Mike Huckabee Falsely Suggests Obama Grew Up In Kenya

Mar 1, 2011 3:59pm

ABC News Michael Falcone reports:

UPDATED: Potential 2012 presidential candidate Mike Huckabee said he “would love to know more” about President Obama’s birth certificate and mistakenly referred to the president’s experience “growing up in Kenya” in an interview on a New York radio station on Monday.

Huckabee made the comments in an interview with conservative talk radio host Steve Malzberg, who asked the former Arkansas governor whether he thought it was troubling that “we don’t have a health record, we don’t have a college record, we don’t have a birth certificate” for Obama.

“I would love to know more,” said Huckabee, who is a Fox News host and is currently in the midst of a nationwide tour for his new book. “What I know is troubling enough.”

“If you think about it, his perspective as growing up in Kenya with a Kenyan father and grandfather,” Huckabee told Malzberg, “their view of the Mau Mau Revolution in Kenya is very different than ours because he probably grew up hearing that the British were a bunch of imperialists who persecuted his grandfather.”

At another point in the interview, Huckabee said, “one thing that I do know is his having grown up in Kenya, his view of the Brits, for example, very different than the average American.”

Obama was born in Hawaii in 1961 and raised there and spent several years in Indonesia. His father was from Kenya, but Obama did not travel there until later in life.

Hogan Gidley, the director of Huckabee’s political action committee, sought to clarify the former governor’s remarks on Tuesday.

“Governor Huckabee simply misspoke when he alluded to President Obama growing up in ‘Kenya.’ The Governor meant to say the President grew up in Indonesia,” Gidley told ABC News. “When the Governor mentioned he wanted to know more about the President, he wasn’t talking about the President’s place of birth — the Governor believes the President was born in Hawaii. The Governor would however like to know more about where President Obama’s liberal policies come from and what else the President plans to do to this country — as do most Americans.”  

But Huckabee’s apparent openness to engaging in questions about Obama’s birth in the radio interview contradicts statements he made in a “Good Morning America” interview last week with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos.

Then, Huckabee dismissed birther conspiracies as “nonsense.”

“If there was any shred of truth to it, Hillary Clinton and her wonderful investigative opposition research machine would have found it and would have used it,” Huckabee told ABC news. “For Republicans to even be bringing it up, I think it’s a waste of energy and time.”

When asked whether he thought it was smart for some Republicans to keep the birth certificate controversy alive, Huckabee responsed: “I’ll leave up to them whether they think it’s smart, I just don’t think it’s completely necessary for us to delve into such extraneous matters.”

And in an interview with ABC’s Terry Moran, Huckabee seemed even more critical of birther talk when presented with poll numbers showing that more than half of all GOP primary voters had some doubts about whether Obama was born in the U.S.

“I think that’s ridiculous,” he said. “There’s a lot of things we need to be talking regarding Barack Obama. But, you know, I find that completely out of the question.”

Huckabee just wrapped up several days of events to promote his book, “A Simple Government” in Iowa this week and plans to head to Texas, South Carolina and several other states over the next few days.

ABC’s Steven Portnoy contributed reporting to this post.

Watch Huckabee’s “Good Morning America” interview last week:

PTImbz*4YWNjYjBlMGUzMGU*ZjExOTkwNjQ*N2VmMTk*YzY5NSZvZj*w Mike Huckabee Falsely Suggests Obama Grew Up In Kenya


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