Hamilton, Madison, and Jay

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Location: Mesa, Arizona, United States

Who are we? We're a married couple who has a passion for politics and current events. That's what this site is about. If you read us, you know what we stand for.

Monday, December 8, 2008

The zealots are damaging us and they need to knock it off

I have been involved in a long-running debate for several weeks with a few of my fellow chartters over the Obama birth certificate isue. They were all hot to trot when last Friday came around because the US Supreme Court was going to decide whether or not to take one of 18 lawsuits filed across the country. The one in question was the suit filed against the New Jersey secretary of state, claiming he wasn't a citizen. The Supreme Court didn't grant Donofrio's suit certiorari; the high court isn't going to take this up.

Now some of these chatters are friends of mine, but they're so ticked that Obama won the election, they're willing to delve into the same derangement pool that the Left did over Bush and Florida in 2000. David Horowitz has a timely, must-read column in today's NRO. He warns that this doesn't help us at all if we go down the same road the Left did:

The continuing efforts of a fringe group of conservatives to deny Obama his victory and to lay the basis for the claim that he is not a legitimate president is embarrassing and destructive. The fact that these efforts are being led by Alan Keyes, a demagogue who lost a Senate election to the then-unknown Obama by 42 points, should be a warning in itself.

This tempest over whether Obama, the child of an American citizen, was born on American soil is tantamount to the Democrats’ seditious claim that Bush “stole” the election in Florida and hence was not the legitimate president.

This delusion helped to create the Democrats’ Bush derangement syndrome and encouraged Democratic leaders to lie about the origins of the Iraq war, and regard it as illegitimate as Bush himself. It became “Bush’s War” rather than an American War — with destructive consequences for our troops and our cause.

The birth-certificate zealots are essentially arguing that 64 million voters should be disenfranchised because of a contested technicality as to whether Obama was born on U.S. soil. (McCain narrowly escaped the problem by being born in the Panama Canal zone, which is no longer American.)

What difference does it make to the future of this country whether Obama was born on U.S. soil? Advocates of this destructive campaign will argue that the constitutional principle regarding the qualifications for president trumps all others. But how viable will our Constitution be if five Supreme Court justices should decide to void 64 million ballots?

Conservatives are supposed to respect the organic nature of human societies. Ours has been riven by profound disagreements that have been deepening over many years. We are divided not only about political facts and social values, but also about what the Constitution itself means. The crusaders on this issue choose to ignore these problems and are proposing to deny the will of 64 million voters by appealing to five Supreme Court Justices (since no one is delusional enough to think that the four liberal justices are going to take the presidency away from Obama). What kind of conservatism is this?

It is not conservatism; it is sore loserism and quite radical in its intent. Respect for election results is one of the most durable bulwarks of our unity as a nation. Conservatives need to accept the fact that we lost the election, and get over it; and get on with the important business of reviving our country’s economy and defending its citizens, and — by the way — its Constitution.

He's right. See, what the chatters don't get is that if this were a legitimate issue, then why wasn't it raised during the primaries? Raising it now only seems to reinforce the view that our side has some pretty petulant people that just can't get it through their thick skulls that we lost. Yes. WE LOST. Obama won, and we're going to have to endure four years of this yo-yo in office. To act like these zealots is poisonous to our efforts to fix what's broken in our own party, and come back in 2010 and 2012.

Don't get me wrong. These are friends of mine, and I'm sure we all have friends like this. But if they're going to continue to be petty for the next four years -- saying things like "He'll never be my president." -- then they're going to en up hurting the party more than helping it. They'll become a part of the nutroots fringe on our side of the aisle. (And yes, he is the president of the United States whether you like it or not.)

The way to get rid of him is to fight him tooth and nail on any and every radical piece of his agenda he tries to get passed, and return in 2012 with a solid, viable candidate. We can put 2012 on the back burner right now because the midterms are more important. But, if this sort of crap continues to go on, it could greatly hurt our efforts in the midterms, and condemn us to an overwhelming Democrat majority in the House, and a sixty seat, filibuster-proof majority of Democrats in the Senate. And no Republican or conservative we're aware of wants to see that at all. So it's time for those zealots to drop this meme before they inflict damage to what we're trying to fix.

Publius II

ADDENDUM: I cited the post about the Supreme Court refusing to grant cert to Donofrio above, and I add this little tidbit from that post. Robert Barnes at the WaPo's "The Trail" blog tries to spin the reaction to the case and fails miserably:

The Supreme Court this morning unceremoniously declined to hear an emergency appeal from a man who claimed President-elect Barack Obama is not qualified for the presidency because he is not a "natural-born" citizen.

The court without comment declined to hear "Donofrio v. Wells," a suit that had attempted to keep Obama off the New Jersey ballot. Leo Donofrio of East Brunswick had claimed Obama had dual nationality at birth, because of his Kansas-born mother and his Kenyan-born father, who was a British subject at the time.

Just to be nonpartisan about it, Donofrio also contended that Republican Sen. John McCain (Ariz.) and Socialist Workers candidate Roger Calero also were not natural-born citizens and should have been kept off the ballot.

The case had little chance at the high court, but became the subject of a tremendous amount of speculation and debate on ideological political blogs.

Right-wing blogs were outraged when Justice David H. Souter denied Donofrio's petition for an injunction, and left-wing blogs smelled trouble when Justice Clarence Thomas referred the matter to the full court for consideration.

Would Mr. Barnes care to list those right-wing blogs that were "outraged?" Let's go over the biggies.

Hugh Hewitt has consistently argued against the zealots who try to call into his show, and never once showed outrage on his site.

Charles Johnson at Little Green Footballs has denied to cover the issue because he knew it was a farce.

Glenn Reynolds, AKA Instapundit, hasn't entertained the case for a second on his site.

The guys at PowerLine haven't touched the issue. Neither has Michelle Malkin. And over at Hot Air, when it is covered, the title of the post is always snarky; not giving the case much credence to begin with. (In fact, back in October, Captain Ed put up a post arguing against these ridiculous suits, including Phil Berg's, and he tossed cold water on Berg's credibility by pointing out that the guy is a 9-11 Truther.)

It seems to me that it's been our side of the 'Sphere, for the most part, that's been arguing against going down this road. It'd be nice if Mr. Barnes would retract that statement because it's obvious that the most high-traffic conservative blogs weren't "outraged" as he claims they were.

Publius II