Skip to comments.A Conversation with Philip J. Berg, Esq. (Obama birth certificate lawsuit)
Posted on 08/23/2008 11:11:37 PM PDT by doug from upland
A Conversation with Philip J. Berg, Esq.
Fairly late yesterday evening, I had the opportunity to speak with Philip Berg, the Philadelphia attorney who filed suit against Illinois senator Barack Obama in Federal Court in Philadelphia, questioning the constitutional eligibility of his candidacy for president.
I was fortunate enough to be in the right place at the right time to break the story, which only now is beginning to gain traction for a hopeful leap into the mainstream media. Berg, who served as Deputy Attorney General of Pennsylvania for eight years, ran twice for governor in 1990 and 1998 and once for the U.S. Senate in 1994, was former chair of the Democratic Party in Montgomery (PA) County and a former member of the Democratic State Committee, was more than happy to speak with me yesterday afternoon in the lobby of the courthouse following a hearing in the chambers of the Hon. R. Barclay Surrick.
Immediately, we established that we couldn't be more ideologically dissimilar. He believes that the United States government was behind the attacks of September 11, 2001; the very mention of such theories make me ill. He was an ardent supporter of Hillary Clinton's candidacy during the primaries; I sell tee shirts showing the former first lady and one of her quotes ("We're going to take things away from you on behalf of the common good," said in June 2004) juxtaposed under the words "RE-DEFEAT COMMUNISM."
Needless to say, Philip Berg and I are very different. I'm not sure that I completely buy into the various allegations made in the complaint filed late on Thursday afternoon, but I value more than anything other than my wife and child the United States Constitution and the ideas and ideals of those who wrote it here in Philadelphia so many years ago; for that reason, I firmly believe that Berg's action against Barack Obama must be given the full attention that it deserves, for the sake of America and everything for which She stands.
Philip Berg, from what I can tell, is not the stark-raving mad whack-job that people on the American political left are already portraying him to be. In our two discussions, he was rational, he was calm, he was congenial and showed a sense of humor -- something I thought inexistent in most liberals. I'm not afraid to say that I like the guy.
He found time to fit me in amidst an increasingly busy schedule. He had just completed a 20-minute live, drive-time radio interview with a San Diego, CA show, presumably Roger Hedgecock's show, but I don't know for sure. Earlier on Friday, he taped a 20-minute interview with Webster Tarpley, apparently an influential figure among those who, like Berg, feel that our federal government, incapable and cumbersome as it is, was able to organize and execute the 9/11 attacks and keep the conspiracy quiet afterwards. I didn't press on Tarpley; I'm like David Banner when I get angry, only with love handles. Berg also mentioned that he was to be on Coast To Coast AM early this morning from about 1:15 to 3:00 a.m., and on Monday was scheduled for another drive-time interview on a Mississippi radio station.
The mainstream press, once it does grab a hold of this story, will undoubtedly cast Philip Berg as either (1) a nutjob with a questionable past or (2) a low-level party operative retained by Hillary Clinton and her flunkies to do some dirty work in the days leading up to the nominating convention in Denver. I thought I'd tackle the latter issue first, perhaps to determine where his loyalties lie and how he feels about the candidates.
Being the natural skeptic that I am, Mr. Berg, I couldn't help but think that a relatively well-known and respectable local party operative such as yourself would be the perfect person to act as surrogate on behalf of Hillary Clinton and her campaign, only a matter of weeks after she somehow maneuvered her way into having her name included in the nomination. Care to comment?
I have had no direct or indirect contact with anyone on the Hillary Clinton campaign. Did I help her in the primaries? Yes. Was I in favor of her over Obama? Yes. What did I do? I contributed some money and made some phone calls to various states for her. Other than that, I attended one Montgomery County [PA] Democratic Committee dinner at which her daughter spoke, though for the record, Obamas representative was also at the same function. So, am I closely involved with them? No.
And as I told you this afternoon, even among those who helped me prepare for this case, while I know they may be against Obamas violation of the Constitution, I do not even know nor have I asked where they stand politically.
What was it that drew you to Hillary's candidacy in the first place?
I think that she is a remarkable woman. I think that over the years she has shown herself to be a leader. I was looking at everyone at the very beginning and I thought she really stood her ground. I think that we could use a woman in the White House, and I think she knows the issues, and the experience she had being First Lady helped, along with the experience gained in the Senate since then.
Throughout the past year, though, she and Barack Obama had shown themselves to be ideologically planting their flag on the same turf. Before you knew about all of this other stuff, before birth certificates, citizenship and eligibility, what was it that so turned you off to Obama?
Obama just never turned me on. There has always been something missing there, and as his various associations came out, the kind of people he was involved with, it really turned my stomach. I couldnt believe it.
