do this to the president. Yet they claim they are christians, this is the reason young people do not want to be classified as christians because what these so called christians are doing. I do not know who they serve but it sure is not the God of love for all fellow man, the one who tells you not to throw stones unless you are perfect in every way. Inspite of what these so called people are doing, I wonder how many of their stones will come unturn in the very near future

February 18 2011 at 7:48 AM -6

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