Exclusive: Why Was Senate Candidate Forced to Prove His Citizenship?

by MARGARET CALHOUN HEMENWAY July 16, 2010
Adding to the long-running Obama eligibility dispute, Army veteran and naturalized American Hector Maldonado, recently pointed out in a Branson, MO radio interview that the State of Missouri demanded he prove his citizenship status in order to be permitted to run for Senate from the "Show Me" state. Maldonado was asked by the Office of the Missouri Secretary of State to prove his citizenship status and was threatened via certified letter with being removed from the ballot if he did not comply by a deadline of May 12. On the Missouri Secretary of State's website, the qualifications to run for U.S. Senate are cited:
 
U. S. Senator - Art. I § 3 U. S. Constitution
 
    * At least 30 years of age
    * Citizen of United States for 9 years
    * Resident of Missouri
 
In responding to Missouri's demand, Maldonado questioned whether the state similarly asked candidate Barack Obama for proof of citizenship when he filed to run in Missouri in the 2008 electoral cycle. According to Maldonado, the Secretary of State's office declined to answer this question although it told him that his own proof of citizenship was a matter of public record (so presumably the lack of any Obama proof of citizenship is also a matter of public record). Maldonado is mulling a possible lawsuit against the State since the Secretary of State is required to protect Missouri against fraud and corruption.
 
Maldonado, who became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 1995 and was awarded two Bronze Stars from his Iraq and Afghanistan deployments, noted Michelle Obama's "slip of the tongue" comment when she mentioned Obama's home country Kenya (a comment widely circulated in a YouTube video), but said that it wasn't up to him to decide whether Obama was lying or not-- or whether there were "holes in his birth story." The Army veterandiscussed Obama's expending as much as one million or more dollars to hire lawyers to conceal his citizenship-related records. He also raised the subject of why anyone running for public office believes he is entitled to this level of secrecy- especially since it is impossible to determine whether Obama conforms to requirements of the U.S. Constitution's Article II, Section 1, unless he can produce an original birth certificate.
 
The phrase "I'm from Missouri-- show me" is widely understood to mean that one is skeptical of a matter and not easily convinced.
 
Maldonado is not the first with prior military service who has raised Obama's eligibility-- Air Force Colonel Greg Hollister (retired) was a plaintiff in an early eligibility lawsuit filed in federal court. (The eligibility lawsuits have been dismissed primarily for ostensible reasons of lack of standing or jurisdiction.) Other military reservists have also filed suit to try to determine whether Obama is legally serving as Commander-in-Chief, consistent with the oaths they swore as officers to support and defend the Constitution, against all enemies, foreign and domestic. Maldonado recited this part of his oath and pointed out that Americans need to realize that they are facing the challenge of a three front war- one in Iraq, one in Afghanistan- and the third here, “the real threat,” on the home front- in which the U.S. is threatened with losing the rule of law by disrespecting its Constitution.  
 
More recently, an active duty officer, Army Lieutenant Colonel Terry Lakin, also decorated with a Bronze Star, and like Maldonado, with prior deployments to combat zones, publicly raised the question of Obama's compliance with Article II, Section 1 and is facing court-martial for disobeying military orders in pursuit of the truth about whether Obama is legally serving as Commander-in-Chief. Lakin's military orders to deploy to Afghanistan required him to produce copies of his birth certificate. The Army recently indicated it seeks to deny Lakin the customary right to evidence needed to defend against criminal charges by denying witnesses or documents from Hawaii. Hawaiian officials have insisted, without producing a single document, that Obama was born in the Aloha State. 
 
To this day, no hospital in Hawaii will claim to be the birthplace of President Obama, nor has the name of any physician or midwife who attended Obama's birth surfaced. A former Hawaiian senior elections clerk, Tim Adams, recently offered the first repudiation of the Hawaiian Health Department's assertions that Obama was Hawaiian-born, claiming everyone in his office knew there was no hospital birth record for Obama. Meanwhile, prominent Kenyans continue to declare that Obama is a son of Kenya- most recently Cabinet Minister James Orengo on the floor of Kenya's Parliament in late March.  
 
Maldonado questioned whether he was singled out as a naturalized American of Mexican descent to prove his citizenship status, while Obama was evidently not asked by the State of Missouri to present any evidence for his citizenship when he filed for federal office and continues to stonewall the release of an original birth certificate or any evidence which would prove his "natural born" status. The issue Maldonado raises - of whether other candidates for federal office are being held to the same standard of verification as he has been held to - is a valid concern. 
 
As former CNN commentator Lou Dobbs discovered in an investigation of the "birther" controversy last summer, in the State of Illinois, there is no verification of eligibility required to run for office - Dobbs described it as an "honor system." Yet in America, "all men are created equal" and are entitled to be treated equally under the laws. The federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission was established to prevent minorities from being unfairly discriminated against. Perhaps Mr. Maldonado should consider, beyond contemplating a lawsuit against the state of Missouri, appealing to the EEOC to investigate whether he was racially-profiled for a standard of proof of eligibility that other candidates for federal office were not required to meet.
 
 FamilySecurityMatters.org Contributing Editor Margaret Calhoun Hemenway spent 15 years on Capitol Hill, in the House and Senate, and five years as a White House appointee serving President Bush at both DoD and NASA. For further information, contact: Margaret Hemenway at (202) 448-9015.

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