Political Animal


August 17, 2011 9:30 AM GOP Birthers haven’t completely gone away

By Steve Benen

With the release of President Obama’s long-form birth certificate several months ago, the far-right’s “birther” madness has, thankfully, disappeared almost entirely.

But as Republican Rep. Tim Walberg of Michigan helped prove this week, some pathologies are needlessly tenacious.

Responding to two questioners who brought up the issue of Obama’s birth place, Walberg did not tell the questioners that the issue had been settled by Obama when he released his birth certificate in April.

“Regardless of whether the license that he showed is true or fake, I’ve not seen it other than what was portrayed in the news. The House is controlled by the majority party being the Republicans, the Senate by the Democrats, the attorney general by the Democrats. That’s the answer.”

Walberg added he would “like to have that question finally answered as much as anybody else.”

Remember, Tim Walberg is not some deranged man yelling on a street corner; he’s an elected member of Congress. Even with most Birthers slinking away months ago, here we have a federal lawmaker arguing in public that that reality may be fake and the bizarre conspiracy theory may be true, even if all of the evidence says otherwise.

This is, by the way, the same Tim Walberg who last year suggested impeaching the president if he didn’t produce a birth certificate, which, of course, he’d already done. Now he’s a member of Congress in good standing, despite apparently being stark raving mad.

If Americans are going to improve their tattered political system, they’re going to have to start electing more sane people to power public offices.

Correction: I’d originally identified Walberg as representing Minnesota, instead of Michigan. I’ve corrected the text.

Steve Benen is a contributing writer to the Washington Monthly, joining the publication in August, 2008 as chief blogger for the Washington Monthly blog, Political Animal.


Post a comment
  • Peter C on August 17, 2011 9:40 AM:

    Sadly, this moron is from Michigan and not Minnesota.

  • efgoldman on August 17, 2011 9:41 AM:

    Remember, Tim Walberg is not some deranged man yelling on a street corner; hes an elected member of Congress.
    Looks one and the same to me.

    captcha insenty Kazakov, (including the comma)
    I *KNOW* there are better systems out there.

  • RepublicanPointOfView on August 17, 2011 9:41 AM:

    The comments of the Honorable Representative Walberg show that he is not a member in good standing, he is a member in great standing!

    We could finally get this issue resolved and the truth about the Kenyan citizenship of the socialist unAmerican traitor who is occupying our WHITE House if Obama would do the honorable thing of firing Holder and appointing John Ashcroft as Attorney General.

  • charlie on August 17, 2011 9:42 AM:

    Stevo: again, this assumes that we will have some sane people actually voting.................

  • sick-n-effn-tired. on August 17, 2011 9:46 AM:

    The resident problem being... there is no down side to this lunacy. Wherein in years gone by people would have pointed their fingers at him and laughed and he would have been vilified by the press, now he is invited on Faux Nooze as a "serious person"

    Watching this country decline day by day.

  • c u n d gulag on August 17, 2011 9:46 AM:

    I can feel it in the air:

    The "N-word's" coming!!!

    And the person who says it, will be re-elected forever if he or she is from a red district. Maybe move up from the House to the Senate, or the Gov's mansion back home.

  • RepublicanPointOfView on August 17, 2011 9:46 AM:

    For all of you commenters who may say that I am insane for strongly supporting our elected republican officials who you say are not sane; I will sue you and my psychiatrist if I find out that he is the one who told you!

  • Texas Aggie on August 17, 2011 9:46 AM:

    Thank you, Peter. I was worried that Minnesota had even more idiots than it appeared. I have family there and I worry for their welfare. Michigan, however, can go down the toilet. They elected a jerk for governor, and now he's decided that he can dismiss elected representatives at will and replace them with his buddies, at tax payer expense, of course.

  • bleh on August 17, 2011 9:48 AM:

    To paraphrase Texas State Senator Carl Parker (yes, it was he), if you took all the paranoid right-wing half-wits out of the Congress, it wouldn't be a representative body any more.

  • Gov't Mule on August 17, 2011 9:57 AM:

    I'm willing to bet that the most militant Birthers don't claim that Slick Willard Romney is not a "Natural born Citizen." I do believe his father, George, was born in Mexico, thereby � according to militant birthers � is not eligible to be POTUS. But like everything else in politics, IOKIYAR.

  • TCinLA on August 17, 2011 9:57 AM:

    God, whatever happened to Minnesota? You know, the place full of solid, serious people, the ones Garrison Keillor writes about, the ones who created the DFL, sent guys like Hubert Humphrey who were willing to take on the Southern traitors back in 1948, folks like Paul Wellstone...

    Now it's this bozo, that crazy dumbbitch Bachmann, that idiot Pawlenty... where did these morons come from up there?

  • TCinLA on August 17, 2011 9:59 AM:

    Thanks for the note above that said bozo is not from Minnesota, but I still want to know about the rest of the idiots there who vote for the morons.

  • biggerbox on August 17, 2011 10:06 AM:

    You dropped a words in a sentence up there. It should be "Remember, Tim Walberg is not just some deranged man yelling on a street corner; he's also an elected member of Congress.

  • MattF on August 17, 2011 10:10 AM:



    In any event, Walberg will keep doing what he does as long as it continues to piss off libruls. And his constituents will love it. See: Dissonance, Cognitive.

  • Anonymous on August 17, 2011 10:24 AM:

    Walberg's office in Michigan did see a little action yesterday (via NPR)...nothing says courage like hiding in your office (or Cancun, or wherever he happened to be) and replying via press release:

    About two dozen union members demonstrated outside the Jackson office of Republican congressman Tim Walberg. The protest was as much about the 2012 election as it was about the budget fight in Washington.

    Some passing motorists honked their horns, showing solidarity with protesters outside Congressman Tim Walberg's office. The protesters, like teacher's assistant Glenda Wells, say Walberg has sided too often with special business interests at the expense of working men and women.

    "He says he's for the people - then he needs to prove it."

    Walberg's office released a statement saying the president and Senate Democrats are the ones standing in the way of economic progress and job creation.

  • JVMich on August 17, 2011 1:37 PM:

    You should excuse Congressman Walberg for his mental blank-out type answer. He is dependent on bullet point answers from group-think paid propagandists from organizations like ALEC or The Mackinac Center. Under pressure, he simply forgot the proper response to parrot. I'm sure that his office will look at their official approved copy of bullet point responses and follow up by issuing some cliche statement from his corporation funded puppet masters.