That, and he had an excuse for everything. His phony responses to the Rev. [Jeremiah] Wright issue turned me off. He said "I never knew what he was like." He was a member of that church for twenty years. Twenty years! When the story first broke, he went on all of the television and cable stations and claimed he was never in the pew when Rev. Wright made any of these remarks. By the time he made his speech in Philadelphia days latera speech that the mainstream media agreed might have been the best in the history of the worldhe did a complete turnabout and admitted that he was in the pew at the time of the remarks. At what point is enough, enough?
It should be noted that Oprah joined that church in 1984 and left in 1986 because she felt that the viewpoint of Rev. Wright and that church could be detrimental to her television career. [I suppose he meant THIS --Jeff] Obama was somehow there for twenty years and did not know what Rev. Wright was like? Nobody can believe that.
And then it went on, issue after issue, association after association, Bill Ayers and so on and so forth. And the media let him slide. They let him slide on doing drugs. Cocaine, marijuana some other candidate saying this would be hammered by the media.
Everything was overlooked. Look at the issue hes making now, about John McCain not knowing how many properties he owns.
The way it was phrased in the television commercial, it looked to me to be an obvious reference to his age. Don't you think?
Thats right. Why cant we ask Obama about the time he said he had visited 57 states? If Hillary Clinton had stated that, youd still be hearing about it today. If McCain had said that, youd still be hearing about it. But Barack Obama says it, and it just disappears.
Not to mention that, in the weeks and months leading up to the 2004 election, the folks in your party were up in arms about any reference to the considerable wealth of Teresa Heinz Kerry. Now that it is Cindy McCain and not Ms. Imperceptible Accent, family wealth is fair game. Why is that?
I don't know. Listen, shes worth over $100 million dollars. They can have as many houses as they want. But I must give credit to McCain hes never taken an earmark during all his years in the Senate for the state of Arizona. Now, the guy has crossed the line on a number of bills and I cannot say that Im rooting for McCain, but he certainly has more pluses than Obama.
Obama is an empty suit. Hes very good when he delivers a speechI dont know if he writes them himself or has a team of speechwritersbut when hes off of the teleprompter, his oratory goes down the drain. Thats why he didnt want to do all of these town meetings across the country with McCain, and the atrocious performance at Saddleback Church last week shows that Obama will likely falter in the three scheduled debates before the election.
I chalk much of his success up to the influence and agenda setting of the mainstream media. Speaking of which, are you happy with the coverage which the mainstream press has given your civil action?
Well, no. First of all, the mainstream media hasnt covered it yet. Im doing an interview with a journalist tomorrow morning at 10:00 who says hell be able to get it out into the mainstream media.
Well, once it bridges that gap for the first time, then it should spread just as the recent accounts of John Edwards' infidelity did. It took more than eight months for the story to reach a newspaper or television show of note.
Yes. I was talking to a producer from one of the Fox shows, and she said that until it appears in the mainstream press, we cannot cover it. The Times-Herald, out of Norristown here, theyre airing a story here either Saturday or Sunday, and I have a feeling that theyll do a good job on it, seeing that theyre pretty much my hometown paper.
Im encouraged by the response over the Internet. Im discouraged by the people in the mainstream press but I think were going to crack it on this case. There are just so many people involved at this point people are sending out stories all over the place Ive been involved in big cases over the years, and this is the single greatest initial response Ive ever received in any case and I think it's because it's so significant were talking about a serious constitutional issue which has never been dealt with before. If were right, which I believe we are, Obama really should be taken to task, because he knows that he violated the law. And I hope, if were right, that someone brings criminal charges against him.
I think its an absolute disgrace. If you go back to his record when he was running for the state senate, he threw off a competitor because he didnt meet the requirements. So I think this guy has got a lot of nerve, I really do, and I believe were right, and I believe that action should be taken against him. He could cause, as I said to the judge today, irreparable harm to people in this country, and if it happens, there could be all sorts of bad stuff going on.
Is there any historical precedent for this? I'm not entirely positive, but I think that George Romney--Mitt's father--was deemed constitutionally eligible to run for president in 1968 even though he was born in Mexico.
Im not sure about that, but if you remember [Thomas] Eagleton, he was forced out because of mental treatments--shock treatments--and was replaced with Sergeant Shriver who, along with McGovern, lost.
A change of this sort is always detrimental, and thats why we believe the Republicans are aware of this, theyre waiting, and they will bring it out in September or October and, at that point, would destroy the Democratic Party. Because of the backlash and the people who will be so disgusted, it will lose the presidency, and it could lose the Senate, the House, the governor races and other races across this country. I really think that Obama owes it to everyone to produce, right now, a vault birth certificate and proof of the oath of allegiance he took upon his return to this country from Indonesia, which I dont believe exists. If he has these documents, he owes it to everyone to bring them out right now.
