April 22, 2011
OKLAHOMA CITY — Investigations have concluded that President Obama was, in fact, born in Hawaii in 1961, as he has always said.
Around the country, the issue has proved to be a sure winner for the conservative base, with bills popping up in more than a dozen state legislatures to force future presidential candidates to prove their citizenship. Those legislatures, though, have been much more reluctant to turn this issue into concrete law.
Birther bills have foundered or fallen dormant in at least five states and are still being debated in more than a half-dozen others. In Arizona, where both legislative chambers passed one such bill, Gov. Jan Brewer, a Republican, vetoed it this week, calling it “a bridge too far.”
But now, Oklahoma, a deeply conservative state, could be the first to put its doubts into law, through a bill that would require all candidates, from town council hopeful on up, to prove that they meet the legal requirements for office. Those requirements vary by office, but presidential aspirants would need to, among things, file certified proof that they were born in the United States. The bill does not specify what documents would need to be filed. A vote was expected by next week.