Arizona Official Threatens to Take Obama Off Ballot
Secretary of state wants proof of birth from Hawaii
By Mark Russell,  Newser Staff
Suggested by anothernewsjunkie
Posted May 19, 2012 6:36 AM CDT
Former Arizona Republican Rep. J.D. Hayworth, left, handing paperwork to Arizona Secretary of State Ken Bennett, right, and State Election Services Director Amy Bjelland.   (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

(Newser) – Arizona's secretary of state insists he's not a birther—"I believe that the president was born in Hawaii," says Ken Bennett, "or at least I hope he was." Nevertheless, Bennett says that if he does not get confirmation from Hawaii that Barack Obama was born there, the president could be removed from the Arizona ballot this fall, reports the Boston Herald. Bennett's original comment was made in an email to an Arizona birther, saying, "if Hawaii can’t or won’t provide verification of the president’s birth certificate, I will not put his name on the ballot," notes the Phoenix New Times.

Of course, as Bennett is looking into a 2014 run for governor, some of his comments could be populist politics. But that courting birthers is considered a winning electoral strategy is still a depressing comment on the sad state of Arizona politics, writes Laurie Roberts in the Arizona Republic. "Aaaaaaaaand we're off to the races once again," Roberts writes. "The race, that would be, to determine the loopiest, looniest oh-so-laughable state in the land."