Lefties Are Hyping ‘Birthers’

As usual, the kookiest conspiracy theories come from the left.

James Kirchick, an assistant editor at the liberal magazine, The New Republic, writes in the New York Daily News

You could be forgiven for thinking that a serious campaign is afoot – aided and abetted by the national Republican Party – to question Barack Obama‘s citizenship. Over the past two weeks, an inordinate amount of news coverage has been afforded to “birthers,” conspiracy theorists who claim that the President was not born in Hawaii, as his birth records indicate, but in Kenya.

It is not Obama’s right-wing opponents, however, who are devoting the most attention to this obscure, Internet-driven “movement,” […] Rather, it’s liberals, bent on portraying their conservative opponents as extremists – and changing the subject to help a President under increasing scrutiny for the substance of his policies – who are driving this story.

Making the rounds in the propagation of this meme is a deceptively edited video produced by far-left Web site FireDogLake, in which an interviewer chases Republican congressmen around the Capitol asking if they believe Obama is a natural-born citizen. Some respond in the affirmative while others ignore the questioner, and it is this latter handful that liberals have proffered as evidence that the GOP is “fearful” of disparaging its “birther base.”

But the refusal of Republican congressmen to answer questions from a Michael Moore wanna-be is understandable; public figures are frequently accosted on the street by crazy people and amateur propagandists wielding cameras. […]

Don’t tell that to the birther-obsessed left. “The video makes clear that the Republican Party is captive to their conspiracy theory-mongering base all the way up to the top,” wrote left-wing blogger Jane Hamsher. It shows no such thing of course, and Hamsher’s wildly irresponsible claim about “conspiracy theory-mongering” rising to the pinnacles of GOP power was flatly contradicted by House Minority Leader John Boehner of Ohio, who said “No” when asked by a reporter if he had any questions about the circumstances of Obama’s birth. […]

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