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Who is pushing the story of "birthers"? In the New York Post, The New Republic's Jamie Kirchik makes the case that bloggers on the left, not the right, are far more aggressive in doing so. Why? To avoid losing more important debates on policy, he says:

Far from seeing these charges as any sort of real threat to Obama's legitimacy, liberals report every outburst of the birther brigades with glee - because they derive maximum political benefit from stirring up the story as long as possible. Why debate the intricacies of a massive overhaul of the nation's health care system when you can conflate principled conservative critics of the program with a bunch of nutty conspiracy theorists?

That thesis drew a flurry of reactions, including these.

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