Obama to Oprah: Released Certificate to End the 'Silliness'

Thursday, 28 Apr 2011 08:35 AM

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Speaking from one O to another, President Barack Obama explains to TV host and entrepreneur Oprah Winfrey that he finally released his birth certificate because "we can't be distracted by sideshows" at a time when so many serious issues must be addressed. He unveiled a copy of the document Wednesday to end the "silliness."

So, it's official now, for those who don't consider anything official until it's announced on "Oprah" — and they are legion: During a show taped for broadcast May 2, Obama will address the controversial birth certificate issue that has raged since before his election and ramped up recently under potential Republican presidential Donald Trump's relentless crusade for the president to cough up the official document.

Story continues below video.

Oh, sure, Obama addressed the matter during a news conference Wednesday after the White House finally released a copy of the document, but that's just a world stage, while Oprah's is a World Stage. After his news conference, he and wife Michelle headed to Chicago to film the Oprah segment for Monday.

When longtime friend and supporter Oprah asks Obama why he released the document now, he tells her that, amidst the federal budget debate, "the biggest news was this birth certificate thing."

Trump's campaign for openness included his claim that he had sent an investigative team to Hawaii to dissipate the cloud and pinpoint the truth about Obama's birth certificate.

Not to be out-trumped, the president tells Oprah that he had his people persuade Hawaiian officials to waive a law that blocks the release of an official long-form birth certificate to anyone.

In the Oprah interview, he tells her: "And so at that point I said to my team, look, even though this is not usually what the state of Hawaii does, even though the Republican governor of Hawaii, the Democratic governors of Hawaii, all the various officials had confirmed that I was born here, let's ask them for a special dispensation where they will go ahead and provide us with the original to see if we can put this to rest."

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