You've all probably heard about this already, but just in case.... Sarah Palin has declared that the question of President Obama's birth certificate is a "fair question" as she used the fact the people questioned the parentage of her son Trig as a reason why.
Palin goes birther: Obama birth certificate “fair question” and “public rightly is still making it an issue”From Media Matters:
Sarah Palin: Going Birther
From Think Progress:
One of the few legitimate grievances Sarah Palin had regarding the way she was treated during the 2008 presidential campaign centered on the ludicrous questions about her son Trig's birth. There was never any real reason to question whether she was, indeed, Trig's mother, and the few online media types who flogged the bogus story line certainly didn't do themselves any credit.
That said, you'd think Palin would be particularly sensitive and careful regarding questions of birth and parentage. Alas, no ...[snip]
If Palin does, indeed, have political ambitions, then she's doing everything she possibly can to scuttle them by embracing Birtherism. There's a reason that national-level elected Republicans don't (for the most part) wade into the Birther swamp -- because the issue is so radioactively crazy that it would be political suicide to do so. If news reports are to be believed, Lou Dobbs was dropped by CNN because he indulged his Birther curiosities. It was hardly the first crazy thing Dobbs did while at CNN, but it was that special kind of crazy that made CNN say "enough." In short, anyone who has the Birther stain is not going to be a success in the political mainstream.
But let's not lose sight of the fact that the only reason we're talking about this at all is because John McCain selected Sarah Palin to be the next vice president of the United States. Perhaps David Gregory can ask the Arizona senator his thoughts on Palin's Birther tendencies on this Sunday's Meet the Press.
Palin Sympathizes With Birthers But Hits Reporters For Pushing ‘Stupid Conspiracies’
Yesterday while appearing on the right-wing radio show of Rusty Humphries, former Alaska governor Sarah Palin expressed her allegiance with the birther movement. She asserted that it was a “fair question” to ask whether President Obama was born in the U.S. “I think the public rightfully is still making it an issue,” she said. “I don’t have a problem with that."
From the LA Times:
Sarah Palin's 'birther' flirtation: least surprising news todayFrom the Washington Monthly's Steve Benen:
I have to ask: Is the fact that Palin uttered something so nutty really surprising? At this point, our ability to feel taken aback by anything Palin does (barring some kind of Arianna Huffington-esque political conversion) is pretty worn out. She could come out and say the Earth is 10,000 years old, that gays can be "cured," that the president pals around with terrorists or that some parts of the country are more "pro-America" than others (correction: the last two she actually said). We'd roll our eyes and perhaps indulge in the guilty pleasure that comes with feeling a little less small-minded those who seek power. But surprised?
From Alex Koppleman at Salon.com:
That last point about the bizarre notion that Palin's son is not her son was especially odd. The former half-term governor seems to think questions about Trig's birth certificate are a "weird conspiracy theory freaky thing" -- she does have a way with words -- but instead of arguing that all of the nonsense be taken off the table for everyone, Palin wants to see "the same type of thinking" applied to the president.
Ideally, this is the kind of inanity that would lead polite company to realize Sarah Palin isn't the brightest bulb on the Christmas tree, and her credibility as a national figure would be permanently ruined. But this relates back to what we talked about earlier this week: among conservative Republicans, the nonsensical fringe has been mainstreamed. The line between GOP adults and GOP nutjobs has been blurred, if not erased altogether. (It's more than likely the Republican base will be even more impressed with Palin now.)
Then, Palin tried to walkback her latest 'stepped in it' on her Facebook page:
Palin is, of course, wrong to say that the public is still "rightfully" bringing up the issue -- it's been answered again and again at this point, and there's no doubt that Obama was born in Hawaii. But she is right about a couple of things: For one, whoever the Republican nominee is in 2012, they won't "have to bother to make it an issue." It already will be, if not one discussed explicitly by the campaign and its surrogates, because so many Republicans already have doubts about the president's birthplace. The fact that Palin and other mainstream figures, like Lou Dobbs and Tom DeLay, have indulged the Birthers doesn't help matters.
Palin's also right to draw a parallel between the conspiracy theories that surround Obama's birth and the one about her son. The two are equally nutty. You'd hope, however, that going through that experience would teach her that it's an awful thing to happen to anyone, regardless of political party. Instead, her attitude seems to be that the two wrongs somehow make a right.
Voters have every right to ask candidates for information if they so choose. I’ve pointed out that it was seemingly fair game during the 2008 election for many on the left to badger my doctor and lawyer for proof that Trig is in fact my child. Conspiracy-minded reporters and voters had a right to ask... which they have repeatedly. But at no point – not during the campaign, and not during recent interviews – have I asked the president to produce his birth certificate or suggested that he was not born in the United States.