Legislation that requires presidential candidates to prove they are natural born American citizens before their names can appear on the Arizona ballot was vetoed by the state’s Republican governor on Monday.
“I never imagined being presented with a bill that could require candidates for President of the greatest and most powerful nation on earth to submit their ‘early baptismal or circumcision certificates,'” Governor Jan Brewer said. “This is a bridge too far. This measure creates significant new problems while failing to do anything constructive for Arizona.”
The bill, H.B. 2177, would have required presidential candidates to submit a certified copy of their birth certificate that includes their date and place of birth, the names of their mother and father, and the name of the hospital they were born at. In addition, candidates could provide other documents, early baptismal or circumcision certificates, to prove they were natural born citizens.
The bill was sponsored by State Rep. Carl Seel, who recently met with billionaire real estate mogul and potential Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump to discuss the legislation. Trump says he has doubts that Obama is a natural born citizen.
“This bill is about the integrity of our elections,” Seel said.
The Arizona Senate passed the bill in a party-line vote of 20 to 9, with Republicans backing the bill, and was approved by the state House in a 40-16 vote.