Oh, those skeptical Utahns.
One-third of Beehive State residents believe President Barack Obama is not a citizen of the United States, or they don't know if he is or not, a new poll shows.
But two-thirds of Utahns do believe Obama was born in Hawaii in 1961, is a citizen and is qualified to be president of the United States, pollster Dan Jones & Associates found in a new survey conducted for the Deseret News and KSL-TV.
Jones found that 23 percent of Utahns don't know about the conditions of Obama's birth.
Nine percent said they definitely or somewhat believe that he was not born in the U.S., and so under the Constitution can't be president.
Sixty-seven percent of Utahns accept the evidence that Obama was born in Hawaii on Aug. 4, 1961, and as such is constitutionally qualified.
Jones polled 402 adults last week, the survey having a margin of error of plus or minus 5 percent.
"Yes, he was born here," said Utah Republican Party Chairman Dave Hansen.
His advice to the so-called "birthers" — those who are heating up the Web and heckling congressmen's town hall meetings over Obama's birth issue: "There are important issues to criticize President Obama and his administration on," said Hansen. "Issues that are critical to the future of this country."
In other words, drop the Obama birthplace stuff and look to federal spending, health insurance and other matters.
As might be expected, whether you believe Obama was born in Hawaii — or born in Kenya (his biological father's home) or Indonesia (his stepfather's home) or somewhere else outside of the United States — breaks out somewhat along political lines, Jones found.
While only 9 percent of Utahns overall don't believe the president was born in the United States, 13 percent of Utah Republicans say he wasn't born here.
Seventeen percent of "strong Republicans" say he wasn't born here.
And 18 percent of those who said they are "very conservative" claim he wasn't born here, Jones found.
Eighty-nine percent of Utah Democrats say Obama is a born American; 69 percent of political independents believe so.
Besides being more Republican, Jones found that those who don't believe Obama was born in the United States, or don't know, are middle-aged, lower-income and haven't gone to college.
"I admit I haven't looked into the issue much," said Hansen.
And he doesn't know how much longer the issue will carry on. But he believes it is time to move on with more important matters.
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