Sen. David Vitter (R-LA) is strongly denying that he is a birther, after he was recorded on video approving of birther lawsuits at a Tea Party event this past weekend. And furthermore, he’s denying that he ever praised the lawsuits, either — and blasting the “liberal thought police” for opposing people’s right to bring them.
“This attack is ridiculous,” Vitter said in statement, Politico reports. “I’m not a birther, and I even said the issue is distracting. But I think people should have appropriate access to the courts. Is even that statement unacceptable now to the liberal thought police?”
Of course, that’s not what Vitter said. What he actually said was that “I support conservative legal organizations and others who would bring that to court. I think that is the valid and most possibly effective grounds to do it.” That is, he encouraged the lawsuits as the “most possibly effective” way to bust President Obama for his birth certificate.
Again, here’s the original video, which was provided to us by the Louisiana Democratic Party:
“I know all the information I’ve been able to get my hands on through the media. But obviously with the mainstream media as a filter, that’s not a whole lot. I personally don’t have standing to bring litigation in court. But I support conservative legal organizations and others who would bring that to court. I think that is the valid and most possibly effective grounds to do it. Let me also say this. I think quite frankly, and I’ll be blunt, I think if we focus on that issue and let our eye off the ball in terms of this fall’s election, in terms of ongoing policy votes, week in, week out in the Congress, I think that’s a big mistake. I think we need (applause) — I think first and foremost, I’m not dismissing any of this. I think first and foremost, we need to fight the Obama agenda at the ballot box, starting this fall, we can (inaudible, due to applause) a new and very different Congress.”
On the other hand, it is quite interesting to see a Republican politician favoring the people’s right to seek redress of grievances in court. Perhaps he would change his mind if the birther issue were rephrased in the form of a medical tort.