In the last few weeks, The Birthers, those folks who don't think Obama was born in the United States and thus ineligible to be President, have gotten their views in the traditional media like CNN and MSNBC. Even though the State of Hawaii has asserted that there is a valid birth certificate and the local newspaper had a birth announcement back in 1960, (see above) for some reason The Birthers are not convinced.
Let's get something straight. The only reason this is an issue is because we have a black president. The people pushing this "story" can't abide the fact that the President of the United States is a black man. Now of course they know they can't say that out loud in polite company so they glom on to wild conspiracies. It is similar to issues last year during the campaign when people insisted, in the face of evidence to the contrary, that Obama was Muslim. It's a way to point out that Obama is different, that he's not like us and worthy to govern without having to say the "I don't want a black person as president."
Unfortunately for the Republicans, the base of their support has dwindled down to the cranks, crazy, and racists. Their supporters actually believe this stuff. So even though most elected Republicans know the Birther issues are completely unfounded, they can't come out and say that or they will piss off half their supporters. So Republicans are caught between a rock and a hard place. They either look crazy to most of the electorate for not repudiating this easily debunked claim or they tell a large percentage of their hardcore supporters that they are crazy. The irony is delicious and a lot of fun to watch. Couldn't happen to a better bunch of guys.