Some two years ago, Wayne Allyn Root insinuated that Obama never went to Columbia, simply because Root never met Obama at Columbia, and didn't know anyone who did.
In October, 2009, an email went viral on the internet, spreading that theory while citing Root.
I've now learned that in February 2010, Snopes.com addressed Root's insinuation. The famous debunking site not only cites people who knew Obama at Columbia, it also cites Root as a source for the rumor.
Of course, Root is also described as the Libertarian Party's 2008 presidential candidate. I guess Root's supporters should praise Root for getting the LP brand out there, however embarrassing the context.
"Most expressions of this rumor feed off the statement (referenced in a Wall Street Journal editorial) that 'Fox News contacted some 400 of [Obama's] classmates and found no one who remembered him' and a statement made by Wayne Allyn Root (the Libertarian Party's 2008 vice presidential nominee who also attended Columbia at the same time as Barack Obama) that 'I don't know a single person at Columbia that knows him, and they all know me. I don't have a classmate who ever knew Barack Obama at Columbia.'
"...it isn't true that 'no one ever came forward from Obama's past saying they knew him, attended school with him, was his friend, etc.' Those who have attested to having daily personal experience with him during his time at that school include:
"Friend and roommate Sohale Siddiqi, whom the Associated Press located and interviewed in May 2008.
"Roommate Phil Boerner, who provided his recollections of sharing a New York City apartment with classmate Barack Obama to the Columbia College Today alumni publication and the New York Times in early 2009.
"Michael L. Baron, who taught the year-long honors seminar in American Foreign Policy that Barack Obama took during his senior year at Columbia and recalled in an NBC interview Obama's "easily acing" the class and receiving an A for his senior paper on the topic of nuclear negotiations with the Soviet Union.
"...other external evidence documents Barack Obama's presence at Columbia from 1981-83, including:
"An article by Barack Obama published in the 10 March 1983 edition of Columbia's Sundial school magazine.
"A January 2005 Columbia College Today profile of Barack Obama as a Columbia alumnus.
"A Columbia College press release from November 2008 identifying him as "the first College alumnus to be elected President of the United States.
"Finally, the fatal flaw in the 'Obama didn't go to Columbia' theory is that he couldn't have been admitted to Harvard Law School in 1988 without having received an undergraduate degree. ... yet his time between the end of his Columbia days in 1983 and his entering Harvard Law in 1988 is accounted for ... and no other school claims him as an alumnus, nor does anyone purport to have encountered him as a classmate or student at any other college or university during that period."
Read the Snopes article.
But I guess the important thing is that Root is getting on Fox News. Who cares if Root's claims are ridiculous or not? Certainly not the Fox News audience.
Unfortunately, some Libertarians think the LP should likewise sink to that level if it will help the LP "get votes."
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