Bob Vander Plaats

Iowa GOP kingmaker flirted with birtherism

Video shows influential conservative activist Bob Vander Plaats endorsing Donald Trump's birther quest


Justin Elliott
July 20, 2011 6:39PM (UTC)

Earlier this month I interviewed Bob Vander Plaats, the Iowa conservative activist who authored the notorious Marriage Vow signed by Michele Bachmann. (The one with the gratuitous slavery reference and talk of porn and Shariah.)

Many of Vander Plaats' more extreme views are already well known (he wants to ban porn, he thinks homosexuality is a "public health risk"), but we can now add birtherism to that list.

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Today Think Progress dug up a video showing Vander Plaats in March praising Donald Trump's "investigation" of Obama's birthplace and generally speaking approvingly of birtherism:

"If I’m Obama, which I’m not. I’ve got a birth certificate -- which means I’m more prepared to be President than he is, for a lot of reasons," he says.

Vander Plaats also praises Trump for being "bold" for taking up the issue and notes that "[Trump] is more and more convinced that this guy is born in Kenya."

The month after this video was recorded, Obama released his long-form birth certificate, marginalizing the birthers even further.

Also of interest: Vander Plaats thinks America is in Libya for its oil, not an idea we've heard from any of the Republican candidates besides Ron Paul.

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Justin Elliott

Justin Elliott is a reporter for ProPublica. You can follow him on Twitter @ElliottJustin

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