Yes, is is happening. Arizona’s top official who can determine who can go on the ballot in November, Secretary of State Ken Bennett, is seriously suggesting that he might keep President Barack Obama off Arizona’s November ballot until he provides the state with a birth certificate to its liking.

Two things that need to be said about this, if it is indeed a serious threat and not one more Twilight Zone verbal moment from someone who is clearly a partisan:

1. I can’t believe this kind of action in trying to defeat Barack Obama at all costs and using any pretext (and, yes, there are always the denials that this is not what it is really about) would do anything but get a ton of media coverage and gravely hurt Mitt Romney with independent voters. It might hugely energize the Democratic Party base.

2. Any President who got into office because they benefited from something like this would have an authentic legitimacy problem. There would be huge numbers of Americans who would feel an election was stolen.

If Republicans take on Obama on his policies, and dispute his touted successes and highlight his failures with them, and if they ask voters whether people are willing to believe any more of Obama’s promises, they have a chance to win the White House.

If they decide they want to parrot polarizing conservative talk show hosts, or make a big deal out of political grassy knolls, then I suspect with many independents, moderates and exiled GOP RINOs, they will be on the losing end of the lesser of two evils.

UPDATE: Read more here.

JOE GANDELMAN, Editor-In-Chief
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Copyright 2012 The Moderate Voice
  • dduck

    Time for top elected officials, like McCain and others to speak up against this nonsense.

  • rudi

    But both sides do this. The California Sweet Leaf Party called W mean things…

  • slamfu

    Wow. Something just snapped in my brain reading this. Don’t get me started on equivalency. I don’t have time now but when I do a big rant is coming later.

  • The_Ohioan

    This was tried in Georgia last year.

    If you look at the AZ Scty. of State website, it has 23 candidates for Republican Party, 6 for Green Party, and none for Democratic Party.

    Passing strange.

  • rudi

    On a serious note, other than DD, where are the Wingnuts and their outrage over this?

  • dduck

    rudi, I am far more moderate than you are, and far from a wingnut.

  • slamfu

    I just can’t take it anymore. If I hear one more idiotic thing done by republicans I think my brain is going to melt. This is such a simple issue and it STILL has legs with a shocking number of people. Republicans are idiots. Every day I hear something I can’t believe coming from their camp. I don’t even know where to begin. And no matter how stupid it is, even if Mitt Romney wants to say he wants credit for a bailout he was well documented as opposing, there is talk of “well the liberals do it to.” No they don’t. Not to the same extent, not with the same consistency, not with anywhere near the reach, and absolutely with no where near the number of idiots who eat it up like candy.

    Let’s take one of my favorites examples. Rush Limbaugh calling Fluke a slut. What is the response from the right? Maher called Palin a cunt, same thing right? No, not even close. While it was very rude and crass, at least what Maher did was technically an informed opinion. He didn’t make anything up, he didn’t tell us that Sarah Palin likes to beat puppies steal toys from children. He knows who Palin is and he just doesn’t like her. Rush on the other hand knew absolutely nothing about Fluke, not even what her testimony was about. He didn’t just call her a slut. He made up an entire backstory on this woman he has never met, filled with all the negative misogynist stereotypes he could come up with, and held her up as an example of liberal women for 3 days on his show.

    Santorum was a serious candidate for how long? The man came within a hair’s breadth of referring to Obama as a nigger TV and no one missed a beat. He is openly hateful of gay people and wants to toss out separation of church and state. He gives out absurd made up stats on healthcare in the Netherlands that any sane person would pause for a bit before repeating to a friend, much less on camera. But that’s ok, you still pass muster for another few weeks until you do something REALLY stupid. If I get started on every other candidate, and I could, this will be a mini novel so I won’t, as much as I would love to dig in on the insanity that was Herman Cain’s time as frontrunner.

    Take your pick on any topic and watch the GOP take a proud stance on the side of ignorance. Stem cell research? No thank you, I think it has something to with abortion. College? That’s for stuck up snobs. What? Yea I did go to Harvard, was hoping you missed that one. Oil from algae? Yea right if you believe that I have a bridge to sell you. Oil and coal 4 life yo! Sex ed, not in my school. Abstinence only was good enough for my mom who had to drop out of school at 17 to have me, it’s good enough for my kids. Drug war just needs more guns and stiffer sentences, another 30 years and we’ll have this problem licked. Let’s not tax the rich, it will destroy jobs and punish the job creators. Even though that’s basically how we ran things for the 30 years after WWII and everything went fine. Today’s conservatives don’t understand words like socialism. I haven’t heard one of them use it correctly in my adult life but they sure like throwing it around. They actually think FOX news is fair and balanced even though it is run by a guy who has spent his entire professional life promoting the Republican agenda. Every scientist in the world thinks global warming is a real thing and they decide to listen to the studies done by Exxon.

