*** UPDATED WITH HUCKPAC RESPONSE AFTER THE JUMP ***
From NBC's Domenico Montanaro and Sarah Blackwill
Mike Huckabee, the former Arkansas governor considering another run for president in 2012, inaccurately claimed on a conservative talk-radio show that President Obama grew up in Kenya.
"[O]ne thing that I do know is his having grown up in Kenya, his view of the Brits, for example, very different than the average American," Huckabee told host Steve Malzberg, the Washington Post reported. (Huckabee is on a multi-state book tour that is taking him to key presidential nominating states.)
Huckabee's claim that President Obama grew up in Kenya is false. President Obama was born in Hawaii and spent part of his youth in Indonesia, not Kenya. The president's biological father was Kenyan, and Obama barely knew him.
Huckabee has said he believes President Obama was born in the United States -- unlike the so-called "Birthers," who believe falsely that the president was born elsewhere. Huckabee reiterated his standard reasoning for that again today.
"The only reason I'm not as confident that there's something about the birth certificate ... is because I know the Clintons well, and believe me they had lots of investigators out on him," Huckabee said, "and I'm convinced if there was anything they could have found on that they would have found it, and I promise they would have used it."
But Huckabee didn't shoot down other conspiracy theories like the president not having health or college records, floated by Malzberg. Here's a partial transcript:
MALZBERG: Don't you think it's fair also to ask him - I know your stance on this - how come we don't have a health record? We don't have a college record? We don't have a birth certif- why Mr. Obama did you spend millions of dollars in courts all over this country to defend against having to present a birth certificate. It's one thing to say, "You've seen it, goodbye. But why go to court and send lawyers to defend against having to show it?" Don't you think we deserve to know more about this man?
HUCKABEE: I would love to know more - what I know is troubling enough. And one thing that I do know is his having grown up in Kenya - his view of the Brits, for example, very different from the average American. When he gave the bust back to [of Winston Churchill] -- of Winston Churchill, yeah. A great insult to the British, but if you think about it - his perspective growing up in Kenya with a Kenyan father and granfather, their view of the Mau Mau Revolution is very different from ours, because he probably grew up hearing that the British were a bunch of imperialists who persecuted his grandfather.
MALZBERG: He despises the West, he despises the Brits, and I think he could take it all out on Israel, and that's why he despises Israel. He's not too thrilled with our history either... Would you say to him or at least ask him in a debate: Why did you go to court and spend millions of dollars on lawyers to prevent from having to show your birth certificate? If you have one, and it's there, why not show it?
HUCKABEE: The only reason I'm not as confident that there's something about the birth certificate, Steve, is because I know the Clintons well, and believe me they had lots of investigators out on him, and I'm convinced if there was anything they could have found on that they would have found it and I promised they would have used it.
*** UPDATE *** HuckPAC Executive Director J. Hogan Gidley says Huckabee "simply misspoke":
“Governor Huckabee simply misspoke when he alluded to President Obama growing up in ‘Kenya.’ The Governor meant to say the President grew up in Indonesia. When the Governor mentioned he wanted to know more about the President, he wasn’t talking about the President’s place of birth - the Governor believes the President was born in Hawaii. The Governor would however like to know more about where President Obama’s liberal policies come from and what else the President plans to do to this country - as do most Americans.”