Arizona Election Official Might Leave Obama Off Ballot
Secretary of State Ken Bennett, a Republican who is considering a run for governor to succeed Gov. Jan Brewer (R) in 2014, told conservative radio host Mike Broomhead that he is "not a birther."
"I believe that the president was born in Hawaii — or at least, I hope he was," Bennett said in an interview with KFYI. "My responsibility as secretary of state is to make sure that the ballots in Arizona are correct and that those people whose names are on the ballot have met the qualifications of the office they are seeking."
Last April, Obama released the long form of his birth certificate showing that he was born in Hawaii, but some doubts remain. Maricopa County (Ariz.) Sheriff Joe Arpaio spent six months investigating the President’s birth certificate, alleging it was forged.
Bennett said efforts to reach officials in Hawaii for verification of Obama’s birth certificate have not produced a response other than requests for proof of Arizona laws that show he has authority to seek the information, according to ABC15 Arizona.
“For some reason, for eight weeks, they haven’t been willing to say ‘yes,’” Bennett said. “They could say ‘yes’ tomorrow and the whole thing goes away.”
Some political analysts predict that Arizona could be a competitive battleground state in the general election, according to USA Today. Tension has built between state officials and the Obama administration over issues such as illegal immigration.
Obama’s Justice Department sued the Maricopa County Sheriff’s office earlier this month, alleging that Arpaio had led the practice of racial profiling against Latinos. Arpaio has dismissed the lawsuit as a political stunt to court Latino voters.