Birtherism, and the questioning of Barack Obama’s allegiance to America did not begin with Donald Trump, fake news, conservative bloggers, or conspiracy theorists. WikiLeaks proved that it began in private communications between Hillary Clinton’s operatives when she ran against Obama in the 2008 Democratic primary.
A leaked Podesta email contains a “list of negative facts,” about their opponent, Barack Obama.
The “negative facts” were:
• “Obama was the only candidate at a recent event not to cover his heart during the national anthem and he has stopped wearing an American flag pin.”
• “Obama would personally negotiate with the leaders of terrorist nations like Iran and North Korea without preconditions.”
• “Obama’s father was a Muslim and Obama grew up among Muslims in the world’s most populous Islamic country.”
A month later, Clinton staffers circulated a photograph of Senator Obama dressed as a Somali elder. According to NBC News, Obama stated in a radio interview that “Everybody knows that whether it’s me or Senator Clinton or Bill Clinton that when you travel to other countries they ask you to try on traditional garb that you have been given as a gift. The notion that the Clinton campaign would be trying to circulate this as a negative on the same day that Senator Clinton was giving a speech about how we repair our relationships around the world is sad.” Obama’s campaign manager, David Plouffe, said that it was “the most shameful, offensive fear-mongering we’ve seen from either party in this election.”
The Clinton machine is responsible for framing the future President as a Muslim traitor who was not eligible for the Presidency. Questions regarding Obama’s birth certificate were first publicly raised by attorney and Clinton supporter, Phillip J. Berg, on August 28, 2008. The Washington Times reported that he filed a federal lawsuit to force Obama to prove his citizenship by producing his birth certificate.
Trump did not question Obama’s birth certificate until 2011. In typical Trump fashion, he continued to raise concerns on Twitter through 2014.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 18, 2011
Trump hammering the media and CNN’s ratings is not new.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 30, 2012
Trump urged Republicans to play offense.
Why do the Republicans keep apologizing on the so called “birther” issue? No more apologies–take the offensive!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 27, 2012
Trump tweeted a link to a video that showed Michelle Obama calling Kenya her husband’s “homeland.”
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 29, 2012
Trump rightfully took credit for being the person to force him to produce his birth certificate.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 23, 2014
Despite the inarguable truth that Clinton’s camp was behind the birther movement, she asserted publicly during the September 16, 2016, debate that Trump “led the birther movement to delegitimize our first black president. His campaign was founded on this outrageous lie.” She started the birther narrative, but the public has a short memory, so when it was convenient she blamed Trump. It deflected attention from the icy relationship between the Obamas and the Clintons and reinforced the ridiculous narrative that Trump is a racist.
Just prior to the September 16th debate, Trump declared that he believed Obama was born in the United States at the end of a press conference in which he first spoke about issues facing the country, such as the problems with healthcare through the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. However, Sheriff Joe Arpaio recently raised additional questions about the validity of the birth certificate that Obama provided.
Thanks to their attempts to rewrite history, confidence in the mainstream media is at an all-time low. The facts of how the story originated were less important to the media than than the end goal of a potential victory for Hillary Clinton. Alternative journalism is vital to preserving the integrity of facts for those with a desire to be truly well-informed.