Imagine the family getting together for Thanksgiving. Imagine it.
The latest discovery from Ancestry.com shows that President Obama is related to conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh, one of his most vocal critics, as well as to frequent political opponent Sarah Palin.
Obama and Palin are 10th cousins, connected through their common ancestor John Smith. Obama and Limbaugh are 10th cousins, once removed, through common ancestor Richard Terrell.
Other political adversaries also share family ties – the study also found that Sen. Harry Reid, the Democratic majority leader in the Senate, is also related to Palin – as well as to conservative commentator Ann Coulter. All three are related through John Lathrop, who was exiled in 1634 to colonial Massachusetts after becoming a minister of an illegal independent church in England.
And a leadership gene clearly runs through Samuel Hinckley’s family, because Obama, Palin, and former president George W. Bush are all related through common ancestor Hinckley, who was among the first wave of settlers in America in the 1600s. Obama and Bush are 11th cousins; Palin and Bush are 11th cousins as well.
So Palin and Obama are related through two different ancestors? If we trace that back, we might finally isolate the gene for charisma. As a noted beta male, let me assure you: I’ll pay any price.
Actually, the funniest angle on this dopey story comes from reader Brian R, who turned it into a goof on Birthers. Here’s §338-18 of the Hawaiian Revised Statutes governing disclosure of personal records:
Disclosure of records. (a) To protect the integrity of vital statistics records, to ensure their proper use, and to ensure the efficient and proper administration of the vital statistics system, it shall be unlawful for any person to permit inspection of, or to disclose information contained in vital statistics records, or to copy or issue a copy of all or part of any such record, except as authorized by this part or by rules adopted by the department of health.
(b) The department shall not permit inspection of public health statistics records, or issue a certified copy of any such record or part thereof, unless it is satisfied that the applicant has a direct and tangible interest in the record. The following persons shall be considered to have a direct and tangible interest in a public health statistics record:
(1) The registrant;
(2) The spouse of the registrant;
(3) A parent of the registrant;
(4) A descendant of the registrant;
(5) A person having a common ancestor with the registrant;
Dude — Rush can request the birth certificate.
Here he is today semi-jokingly disclaiming any familial ties to The One. Click the image to watch.