He didn’t put it that way, of course. But whether he realized it or not, that’s what the GOP frontrunner and “Apprentice” host asserted in an interview the other day.
In response to questions from ABC’s George Stephanopoulos, Donald Trump offered this explanation for why he’s not convinced Barack Obama was born in the United States (emphasis mine):
There’s a real question about the birth certificate. There’s a real question about the – his own – his own citizenship. … He doesn’t have a birth certificate or he hasn’t provided [one]. He’s given a certificate of live birth. It’s a much different instrument.
A Nesi’s Notes reader – who expects one of his two children will occupy the White House someday – wrote in to point out that by Trump’s reckoning, nobody born in Rhode Island can prove their eligibility for the presidency: the Rhode Island Department of Health gives everyone here a “certificate of live birth,” too.
Spokeswoman Annemarie Beardsworth confirmed that fact, and sent along an example:
Luckily for future commanders-in-chief from Woonsocket to Westerly, Stephanopoulos reports Trump is wrong – the U.S. State Department recognizes “certificates of live birth” as proof of citizenship.