Here is an interesting wrinkle from Arizona which may have a serious Constitutional impediment:
PHOENIX -- The Arizona House on Monday voted for a provision that would require President Barack
Obamato show his birth certificate if he hopes to be on the state's ballot when he runs for reelection.
The House voted 31-22 to add the provision to a separate bill. The measure still faces a formal vote.
It would require U.S. presidential candidates who want to appear on the ballot in Arizona to submit documents proving they meet the constitutional requirements to be president.
Who asked them? The US Constitution does not specify an enforcement mechanism for the "natural born" requirement, but it is clear that the good people of the great state of Arizona will not be voting for Barack Obama in the 2012 general election. Instead, they will be voting for electors who will cast their votes as per the procedures of the Electoral College.
In Arizona, Presidential electors must themselves meet eligibility requirements, but they are aligned by party, not specific candidate:
A. The chairman of the state committee of a political party which is qualified for representation on an official party ballot at the primary election and accorded a column on the general election ballot shall appoint candidates for the office of presidential elector equal to the number of United States senators and representatives in Congress from this state and shall file for each candidate with the secretary of state, not less than ninety days or more than one hundred twenty days before the primary election, by 5:00 p.m. on the last day for filing:
1. A nomination paper giving the candidate's actual residence address or description of place of residence and post office address, naming the party of which the candidate desires to become a candidate, stating his candidacy for the office of presidential elector, stating the exact manner in which the candidate desires to have his name printed on the official ballot pursuant to section 16-311, subsection G, and stating the date of the general election at which he desires to become a candidate.
2. An affidavit including facts sufficient to show that the candidate resides in this state and will be qualified at the time of the election to hold the office of presidential elector.
B. The nomination paper and affidavit of qualification pursuant to subsection A of this section shall be printed in a form prescribed by the secretary of state.
They can't disqualify the whole Democratic Party, can they?
Well, maybe - give lawyers a place to rest their fulcrum and they will move the word. Or sue it.
And they may be able to bar Obama from the state primary election although even that is not immediately obvious - it may be that even in the primary, voters choose slates of Arizonans committed to various Presidential candidates rather than the candidates themselves.
Tricky. My belief is that it is the US Congress, under the 12th Amendment, that enforces the "natural born" requirement by accepting or rejecting the results of the Electoral College. I am sure a state could not impose its own eligibility requirements beyond those of the Constitution, but I am hazy as to whether a state would have some right to independently verify Constitutional eligibility to assure that their electors' votes are not being "wasted".
As to the specific question of Obama's birth - geez, presumably they want the long form birth certificate that includes a hospital and an attending physician, not just the summary short form declaring Obama was born in Honolulu. The obvious problem is that the more extensive documentation backing the short form (held by the Hawaii Dept. of Health, and which would be made available at Obama's request) may not *prove* anything.
Far and away the most likely result is that we learn that official state records indicate Obama was born at "Kapiolani Maternity and Gynecological Hospital, now called Kapi'olani Medical Center for Women & Children". For a lot of people, that would settle it; for some, it will simply be evidence that a particular form was generated back in 1961, not that an actual birth took place when and where the form states.
And the long shot is that the supporting documentation is simply affidavits from Obama's mother and maternal grandparents asserting that he was born in Hawaii at their home (maybe the car wouldn't start so she couldn't get to the hospital.) Again, that might well be the truth, but it might not be the "proof" some people are looking for.
Next, I suppose people could search State Department records from 1961 to see whether there is a record of Stanley Dunham leaving the country and returning after Obama's reported birth. If those records cannot be found, is that "proof" that Obama was born in the US, a suggestion of incomplete paperwork, or a hint that Rahm Emmanuel is now doing what needs to be done? No, I am not sure where this ends...
However, if Arizona can persuade Team Obama to ask for and release the complete file and shut a few people up, I am all for it. Maybe we can look forward to a respectful Times story detailing their search for "the truth". OK, probably not. Meanwhile, the most transparent Administration in history is either fueling partisan rancor for their own benefit or hiding something.