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Now that President Obama has taken the surprise step of confronting the birther conspiracy theory head on, the birthers will be satisfied, right? Well, not really.
In an interview with Mother Jones, Andy Martin, a Chicago-based activist and the self-proclaimed "King of the Birthers" says he considers the White House's release of Obama's long-form birth certificate a "tremendous triumph" for the birther movement. But he adds that other questions about Obama's background still remain to be answered. Now, he's demanding the release of Obama's college transcripts and admission documents, as well as an investigation into another conspiracy theory suggesting that a black nationalist Muslim lawyer paid for Obama's law school tuition.
"Well, I'll be damned…it looks OK!" Martin told Mother Jones by phone, as he perused the document for the first time. "I'm stunned…obviously the pressure got to be too much."
Martin credits himself for single-handedly launching the birther movement before Obama had even taken office; he even annouced his own presidential bid in December to push the issue. (Martin insists that he's never doubted that the president was born in Honolulu, but that officials' refusal to release the document cast a cloud of suspicion.) Rather than prove the birthers wrong, Martin insists the release of the birth certificate simply speaks to their political clout.
"As his power waned, he was hectored and forced to respond," Martin says of Obama. According to Martin, White House officials said that it wasn't possible to release the birth certificate under any circumstances on Monday—the same that the copy of the document was issued. "How did it get released on Monday? Obviously they were lying." (A CNN reporter asked White House press secretary Jay Carney about Obama's birth certificate on Monday, but Carney simply dismissed the concerns without further comment.)
Martin, however, says that the birth certificate doesn't put to rest other questions about Obama's past and rise to power. Echoing Donald Trump's recent demands to see Obama's college grades, Martin said he wants to see the "admission files and the transcripts" of Obama’s college years. "The pressure for his college records is going to become relentless," he vows.
Martin says that he also has questions about Khalid Abdullah Tariq al-Mansour, whom fringe activists claim is a black Muslim nationalist who paid for Obama's law degree. Though he says that most birthers will be satisfied with the document released by the White House today, Martin points out there's another wing of the birther movement that still won’t believe that Obama's a natural-born citizen because he has a Kenyan father.
For his part, Martin doesn't plan to drop his own campaign to challenge Obama for president. "I’m running as the guy who now forced Obama" to release his birth certificate, Martin says triumphantly. Then he adds without elaboration: "Our god is stronger than Obama's god, whatever his god is."