|Rep. Mike Hatfield (R) GA -117|
"At least a dozen lawmakers have removed their names from a proposal in the Georgia House that would require presidential and vice presidential candidates to prove they were born in the country.
Among representatives that removed their names were Jon Burns of Newington, Penny Houston of Nashville, Tom McCall of Elberton, Ann Purcell of Rincon and Ron Stephens of Savannah. All are Republicans.
“It’s just much more in depth than I originally anticipated,” Stephens said of dropping his support for a measure inspired by the “birther” movement, which believes President Barack Obama was not born in the United States.
Sponsor Mark Hatfield, R-Waycross, originally had 93 co-sponsors of House Bill 401. The measure first appeared in an elections subcommittee on Wednesday and is up for debate at the group’s next meeting."
It appears that Rep. Hatfield did have his hands full. The Republicans are deserting his bill at an alarming rate. The number is now up to 23 supporters that have withdrawn.
"Some Georgia lawmakers couldn’t backpedal fast enough Thursday on a “birther” bill supported earlier this week by a majority of House members.
First to block out his name with a heavy black marker on House Bill 401 was John Meadows, chairman of the powerful House Rules Committee.
A steady stream of legislators followed all day. By 5 p.m., at least 23 of the original 93 backers were gone from a proposal requiring presidential and vice presidential candidates prove they were born in the United States. Among them was the bill's lone Democratic supporter, Glenn Baker of Jonesboro.
Seventy sponsors is still a sizable chunk of the 180-member chamber, but is an abrupt about-face from just 48 hours before. Why?"‘Birther' bill losing supporters
[Updated to add the cartoon from the March 4 edition of the AJC by Mike Luckovich]