After CNN President Jon Klein reportedly emailed information to the staff of CNN's Lou Dobbs Tonight that Klein said shows the "story" about President Obama's birth certificate "is dead," host Lou Dobbs noted that evidence -- which was a statement by the Hawaii Health Department that in 2001, paper records were replaced by electronic records -- on air as Klein instructed, but then asked CNN contributor Roland Martin: "When this could be dispelled so quickly, and -- and simply by producing [the birth certificate], why not do it?"
In the July 23 email to the Lou Dobbs Tonight staff, obtained by Mediabistro's TVNewser, Klein pointed to evidence debunking birther conspiracy theories that Dobbs "should be sure to cite" during that evening's broadcast. Specifically, Klein included in his email information from CNN's "political researchers" that stated "the state of Hawaii Health Department went paperless" in 2001, that the "[p]aper documents were discarded," and that "[t]he official record of Obama's birth is now an official ELECTRONIC record" [emphasis in original]. But while Dobbs did mention during his July 23 CNN show that "the state of Hawaii says it can't release a paper copy of the president's original birth certificate because they say the state government discarded the original document when the health department records went electronic," he nonetheless continued to question the version of Obama's birth certificate available online and argue that Obama should "produce" a valid birth certificate.
From Klein's July 23 email, obtained by TVNewser:
----- Original Message -----
From: Klein, Jon (CNN)
Sent: Thu Jul 23 19:00:44 2009
Subject: Important re birth certificate
I asked the political researchers to dig into the question "why couldn't Obama produce the ORIGINAL birth certificate?"
This is what they forwarded. It seems to definitively answer the question. Since the show's mission is for Lou to be the explainer and enlightener, he should be sure to cite this during your segment tonite. And then it seems this story is dead - because anyone who still is not convinced doesn't really have a legitimate beef.
*In 2001 - the state of Hawaii Health Department went paperless.*Paper documents were discarded*The official record of Obama's birth is now an official ELECTRONIC record Janice Okubo, spokeswoman for the Health Department told the Honolulu Star Bulletin, "At that time, all information for births from 1908 (on) was put into electronic files for consistent reporting," she said.
Introducing a segment about Obama's birth certificate during the July 23 edition of Lou Dobbs Tonight, Dobbs repeated the research forwarded by Klein regarding the Hawaii Health Department, stating:
DOBBS: President Obama promised transparency and openness in his administration. Yet, he's chosen not to release his original birth certificate or a copy of it.
And a number of Americans are asking, why not? The left-wing media has attacked me because I simply asked the question. Meanwhile, the state of Hawaii says it can't release a paper copy of the president's original birth certificate because they say the state government discarded the original document when the health department records went electronic some eight years ago.
That explanation, however, has not satisfied some critics.
However, during the discussion that followed, Dobbs again said that Obama should produce a birth certificate. Dobbs stated: "My -- my issue is this, OK? When this could be dispelled so quickly, and -- and simply by producing it, why not do it?" Dobbs also raised concerns about the copy of Obama's birth certificate that FactCheck.org posted online, referring to it as "a document that says there's another document":
ROLAND MARTIN (CNN contributor): That is an official document. What is in the newspaper is a birth announcement, Congressman. Come on.