The claim that Barack Obama registered at Occidental College as the Indonesian citizen “Barry Soetoro” was debunked well over a year ago. You probably know this. What you may not know is that American conservatives continue to circulate the story as if it were breaking news. As they move the hoax along, new bits are added here and there to make the hoax seem truthier. The latest addition to the claim is a preface giving the hoax a Snopes(tm) seal of approval:
This information from Occidental College was released TODAY, May 4, 2010. I checked with Snopes and it IS true. He got financial aid as a foreign student. The request for his transcript was released in compliance with an order from the Superior Court of the State of California.
VERY QUIETLY OBAMA’S CITIZENSHIP CASE REACHES THE SUPREME COURT
AP – WASHINGTON D.C. –
In a move certain to fuel the debate over Obama’s qualifications for the presidency, the group “Americans for Freedom of Information” has Released copies of President Obama’s college transcripts from Occidental College . Released today, the transcript school indicates that Obama, under the name Barry Soetoro, received financial aid as a foreign student from Indonesia as an undergraduate. The transcript was released by Occidental College in compliance with a court order in a suit brought by the group in the Superior Court of California. The transcript shows that Obama (Soetoro) applied for financial aid and was awarded a fellowship for foreign students from the Fulbright Foundation Scholarship program. To qualify, for the scholarship, a student must claim foreign citizenship.
This document would seem to provide the smoking gun…
… blah, blah, blah. The AP never issued such a news release, Occidental College has not released Barack Obama’s transcript, and there was no court order to do so. We knew this already. A simple check of the Snopes website further shows that no, Snopes does not affirm these claims. To the contrary, Snopes flatly rejects the claims as unequivocally false.
You probably knew as much. But then, these new words of endorsement at the top of the Obama hoax message aren’t meant for you. They’re meant for people who don’t check facts, who take claims on faith in the appearance of truth, who aren’t part of the reality-based community. It may be that in such circles, the unforgivably foreign birth of Barack Obama will remain a “fact” for years to come.