Indiana News

Indiana Weighs Birther Resolution

Senate panel puts off action on requiring presidential hopefuls to prove citizenship

4/19/2011

A day after Arizona's governor vetoed a bill requiring presidential candidates to present birth certificates, Indiana is wading into the debate.

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Senator Mike Delph (R-Carmel) is seeking a summer study committee review of whether Indiana should require presidential candidates to prove they meet the constitutional requirements of age, residency and citizenship.

A bill Delph introduced to require exactly that never got a hearing.

The bill differs from the Arizona legislation vetoed by Republican Gov. Jan Brewer, which would have required the "long form" birth certificate retained in some states' official records, rather than the short-form certificate of live birth.

Real estate mogul and potential G-O-P presidential candidate Donald Trump has been the latest "birther" to falsely claim President Obama was not born in Hawaii. Obama has released his short-form certificate.

Delph doesn't offer an opinion on Obama's citizenship. But he argues it's unhealthy to have questions surrounding candidates' eligibility, and that there's no harm in verifying their age and birthplace.

Former state Democratic chairman Kip Tew, who chaired Obama's Indiana campaign in 2008, calls the resolution an attempt to delegitimize Obama and a waste of time.

The Senate Appointments and Claims Committee put off possible action on the study committee request because there wasn't a quorum. Fort Wayne Republican Tom Wyss and all three committee Democrats were absent.

Sen. Sue Landske (R-Cedar Lake) co-sponsored the resolution.

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