Obama birth pa­pers hit book ex­pose sales

The Washington Times Weekly - - National - BY VA­LERIE RICHARD­SON

The re­lease of Pres­i­dent Obama’s long-form birth cer­tifi­cate may have failed to sat­isfy hard-core skep­tics, but it did drive a dag­ger through the ini­tial sales of “Where’s the Birth Cer­tifi­cate? The Case That Barack Obama Is Not El­i­gi­ble to Be Pres­i­dent,” by Jerome Corsi.

The book’s pre­sales had driven it to No. 1 on the Ama­zon.com best-seller list. Af­ter Mr. Obama un­veiled his long­form birth cer­tifi­cate, a short­form doc­u­ment had been re­leased dur­ing the cam­paign, the book plum­meted to No. 214.

Since its de­but on May 17, how­ever, the book has re­bounded, reach­ing No. 60 on the Ama­zon.com best-seller list on May 18. Mr. Corsi says he doesn’t re­gret the ti­tle of the book, even though it has be­come fod­der for In­ter­net jokesters, such as the one who sug­gested that the pub­lisher should paste stick­ers on the cover to change it to “Here’s the Birth Cer­tifi­cate.”

“I pressed for the ti­tle, ‘Where’s the Birth Cer­tifi­cate?’ be­cause I thought I could pres­sure him [Mr. Obama] to re­lease some­thing,” Mr. Corsi said. “He’s now en­gaged. The White House is now com­mit­ted to this doc­u­ment. If this doc­u­ment is a fraud, then the Hawaii Depart­ment of Health and the White House are im­pli­cated.”

While polls show the re­lease has sig­nif­i­cantly re­duced doubts over the pres­i­dent’s el­i­gi­bil­ity, they haven’t dis­ap­peared en­tirely, some­thing the White House ex­pected and is try­ing to use to its ad­van­tage. From fundrais­ers to TV ap­pear­ances, the pres­i­dent has used his comedic tim­ing to mock the move­ment.

And on May 18, the Obama 2012 cam­paign be­gan sell­ing “Made in the USA” T-shirts and cof­fee mugs on its web­site. The mer­chan­dise shows a photo of the pres­i­dent on the front and a pic­ture of his birth cer­tifi­cate on the back.

But for read­ers of the so­called “birther” move­ment, its no jok­ing mat­ter. They con­tinue to chal­lenge Mr. Obama’s el­i­gi­bil­ity to serve as pres­i­dent, con­tend­ing that the elec­tronic copy of the long-form birth cer­tifi­cate re­leased by the White House on April 27 is a fraud.

Among the al­le­ga­tions be­ing levied against the birth cer tifi­cate: It was cut-and­pasted to­gether us­ing Pho­to­shop; the typ­ing is too ad­vanced fo r a circa-1961 type­writer; the se­rial num­ber is out of or­der; i t d o e s n’ t match a pre­vi­ous de­scrip­tion given by a Hawaii Health Depart­ment of­fi­cial.

Mr. Obama ap­peared to an­tic­i­pate the sec­ond wave of skep­ti­cism when he re­leased the birth cer­tifi­cate, say­ing then that “there is go­ing to be a seg­ment of peo­ple for which no mat­ter what we put out, this is­sue will not be put to rest.” In­deed, there may be no piece of ev­i­dence that can put to rest the doubts over the pres­i­dent’s birth­place, said Ross Baker, pro­fes­sor of po­lit­i­cal science at Rut­gers Univer­sity.

“If you’re dis­posed to see things in a con­spir­a­tor ial light, par­tic­u­larly if you have strong feel­ings on the sub­ject, al­most no amount of con­tra­dic­tory ev­i­dence is go­ing to change your mind,” said Mr. Baker.

Be­fore the April 27 re­lease, a USA To­day/Gallup poll showed that only 38 per­cent of re­spon­dents said Mr. Obama was “def­i­nitely” born in the United States. Sur­veys taken since the re­lease show vot­ers across the board are more con­fi­dent that the pres­i­dent was born in Hawaii. A Gallup poll taken May 5 to 8 found that 47 per­cent of vot­ers now say Mr. Obama was “def­i­nitely” born in the United States.

ASSOCIATED PRESS

This hand­out im­age pro­vided by the White House shows a copy of the long form of Pres­i­dent Barack Obama’s birth cer­tifi­cate from Hawaii.

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