The weirdest thing about this? Even Birthers, as far as I know, don’t claim that The One grew up in Kenya. Their standard narrative seems to be that he was born there, moved with his parents to Hawaii, and then with his mother to Indonesia. Where Huck got this idea, I simply have no idea.
Actually, scratch that. The weirdest thing about this is … Huckabee’s not a Birther.
In an interview with The Steve Malzberg Show on Monday, Huckabee talked about Obama’s “having grown up in Kenya.”
Huckabee’s comment came in response the host asserting that Obama spent “millions of dollars in courts all over this country to defend against having to present a birth certificate.”
“One thing that I do know is his having grown up in Kenya, his view of the Brits, for example, very different than the average American,” Huckabee said in response.
“If you think about it, his perspective as growing up in Kenya with a Kenyan father and grandfather, their view of the Mau Mau Revolution in Kenya is very different than ours because he probably grew up hearing that the British were a bunch of imperialists who persecuted his grandfather,” Huckabee added.
My read on this is the same as Weigel’s, that Huckabee’s not questioning Obama’s citizenship so much as mistakenly making a hash of his biography. He knows that Obama grew up abroad, but somewhere along the line, between Birther chatter about Kenya and Gingrich’s talking points about Obama’s “Kenyan, anti-colonial worldview,” he forgot that it was Indonesia where O was raised. What’s interesting about the clip isn’t the error about Kenya, it’s the fact that he does appear to buy into the Birther subtext that O is fundamentally different and foreign, a premise he seemed to reject previously in dismissing concerns about Obama’s birth certificate and his relationship with Jeremiah Wright. I’m honestly surprised. Exit question: Is this proof that he’s running or that he isn’t?
Update: Oopsie, says his spokesman:
“Governor Huckabee simply misspoke when he alluded to President Obama growing up in ‘Kenya.’ The Governor meant to say the President grew up in Indonesia.”
“When the Governor mentioned he wanted to know more about the President, he wasn’t talking about the President’s place of birth – the Governor believes the President was born in Hawaii. The Governor would however like to know more about where President Obama’s liberal policies come from and what else the President plans to do to this country – as do most Americans.”
Again, he’s formally rejecting the Birther claim about Obama’s origins while winking at it by wondering about the mysterious origins of his policies. Where did Hillary’s or Pelosi’s or Reid’s or John Kerry’s policies come from? You’re going to get ruinous spending and weakness on foreign policy under any of them (maybe less so on the latter with Clinton). Imagine President Nancy. Imagine it.