Reporting from Washington — Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie, a Democrat said Wednesday that the release of President Obama's long-form birth certificate should put to rest any doubts that he was born in the state.
"Considering all of the investigations that have been done and the information that has been provided, no rational person can question the President's citizenship," Abercrombie said in a statement. "We have found a way – once again – to confirm what we already knew: the President was born here in Hawaii."
Shortly after Abercrombie, a Democrat, took office in December, he told the Los Angeles Times that he hoped to use his new perch to dispel ongoing "birther" conspiracies. He said he "was there" when Obama was born and was friends with the president's father when the two studied at the University of Hawaii.
"More than demonization -- this is self-evisceration of politics," he said in the interview of the unending debate. "Empires fall and countries fall when that takes the place of discourse."
In his statement on Wednesday, Abercrombie said he wanted to respect the memory of Obama's parents, calling them both "dear friends."
"It is an insult to the president, his parents and to the Office to suggest that he was not born in Hawaii," he said. "The state of Hawaii has done everything within our legal ability to disabuse these conspiracy theorists."
The governor's office said that "longstanding" policy has been not to provide photocopies of actual records to fulfill requests for certified copies of certificates but that an exception was made in response to Obama's request.
Hawaii Health Director Loretta Fuddy "exercised her legal authority in a completely appropriate manner in this unique circumstance," state Atty Gen. David Louie said. "We will continue to maintain the strict confidentiality requirements afforded to vital statistics records, such as birth certificates. These requirements help protect the integrity of the records and keep us all safe from crimes, such as identity theft."
Obama's long-form record was retrieved, and two photocopies were made on Monday, witnessed by Fuddy and certified by the state registrar.
Judith Corley, Obama's personal legal counsel, came to the State Department of Health building personally to retrieve them, paying the requisite fees.