Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer Vetoes Birther Bill
As I noted a few weeks ago talk show host Glenn Beck’s announcement that he was leaving Fox News was a sign that there were some limits in the talk show world. Now we have the case of Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer who has vetoed a high-profile birther bill — a sign that there are limits in the political world as well:
Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer vetoed a bill Monday that would have required presidential candidates to provide their birth certificates to appear on the ballot, and another that would have allowed guns to be carried on school grounds.
Brewer also vetoed a bill that would have directed the governor to set up an alliance with other states to regulate healthcare, in a challenge to the federal government.
HB 2177, the “birther” bill, “creates significant new problems while failing to do anything constructive for Arizona,” Brewer said.
The bill would have required presidential candidates to present their birth certificates or other birth records to be eligible to be on the ballot.
She did not mince words:
“As a former Secretary of State (sic), I do not support designating one person as the gatekeeper to the ballot for a candidate, which could lead to artibrary or politically-motivated decisions,” Brewer wrote in her veto message to House Speaker Kirk Adams.
“In addition, I never imagined being presented with a bill that could require candidates for President (sic) of the greatest and most powerful nation on earth to submit their “early baptismal or circumcision certificates” among other records to the Arizona Secretary of State. This is a bridge too far,” Brewer wrote.
What’s happening is that the bar is being increasingly lowered in American politics to what would once be considered — let’s use the word here — nutty behavior. If this bill had been signed Arizona, which has seen its businesses reeling from bad publicity over it’s anti-immigrant laws, would have yet more image problems. There is also a chance the law would have been challenged in court. And what if someone had not been baptised? (Not too many members of my synagogue were, you know). Or if they had not been circumsized?
Clearly Brewer considered the pressure she was under to sign it, balancing it off with a little thing called reality:
Last week, Brewer was tight-lipped on whether or not she planned to sign off on the bill. At the time, she called the measure “an interesting piece of legislation.”
Hawaii officials have certified Obama was born in that state, but so-called “birthers” have demanded more proof.
It was a smart call by Brewer and will also enhance her voice on other issues since she made it clear she’s not going to drink the full cup of Kool Aid — or of tea.