I've written a lot over the past few months about race and politics, and back in February and March warned of the potential for Barack Obama and his supporters to counter substance with charges of racism and cries of racial intolerance. What do you say to those people who inevitably will, perhaps looking at the underlying African story, call you a racist?
Of course some people might look at me and assume Im doing this because hes black. Im not. Im Jewish, and Im a life-long member of the NAACP, so people will be hard-pressed to confront me on any of those issues.
Rumors as to Barack Obama's citizenship have been swirling around the Internet for months. Why did you wait so long to file suit?
They asked me the same question when I was doing the radio interview for the San Diego station. I received a phone call about ten days ago, and someone said "youve got to do this." I explained that, before I went forth with it, I had to do due diligence, check all of the sources and check all of the information to find out if it was for real. And I believe it is for real.
Factcheck.org released a statement yesterday, including images showing an embossed seal and appropriate signatures, and maintained that after fondling the certificate they could attest to its authenticity. How satisfied are you with the independent forensic document experts cited in your complaint?
Well, I'm not familiar with that site [he asked me to spell it --Jeff] but Ive seen documentation supporting our arguments just the same and Im satisfied with that. Look, the truth comes down to this -- at this point in time, its time to fish or cut bait, time to stop pussy-footing around. At this point in time, Obama owes it to people to produce the documents. If Im wrong, even if he doesnt want to handle it himself and has the person in charge of his campaign communications come out and say, "here is the vault copy of the birth certificate, here is the certified copy of his oath of allegiance from when he came back from Indonesia, this issue should be put to bed and Mr. Berg should withdraw his suit immediately or well sue him to high heaven," then Im wrong. If they do not do that within the next day or so, then I know were right. If they let the case linger, then I believe were right. The challenge Ive made to them is that, if they dont produce these documents, then we know theyre wrong.
Yes, but in a constitutional issue such as this one, wouldn't you carry the burden of proof, Mr. Berg?
Yes, it is on me, but what I am saying here is that Ive created an issue which Im sure will be all over the convention next week, whether the reporters want to deal with it or not. It should be brought up with the delegates, someone should bring it up and confront them with it. Id like to go to Denver, and if I have the chance to speak in front of Obama delegates, I would explain that "if Im wrong, Im out of here but it is incumbent upon you to ask your candidate to confirm that he is a citizen and produce the necessary documentation, and if he doesnt do it, then this party is going to go down the drain."
Switching gears now, the mainstream media has proven to be very protective of Barack Obama up to this point. I've even suggested that sitting on the John Edwards story in the weeks prior to the Iowa caucus was done not so much to protect Edwards, but to protect Obama from Hillary Clinton, who stood to benefit from Edwards' votes should he have dropped out early. Do you worry that you will be discredited as a result of bringing attention to the various issues, inconsistencies and unanswered questions surrounding the mainstream media's chosen candidate?
No. Im not worried about that. I can handle myself in front of the media. If the media wants to confront me, Ill confront them. Ill ask them why I need to do this, why they didnt do this months ago. With the resources at their disposal, with the access and the ability to travel, it is incumbent upon them to have properly vetted Obama, and the fact that they have not done so is a disgrace.
A couple of years ago, in 2005, you were subject to sanctions and fines for reported ethics violations. A few years before that, there were the Federal Racketeering actions filed against President Bush and others suggesting prior knowledge and a coverup of the September 11 attacks. And, of course, in the wake of the 2000 election, you called for the resignation of three Supreme Court Justices. You and I discussed, this afternoon, the effect of credibility on the authentication of rumor -- how do you transcend such issues with regard to this action?
The sanction and fines are on appeal.
The RICO action was withdrawn because we wanted to put together a more detailed RICO complaint, and thats why, when I represented Ellen Mariani she subsequently did not want to pursue the action. I got a second plaintiff named William Rodriguez, and things were moving along in the case, when he decided to withdraw for personal reasons. The case has put me into personal bankruptcy, but I plan to come back out a proceed with the case.
And yes, I asked three Supreme Court Justices to resign because of their involvement with the 2000 election. I think what they did was improper. I spent three weeks down in Florida and, on the Saturday in question, I was sent out to a county in the panhandle and discovered, personally, white-out painted on ballots. Serving as a volunteer sent to check on things, I confronted the judge for that single countyI forget the name of the county at the momentand some people say I was lucky to have survived, and only did so because an NBC affiliate was there filming and a reporter was there taking pictures which ended up running on the front page of the paper in that area. Other people said, "you know, you were ten miles from the Alabama border, and if those news media people hadnt been there, you might never have been heard from again."
See, Im not afraid to come forth with issues which need to be exposed. Am I perfect? Of course not. In this case, however, I feel 99 percent that were right on this particular case.
