NPR logo The Nation: Will The Birthers Ever Back Off?


The Nation: Will The Birthers Ever Back Off?

The Nation's Washington editor Chris Hayes talks to Countdown guest host, former Vermont governor Howard Dean, about the "birther" movement within the Republican party. Hayes points out the problem for lawmakers who recently voted for a resolution naming Hawaii as Obama's birthplace but still want to stoke anger within their base. "I will charitably interpret their actions as being cynical as opposed to insane," Hayes notes, saying that these Republicans are caught between mainstream acceptability and the fringe elements of their party. As the party itself shrinks, can the Republicans afford to lose the "birthers," or should they double down on the more radical—but still engaged—elements?