    And now we have this. A republican actually in charge of a state’s ballot is towing the line for BIRTHERS for god’s sake. Seriously, all you have to do to be taken seriously in today’s GOP is make up stuff that sounds like it MIGHT be true. Don’t worry, the rubes who vote for us today won’t even take the time to check for 10 seconds on Google. We can say and do whatever we want, and it will be forgotten because it actually appears that the public expects utter stupidity, lack of research, and even blatantly ignoring plain evidence from us, the GOP. How can they even be taken seriously at this point by thinking adults? How?

  • A little light reading that may inspire a hobby if you live in Arizona:

  • dduck

    Feel better, Slam. Now take a nap.

  • hyperflow

    John Nash (a beautiful mind)

    “Gradually I began to intellectually reject some of the delusionally influenced lines of thinking which had been characteristic of my orientation. This began, most recognizably, with the rejection of politically-oriented thinking as essentially a hopeless waste of intellectual effort”,_Jr.

  • dduck

    Cute, Hyper………….

  • zephyr

    I just don’t have the patience for all the republican idiocy anymore. Insanity and sociopathy seems to have become a religion for them anymore. (If all conservatives were as sensible as dd this wouldn’t be a problem.)

  • dduck

    Z, you guys do the same things. I am not a conservative. We are not all the same. Just because we are Reps, does not mean we agree on everything. I wouldn’t say all Dems are liberals, would you/

  • Jim Satterfield

    First, dduck, show us where some idiocy of this magnitude has been carried on for years by multiple office holders and party officials of the Democratic Party. Seriously. I don’t care if Joe thinks that the phrase is meaningless, but this is most definitely a case of false equivalence. The basic truth is that enough of the Republican political base is like this that it has turned a significant number of office holders into either believers in similar idiocies or made them more than willing to pander to it.

  • dduck

    Alas, Jim, I can’t point to idiocy of this magnitude carried on for years. Except perhaps the Dems lack of guts taking on the NRA; that’s been years. Perhaps emulating the Reps, by overspending and encouraging everyone to buy a house via FNMA/FDMC, that could ill afford it.

    P.S. I don’t know what phrase Joe said that you thought was meaningless.

  • zephyr

    Dd, the phrase, “false equivalence” isn’t one Joe G. cares for (to put it mildly I think). That said, it’s based on the realization by many (this includes some excellent nonpartisan writing by Norman Ornstein and Thomas Mann) that the “both sides do it” mantra is pretty useless, inaccurate and ignores matters of degree to a rather appalling extent. Interestingly, their research isn’t being picked up much by our current (and sad) incarnation of the fourth estate.

  • dduck

    Z, thanks for the clarification.
    OK, lets start by saying the Reps out bad ___ (you fill in) x as much as the Dems. Now what?
    We do a morning talk show and state that the number is an estimate, a fact, an accusation, a misnomer or a scientifically, mathematical fact, equivalent to pi, but rounded.
    So, you are on the panel, what say you? Take out all the Reps, and shoot them, put a letter R on them, call them names, make everyone only vote for Dems, what? Just sayin.

  • zephyr

    Dd, for me your proposed solution would lead to the loss of a couple lifelong friends, a great brother-in-law, and a few blood relatives… so not an option. I would like to see the republican party get some serious psychiatric counseling however.

  • Jim Satterfield

    I just want some honesty on this matter and others that are similar to it. The current makeup of the Republican Party has a very large segment that buys into conspiracy theories, lies and rejection of science as part of their belief system. While the Democrats have some like that it’s nothing like what you see in the Republican Party. Just admit that basic truth. Denying it is what irritates me.

  • ShannonLeee

    I don’t know what you are talking about JS. Doesn’t everyone believe that Adam and Eve road on the backs of dinosaurs?

    Stay classy Arizona

  • dduck

    JS, Lyin and Denyin, a great group. We are making progress, it is now a “LARGE segment that buys into conspiracy theories, lies and rejection of science as part of their belief system.” “While the Democrats have SOME” probably just a hand full, eh JS.

    Just trying to clarify, so you want honesty and the stop to denying.
    You want “truth”, you can’t handle the truth; this is politics.

    However, I will state a mathematical certainty (OK, if a Rep believes in mathematics?), the Reps are 10X as bad as the Dems, is that good enough. Can I not be sent to “get some serious psychiatric counseling”, after all you guys would have to pay for it.

  • Jim Satterfield

    Well, it’s not like I’m making it up, dd. Survey says…

  • Rcoutme

    From JS’s link: (about President Obama) these are the total (not broken down by R/D/I…R’s are much higher)

    38 percent say he wants to take away Americans’ right to own guns.
    32 percent say he is a Muslim.
    29 percent think he wants to turn over the sovereignty of the United States to a one world government.
    29 percent think he has done many things that are unconstitutional.
    27 percent say he resents America’s heritage.
    27 percent say he does what Wall Street and the bankers tell him to do.
    25 percent say he was not born in the United States and so is not eligible to be president.
    25 percent say he is a domestic enemy that the U.S. Constitutions speaks of.
    23 percent say he is a racist.
    23 percent say he is anti-American.
    23 percent say he wants to use an economic collapse or terrorist attack as an excuse to take dictatorial powers.
    20 percent say he is doing many of the things that Hitler did.