Media Tries to Make Rick Perry a Birther

-By Warner Todd Huston

The left-wing media’s newest attack on Rick Perry is an attempt to make him into a “birther” — one of those folks that think Barack Obama is not a natural born American, a requirement to become our president. This new attack, though, is almost Clintonian in its careful avoidance of the truth.

The main attack started in a Parade interview featuring Texas Governor Rick Perry, but is being taken up as the cause célèbre by the left-wing, George Soros-funded attack dogs at Media Matters, Think Progress, and TPM as well as sites like Mediaite. But this “story is, as they say, all smoke and no fire.

In the interview Parade directly asked whether Perry thought Obama was born in the United States. Perry’s actual answers were, “I have no reason to think otherwise,” and “It doesn’t matter. He’s the President of the United States. He’s elected. It’s a distractive issue.”

Let me make this clear for the Old Media… Perry sees no issue with where Obama was born and takes the president’s word for his citizenship.

But even as Perry pretty clearly answered the question, the left-wingers are desperate to manufacture a faux controversy out of the interview.

Perry mentioned that he met Trump, noted that Trump still thinks that the birth certificate that the Obama campaign made public is a fake, and also noted that he’d like to get Trump’s endorsement for his presidential run. In no way did Perry say he thinks the birth certificate is a fake nor did he endorse Trump’s position — he merely reported what Trump told him.

Now Perry did demure from Parade’s question as to whether he’s seen Obama’s birth certificate — likely jokingly, I’ll add. “But you’ve seen his [birth certificate],” Parade asked. Perry replied, “I don’t know. Have I?”

There isn’t much to hang your hat on for a left-winger hoping to “get” Perry, nor for a birther hoping he’ll support their pet conspiracy theory. But it serves to form the only justification for their attack on Perry anyway.

The facts of this story are that Perry said he had no reason to doubt Obama’s birthplace and that it was a meaningless, “distractive issue,” regardless. Hard to make a controversy out of that!

But, oh are they trying.

Transcript of Relevant Section of the Interview:

Governor, do you believe that President Barack Obama was born in the United States?

I have no reason to think otherwise.

That’s not a definitive, “Yes, I believe he”—

Well, I don’t have a definitive answer, because he’s never seen my birth certificate.

But you’ve seen his.

I don’t know. Have I?

You don’t believe what’s been released?

I don’t know. I had dinner with Donald Trump the other night.


That came up.

And he said?

He doesn’t think it’s real.

And you said?

I don’t have any idea. It doesn’t matter. He’s the President of the United States. He’s elected. It’s a distractive issue.


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  • "You don’t believe what’s been released"?

    "I don’t know".

    What about that response is cryptic/up for interpretation? He does not know if the birth certificate which the President released is legitimate. Call it being a birther, or panderer, either way, I don't think there is any spin here.

    And regardless, I don't think the left wing media, or anyone else for the matter, needs to make Rick Perry unelectable, he'll do that for himself.

  • In reply to koolking83:

    Once again, you are looking at that one part and ignoring that he said it DOESN'T matter!

    I don;t know for a fact if that birth certif. is real, either. After all, the only thing I've seen is stuff on the Internet. But, again, it doesn't matter.

    Obama is president and no matter what was or is with his place of birth it just makes no difference. He IS prez. He says he a citizen, no one can prove otherwise.... so that is the end of it.

  • or "for *that matter" -that works a bit better.

  • WTH-I'm sorry but that's complete BS. It's an example of someone having their cake and eating it to. He attempts to delegitimize the President by casting doubt on the BC, but then dilutes his birther-esque position with the apparently laudible comment "It doesn’t matter. He’s the President of the United States. He’s elected. It’s a distractive issue". How about "I'm not going to discuss this issue-it's been addressed". That's probably how he'd answer if someone asked him about his racist rock.

  • In reply to koolking83:

    It isn't "having his cake" because he didn't say BOTH things. He did not say Obama wasn't a citizen and then tried to say "but it doesn't matter." So, your look at this is just spin meant to attack Perry.

  • *laudable also works a bit better. IDK why I feel compelled to correct myself. Liberal insecurities I guess.

  • He could have said, "Of course, President Obama was born in the United States."

    Instead he said, "I have no reason to think otherwise", "I don't have a definitive answer", and "It doesn't matter. "

    No spin necessary. If he's not a birther, then this is a brazen attempt to gain the support of those GOPhers who are.

    Imagine if someone asked me ten years ago, after the Florida election debacle, "Do you believe that George W. Bush won the 2000 election?" and my answer was "I don't have a definitive answer" or "I don’t have any idea. It doesn’t matter. He’s the President of the United States. It’s a distractive issue."

    I'm fairly confident, were I a public figure, that such an exchange would likely have appeared on Publius Forum under a headline like "Liberals Still Won't Admit Bush Won The 2000 Election."

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