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Judge orders Obama to appear in court for ‘birther’ suit

By Chuck Williams, McClatchy Newspapers –

COLUMBUS, Ga. — A Georgia judge has ordered President Barack Obama to appear in court in Atlanta Thursday for a hearing on a complaint that says Obama isn’t a natural-born citizen and can’t be president.

Orly Taitz, the California attorney who brought the legal challenge to Obama’s name on the March Georgia presidential primary ballot, says this is what she has been working for over the last three years.

“This will be 100 times bigger than Watergate,” she said Saturday morning, referring to the scandal that brought down President Richard Nixon in 1974.

“There are high ranking judges and federal officials who are involved in this cover up. The ramifications of this trial will be enormous.”

Taitz said she expects the president’s legal team to fight his appearance in the Georgia court.

“But he’s in a catch-22,” she said. “If he is appealing this decision, then he looks guilty. The whole nation understands this man is a fraud.”

Taitz has led the “birther” movement that insists Obama is not a natural-born U.S. citizen. She is also familiar to Georgia courts.

Taitz represented two soldiers in U.S. District Court in Columbus who sought to avoid deployment by arguing Obama wasn’t the commander-in-chief because he wasn’t eligible to be president.

Federal Judge Clay Land warned Taitz against filing a frivolous suit, then fined her $20,000 after he denied the second claim.

This is one of many such lawsuits that have been filed across the country, so far without success.

A Georgia resident made the complaint, which is intended to keep Obama’s name off the state’s ballot in the March presidential primary.

The hearing is set for Thursday before an administrative judge. Deputy Chief Judge Michael Malihi on Friday denied a motion by the president’s lawyer to quash a subpoena that requires Obama to show up.

The Office of State Administrative Hearings handles disputes between the public and state agencies.

For example, if the state Department of Revenue wants to revoke a business owner’s alcohol license, the owner could appeal to the Office of State Administrative Hearings.

It also handles ballot disputes.

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