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State Senate Gives Preliminary Approval to "Birther" Bill. Welcome to Arizona, the "Meth Lab of Democracy"

The Arizona Senate gave preliminary approval to the "Birther" bill, which would require any presidential candidate to prove to state election officials that they are U.S. citizens, old enough to hold office, and meet residency requirements -- despite each of these things already being federal requirements to land the job.

The bill already has failed in the Arizona Legislature twice -- once last year and once in the Senate Judiciary Committee earlier this year. However, thanks to a strike-everything amendment, it's found its way back onto the plates of state legislators.

This version is slightly different -- some GOP legislators thought the original bill, which required a long-form birth certificate to prove a candidate's citizenship, is a little over the top.

We'd argue the whole damn bill is over the top, considering it's in direct response to the repeatedly debunked controversy over President Barack Obama's citizenship and the right-wing conspiracy theorist "birther" movement.

The amended version of the bill offers some alternatives to a long-form birth certificate, including a baptismal or circumcision certificate, a hospital birth record, a postpartum medical record, or an early census record.

If a candidate can't provide any of these items, a notarized affidavit of two or more people who witnessed the candidate's birth would be satisfactory.

The bill now is well on its way to the desk of Governor Jan Brewer, who probably sign it (she may not be as big a nut at the legislators who supported this bill, but she's afraid of them). This, of course, will further Arizona's reputation as what Daily Show host Jon Stewart calls the "meth lab of democracy."


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