The issue of President Barack Obama’s citizenship has been settled, and the decision of Kansas officials to try to keep it alive was both a waste of time and an embarrassment to the state.
Last week, the State Objections Board heard several ballot challenges, including one from a Manhattan resident who claimed Obama was not eligible to be president because his father was from Kenya and not an American citizen. He based his claim that both of Obama’s parents had to be citizens in order for Obama to be a citizen on U.S. Supreme Court cases, some of them more than 100 years old.
The members of the state board are Secretary of State Kris Kobach, Attorney General Derek Schmidt and Lt. Gov. Jeff Colyer. The two attorneys on the board — Kobach and Schmidt — dismissed the legal basis for the claim saying the Manhattan resident was “trying to read too much into” the court cases.
At that point, it would have been logical to simply deny the objection and move on. Instead, the board decided to delay its decision until today while asking for additional documentation certifying Obama’s birth certificate. They indicated they wanted the state to have its own certified documents from the state of Hawaii. This is in spite of the fact that Obama already has made such a document public, and that the U.S. Supreme Court has refused to even hear an appeal challenging the president’s U.S. citizenship.
On Friday, the Manhattan man dropped his objection to Obama being on the state’s November ballot. Without the objection, Kobach said, there was no possibility the board would take Obama’s name off the ballot, but the board still would meet today to close the case and add whatever additional information is available to the record.
Hopefully, that is the end of this matter and state officials now can get on to more important business. Belaboring this issue only makes the state and some of its top elected officials look silly.