Dissecting Obama's School Record

Who are you, Barack?

I've found myself in the rather unlikely role of defending Democratic presidential contender Barack Obama during the past few days.

I've done so not out of any sense of loyalty to Obama -- as anyone familiar with my blog or my work at Pajamas Media or the New York Post will attest -- but out of pure curiosity about the many rumors swirling around the man who would be president.

One of the rumors I was able to personally debunk was that Obama never registered for the Selective Service, which would theoretically make him ineligible for executive branch jobs, including the presidency. As I've confirmed his registration and have even published his registration number via direct communications with the Selective Service, that particular rumor should be considered quashed for any reasonable person. Of course, "reason" and "politics" are all too often strangers, and so the comments thread of that article was quickly inundated with those enthusiastic people I'll dub members of the Obama Truth Movement (hereafter, OTM).

The OTM quickly assailed my belief that Obama's "proven birth in Hawaii" and his U.S. citizenship is legitimate, and many hold the belief that a copy of Obama's certificate of live birth (COLB) is a fake. Sadly, this is a belief unlikely to ever be resolved to the satisfaction of the OTM, as the Obama campaign has already posted a copy of the COLB on the campaign website and is unlikely to address it again.

Pajamas Media attempted to have the Hawaiian Department of Health (DOH) verify that the information publicly released in the COLB on the Obama site was accurate, making the argument that a public display of the document was in essence "disclosed by a public figure in a public venue for examination." Janice Okubo, director of communications for the DOH, responded in an email message this morning:

Our attorney general advised us that Hawaii state law prohibits the Dept. of Health from verifying information contained in a vital record for anyone without a tangible interest. If Sen. Obama or his official representative requests a public verification that can be legally provided. Practically speaking, I believe that only the individual posting a document on a website can verify its authenticity.

The Hawaiian government can only release Obama's birth records upon Obama's request, and Obama won't. Though they have twice been contacted by Pajamas Media regarding these allegations over the past month -- and no doubt by other journalists and bloggers -- the campaign has thus far refused to release the DOH from its obligation. This in no way means the document is inauthentic. It simply means that if Obama's enemies are barking up the wrong proverbial tree, his campaign will not dissuade them from wasting time and resources.