A Georgia judge heard evidence Thursday from local “birthers” but did not rule on whether President Barack Obama can be on the state ballot in November.
The challenge was brought by Georgia residents who believe Obama was born in his father’s homeland of Kenya, not in the United States. The Constitution requires that all U.S. presidents must be natural-born citizens.
Neither the president nor his attorneys attended the hearing, and lawyers for the plaintiffs argued that Obama should be held in contempt of court, according to the Atlanta Journal Constitution
“It shows not just a contempt for this court, but contempt for the judicial branch," lawyer Van Irion said, the Journal Constitution reported.
"I'm not interested in commentary on that, counselor," Deputy Chief Judge Michael Malihi replied.
Much of the so-called birther controversy evaporated last year when Obama produced a birth certificate stating he was born in Hawaii.
Obama’s lawyer, Michael Jablonski, had written to Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp asking him to call off the hearing, since “it is well established that there is no legitimate issue here,” the Journal Constitution reported. Jablonski indicated he did not plan to attend.
But Kemp said the state was obliged to consider all challenges and warned that Jablonski and his client would be taking a risk if they didn’t show.
There was no indication when Malihi will issue a ruling.
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