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Saturday, November 01, 2008

More Questions We Don't Have Documents to Resolve: Did Obama Go To Columbia College?

There is so much that we are taking on faith with Barack Obama. Unqualified Reservations blog asks a question that has been asked in other places and in different ways. For example, what were Obama's grades at Columbia.

This blogger asks a very basic question: was he even a student there? If so, why don't more people remember this leading contender for President?

I know. I swore that my evil demagogic talents would go unused in this volatile, historic, and deliciously operatic election. And we'll certainly have a fun discussion after the event.

At the moment, though, I find myself tussling with a question I'm not sure anyone has seriously asked. And I just can't resist.

My question is: was Barack Obama ever a student at Columbia? Because here's how one scurrilous compendium of racist smears puts it:

Obama graduated from Columbia College in 1983, and after spending a year in New York, moved to Chicago.

Wayne Allyn Root says, "I don't know a single person at Columbia that knows him, and they all know me. I don't have a classmate who ever knew Barack Obama at Columbia. Ever! ... Nobody recalls him. I'm not exaggerating, I'm not kidding.

Questioner: Were you the exact same class?

Root: Class of '83 political science, pre-law Columbia University. You don't get more exact than that. Never met him in my life, don't know anyone who ever met him. At the class reunion, our 20th reunion five years ago, 20th reunion, who was asked to be the speaker of the class? Me. No one ever heard of Barack! Who was he, and five years ago, nobody even knew who he was... the guy who writes the class notes, who's kind of the, as we say in New York, the macha who knows everybody, has yet to find a person, a human who ever met him. Is that not strange? It's very strange...

When asked about his undergraduate training at Columbia University, The New Times states that Obama "declined repeated requests to talk about his New York years, release his Columbia transcript or identify even a single fellow student, co-worker, roommate or friend from those years."

Many of his classmates don't remember Obama. He's not in the yearbook. Columbia couldn't find a picture of him at school.

What can be said with some certainty is that Mr. Obama lived off campus while at Columbia in 1981-83 and made few friends. Fox News contacted some 400 of his classmates and found no one who remembered him.

Does this ring true for you? Does it even pass the laugh test?

Let's see, his original birth certificate is sealed. His Columbia transcripts are not available. Bill Ayers is just a guy in his neighborhood, but turns out to be more than that. His videotaped tribute to Rashid Khalidi is hidden by the LA Times. He attends his church for 20 years but does not remember ever hearing any racist hate speech coming out of Jeremiah Wright's mouth. Who is this mystery man that so many people are going to be voting for next week?

Unkosified at FreeRepublic has a longer list:

1. Occidental College records — Not released

2. Columbia College records — Not released

3. Columbia Thesis paper — ‘not available’

4. Harvard College records — Not released

5. Selective Service Registration — Not released

6. Medical records — Not released

7. Illinois State Senate schedule — ‘not available’

8. Law practice client list — Not released

9. Certified Copy of original Birth certificate — Not released

10. Embossed, signed, paper Certification of Live Birth — Not released

11. Harvard Law Review articles published — None

12. University of Chicago scholarly articles — None

13. Record of baptism— Not released or ‘not available’

14. Illinois State Senate records—’not available’


Anonymous said...

Anyone can just call Columbia College/University and request that they verify whether Barack Obama or anyone else in fact attended or completed an academic program there. You can apparently do that online, too.

Moneyrunner said...

Anon: Please click on the link to get a more comprehensive explantion of the issue.

Why do not more people remember him being there? Why are so many parts of his past so much of a mystery?

Unknown said...

He may have attended/gotten a degree from the Columbia School of General Studies which is part of the University but not prestigious; it's open to anyone/everyone. Few graduates of SGS go on to Harvard Law, though some get degrees; but with "life experience" that path would certainly be possible, even for a person not politically connected or "owned" by radicals.

What's ODD (if this explanation is true) is that Barry is ashamed of it. Why? It seems like this scenario would bolster his claim to having "overcome difficult circumstances"--much more so than having magically attended a ritzy private school, Columbia College and HLS.

Darcy said...

Very interesting...and depressing at the same time. But thank you for staying on this stuff. I want to know.

Anonymous said...

These gutless anonymous posters need to be banned...