It's Time to Require Birth Certificates and Tax Disclosures to Run for President
Dear Lawmakers in Congress and the State Legislatures,
It's time to pass a bill called "The Presidential Eligibility and Transparency Act." It would require the submission of a valid US Birth Certificate and the disclosure of Federal Tax Returns upon submitting Federal Election Commission Form 2- Statement of Candidacy for all persons who wish to have their name listed on each state's ballot to be elected President of the United States, effective for the 2020 election. It's important that we verify that the people running for President are qualified and free from conflicts of interest that would prevent them from serving in good faith. This measure will not change the eligibility requirements as outlined in Article 2, Section 1 of the U.S. Constitution.
Also, a president should be required to enter all their assets and businesses into a blind trust to be operated by an independent third party or else release their taxes annually as long as they serve if they want to have their names listed on the ballot for re-election. This requirement would assure the public they are not using the office to enrich themselves and don't have business dealings that conflict with the interests of the United States.
As President, their interests and the people's interests are inextricably linked, and their business dealings are a matter of public concern. If someone does not wish to be transparent, or if they have not operated in full compliance with U.S. laws, or have dealings with adversaries of our nation, they shouldn't be running our economy. It is not enough to merely accept their word in this arena. As Ronald Regan once said, paraphrasing an old Russian proverb, "Trust, but verify." This non-partisan issue will apply to all candidates, of all parties, and will discourage unserious and lesser known candidates, who are not ready and willing to serve, from running for President as a spectacle to achieve notoriety or burnish their credentials.
This measure would go a long way to assure the people of the United States that the President is ready and qualified to lead our country. It would silence the lingering doubts that undermined our 44th President and are threatening to undermine our 45th. We have been well-served by the assumption of citizenship by birth and the voluntary disclosure of tax documents for decades. These traditions have waned, but the consequence of them remain a crucial foundation for legitimizing the person who holds the highest office in our land.
If the Congress of the United States will not pass such an essential law, individual states can pass a law that demands these disclosures of all candidates as a requirement to be listed on state ballots, which determines electors to the Electoral College. We can do this now, before January 20, 2017, with our current Congress, so it cannot be undone by Presidential action. Every citizen should want to put to bed the notion that our president isn't fully qualified and able to serve in the capacity of President. If only one state passes this requirement, as a barrier to being listed on state ballots, California for example, it would be enough to prevent ineligible and duplicitous candidates from winning its electoral votes in the 2020 election.
Please share this and call your Congressional and State Representatives to demand this action.