Breitbart's senior management appended a long editor's note to their post that "exposes" a promotional booklet from President Obama's literary agency in 1991 that describes him as "born in Kenya," and their justification for running with it is ridiculously thin.
On a post by Joel B. Pollak, the higher ups write:
Andrew Breitbart was never a "Birther," and Breitbart News is a site that has never advocated the narrative of "Birtherism." ...
... we discovered, and now present, the booklet described below--one that includes a marketing pitch for a forthcoming book by a then-young, otherwise unknown former president of the Harvard Law Review.
It is evidence--not of the President's foreign origin, but that Barack Obama's public persona has perhaps been presented differently at different times.
So they're basically saying "we don't think Obama was born in Kenya, but we'd like you to know that his identity is slippery and some people thought he was born in Kenya." Thanks, Breitbart Senior Management! Or as The Atlantic's David Graham notes succinctly, "We're not birthers, we're just raising questions so that other folks become birthers."
Just the post about the literary blurb alone wouldn't be too noteworthy or out of the ordinary for the folks at Breitbart, but the fact that they feel like they should justify their post with a lofty editor's note explaining their perfectly reasonable intentions makes it all a bit silly. Why even bother justifying yourself if your justification is so weak?
Update: For those curious about the booklet with the "born in Kenya" blurb, which is in fact real, Miriam Goderich who is from the literary agency that produced it, emailed a statement to Political Wire. "This was nothing more than a fact checking error by me -- an agency assistant at the time. There was never any information given to us by Obama in any of his correspondence or other communications suggesting in any way that he was born in Kenya and not Hawaii. I hope you can communicate to your readers that this was a simple mistake and nothing more." (Breitbart's story, to its credit, does report that she didn't return their calls.)
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.