In terms of credibility, my very successful record in big cases shows some of that. Im the only attorney in the country to defeat "cell phone" legislation in Hilltown Township, Bucks County, PA, meant to ban the use of hand-held cell phones while behind the wheel of a car, and did that pro bono. I have also represented PAWSPerforming Animal Welfare Societyin California, pro bono, protecting the rights of abused circus elephants, and was extremely successful in that case. My record, over the years, is such that I can stand on my own two feet in front of anyone.
This is also my 27th year as a member in the Barren Hill Volunteer Fire Company/Fire Police, where I have served as lieutenant, as sergeant, and just as a member. I average over 100 calls per year.
Regardless of credibility, how do you get past the circumstantial nature of the evidence cited in your complaint -- for instance, the account of Barack Obama's mother staying in Kenya and not flying back to Hawaii until after Barack's birth, all based on a custom at the time which prevented late-stage pregnant women from boarding airplanes?
Well, thats going to be tough, but the way around it is the grandmotherIm not sure if she is still livingor the sister and brother who, according to reports, stated that they were at the Mombasa, Kenya hospital when Barack Obama was born. By subpoenaing records from that hospital, by subpoenaing the family members, we can obtain the evidence we need.
I think that, in this type of case, the burden of proof shifts. I think that Sen. Obama owes it to his party and to the citizens of this country to show that I am wrong. If I am, if he produces the documentation, the case will go away, Ill go away, and he can go forth and do what he can in the election. But if he ignores this topic, I believe it shows guilt on his part.
Now that Judge Surrick denied the temporary restraining order, where do you go from here?
We plan to wait until the various parties are served, and then Ill make the appropriate motion to the court for expedited discovery. At that point, well probably have a conference call with the judge to see where and when we will be proceeding, but this case, because of the nature of it and because the judge said he will make an effort to keep the case moving along, it needs an expedited track to overcome the normal time frame of six months to one year and beyond. This case cannot take that long.
This has to be brought to the forefront. Thats why, again, Sen. Obama really owes it to everyone to confront this. He should threaten me. Berg, he should say, here are the documents and, if you do not withdraw the suit, I will sue you. Right now, he has no basis to sue me. If he does have the documents, he should show them, and Ill walk away. Ill withdraw the case. But, again, he must show me a certified vault copy of his birth certificate and must show me a certified copy of the oath of allegiance taken between the time he was 19 to 21 at a Consulate, U.S. Embassy or the like.
If those documents can be presented, again, Im out of here. But I dont think he can, I dont think he will, and I think it is a total disgrace on his part.
Okay, in twenty seconds or less, why is it so important that these proceedings move forward?
It is important for these proceedings to go forward at this time because the later it goes on, the more disheveled the Democratic Party will look. If it is proven later on, or if it is otherwise not acknowledged until after he is elected, then procedural steps will have to be taken whether the news comes before or after January 20. Either way, were looking at the destruction of the Democratic Party.
It is a disservice to every citizen of this country, especially those who donated hundreds of millions of dollars to his campaign. It is a disservice to the entire voting public, and indeed to the system as a whole.
He's dreaming. NObama will make sure that the records have been destroyed and his family will be "unavailable."
The problem with such a lawsuit is that there is no possible weaker lineup than Obama/Biden.
Knock off Obama with a lawsuit and *whoever* replaces him will poll better by November.
ok, I’m convinced h e is the antichrist.
That’s great, Doug
Sorry, no prize is available at this time.
This is actually a very good interview, at least on the subject in hand. Where it does fall down, though, is that the evidence referred to at the end should already have been gathered.
I find it completely extraordinary that ANYONE could seriously think that the American government would bomb the twin towers. However, and sadly, he is obviously not alone in this lunacy.
“you know, you were ten miles from the Alabama border, and if those news media people hadnt been there, you might never have been heard from again.”
This guy is full of it!! The Democrats still can’t get over the fact they lost Florida, and every time those ballots were recounted they continued to lose by greater margins.
They should never have tried to disenfranchise the military absentee voters.
Now, look at the blow up of that plaque.
If we only had an honest MSM this story would take off...The lawsuit and the Internet are the only way to push this forward...We have said for months that Obama has no proof of American citizenship therefore he is ineligible to run for office....
Can the Thomas More Law Center get involved in this too?..They are handling the Haditha Marines Case, they might be able to help in this case too as it would appear this is going to wind up before the U.S.Supreme Court
i prefer this one bit crude but i aint accomplished
if some one can post please do if you like it
i prefer this one bit crude but i aint accomplished
if some one can post please do if you like it
ooops sorry I said i aint accomplished
www.clixx.com/images/Barry.JPG ok ok i know
i’m also convinced is, too. I have been so for a few months, and TSIGTHTF, real soon...
I am not endorsing this theory of Obama being constitutionally barred from the presidency. It is, however, quite interesting. I would like to see a complete investigation of this.
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