Liddy, who was convicted and jailed for his role in the Watergate break-in and who once advocated shooting ATF agents in the head since they wear bulletproof vests, claimed, “You’ve got a deposition, which is a sworn statement, from the step-grandmother, who says, ‘I was present and saw him born in Mombasa, Kenya.’”
Salon’s Alex Koppelman undercuts that urban legend/myth, again, which, he writes, Liddy got “a little garbled.”
Liddy got this particular myth a little garbled, but it’s a favorite of the Birthers’. I’ve covered it before, but it’s worth posting on now, I think, because cable news is just getting back to this story (there was some coverage late last year, when the Supreme Court declined to hear one of the Birther lawsuits) and hosts like Matthews don’t know all the crazy twists of the conspiracy theory well enough to knock them down.
What Liddy was referring to is actually an affidavit filed by a street preacher named Ron McRae, who conducted an interview with Sarah Obama, the second wife of President Obama’s grandfather, through a translator. (Sarah Obama is not the president’s biological grandmother, but he calls her “Granny Sarah.”)
In that interview, Sarah Obama does in fact say at one point that she was there for her grandson’s birth. But that was a mistake, a confusion in translation. As soon as a jubilant McRae began to press her for further details about her grandson being born in Kenya, the family realized the mistake and corrected him. And corrected him. And corrected him. (The audio is available for download here.)
No matter, though, because people who believe in a conspiracy theory simply hear what they want to hear. So some Birther sites have posted transcripts and YouTube clips that end abruptly with the mistranslation and don’t include the corrections.
Over the last few days and weeks, as the Birther movement has slowly crept up into the national conversation, many people have wondered, “Just what exactly would satisfy these freaks?” Well, here’s the answer that many have suspected, compliments of G. Gordon Liddy—nothing! Matthews serves Liddy a virtual buffet of evidence here that would seemingly cause any reasonable human being in possession of the capacity for abstract thought to concede this ridiculous argument, but it’s beyond obvious that even if Matthews had produced a video of Barack Obama getting leied by a Hawaiian nurse shortly after exiting his mother’s womb in 1961, G. Gordon Liddy was going to walk off of the Hardball set tonight holding fast to his imbecilic position, muttering indecipherable horseshit about “Kenya” and “illegal aliens” on his way out the door.
The exchange was, at times, excruciating to watch as a largely catatonic Liddy struggled to explain the slew of evidence that points to Obama’s U.S. citizenship. At one point, Matthews showed Liddy a certificate of live birth, which he noted was sufficient enough documentation to get a passport issued by the State Department.
“Let me see it, if you would. It’s interesting that it’s redacted,” Liddy said, pointing to a sequence of numbers in the upper right hand corner.
Matthews then produced a copy that wasn’t redacted. “What do you think now?” he asked.
When asked if Obama “should be picked up” because he’s an undocumented alien, according to birthers, all Liddy could say was “well…”
“I’m serious,” Matthews said. “Let’s — and by the way, do you think his wife is in on this, his mother? How many people are in on this conspiracy to make him look like e was born here? I figure his mother must be involved, his grandparents must be involved. How many people are part of this cover-up?”
This video is from MSNBC’s Hardball, broadcast July 23, 2009.