No one has asked to see Mitt Romney’s birth certificate.
Or Barack Obama’s Swiss bank account.
Mitt Romney has so much difficulty telling the truth that his occasional ventures into veracity deserve celebration. His comment that no one had ever asked to see his birth certificate was slimy, slippery, and racially charged, and it put him in league with Donald Trump and Sheriff Joe Arpaio – two elements of the rather exclusive set of Romney’s moral inferiors – but at least it wasn’t flat-out false.
On the other hand, no one has ever asked to see Barack Obama’s Swiss bank account.
Author: Mark Kleiman
Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out.
Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken)
When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist
Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993)
Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989)
View all posts by Mark Kleiman
14 thoughts on “Credit where due”
I’m sure Mitt holds a passport, so I think his statement was literally false.
Unless he was an illegal emigrant to Paris during ‘Nam.
I don’t recall needing my birth cirtificate to get a passport. I remember I got an application at the post office, enclosed a check, a photo and mailed it in. It’s been many years so I could be mistaken. Those were more innocent times.
Then you recall incorrectly. Only people with existing passports can renew by mail, and then only if they can produce the passport and it hasn’t expired more than a couple of years ago. To get one’s first passport, a native-born US citizen must appear before a passport official with a birth certificate, two passport-sized photos, a completed application form, and a check for the passport fee.
This ought to get you a job offer from the Obama campaign.
Don’t do it, Mark. You’re better off (and better) unfettered. Loved your voice from on high.
I’m stealing this.
I have already stolen it.
RE Romney, and consistency, he has now done yet another flip (or is it flop) on health care. His singular accomplishment in public life, which he talked up in 2008 and ran away from in the spring, and now he’s talking it up again. He’s lying about it, of course (I’ve filed taxes in Massachusetts, and so can assure you that to avoid tax penalties you must provide proof of insurance), and who knows how long it will last. But for now, Romney is in favor of Obamacare again. At least in Massachusetts.
… he has now done yet another flip (or is it flop) …
This phrase works pretty well:
It’s not even true that no journalist has asked to see Romney’s birth certificate in the course of a presidential campaign. (I believe that Romney’s birth certificate was eventually produced, showing that his middle name is indeed “Mitt.”)
Romney’s occasional slips into something approaching verisimilitude are no longer relevant — he’s not likely to win any game of tit for tat with Obama since, rather minimally, no one has asked to see Obama’s tax returns or anything else of consequence either and for obvious reasons — and Romney’s racist dog whistles won’t do much that hasn’t been done already either.
Romney has three games and three games only and the Republicans have already done nearly everything they can to win them: (1) damage the American economy, (2) suppress the democratic vote and (3) use the enormous and increasingly untraceable financial war chest to swamp the Democrats in every state and district possible.
What is going to happen is already pretty much baked into the cake: The sound and fury from here do indeed signify nothing.
I think what Mitt meant was, “Due to white privilege, no one has looked at my face and questioned whether I was qualified for anything: car loan, mortgage, job opening, president, etc. I am so glad I went through life without people prejudging me on the basis of my skin color. I built this!”
No, no, it’s that I just give too much, if I released my tax returns people would think I was bragging…
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