The bizarre happenings of the Republican Party continue to amuse, bemuse and sometimes shock me. A party that was a formidable election machine, defining global politics along the way, in the 1980s now sees some of its grassroots support slip ever further away from the acceptable centre ground.
Unfortunately rumblings about President Obama's legitimacy to the presidency - which have been doing the rounds on right-wing talk radio, internet chat rooms and blogs - have now made their way into the political mainstream.
The Arizona state legislature has passed a bill requiring presidential candidates to present either a "long-form birth certificate or two or more other permitted documents, including an early baptismal certificate, circumcision certificate, hospital birth record, postpartum medical record signed by the person who delivered the child or an early census record" in order to get on the ballot.
The important point here is that a short-form Hawaii birth certificate, like the one President Obama has released is not enough. In one cynical step a law making legislature has overtly targeted the legitimacy of their head of state and commander in chief in a way that should shock any right-minded person.
This goes way beyond political knock-about or dirty tricks. This is racist and the GOP needs to stamp this out straight away if they want any hope of putting up a fight in the 2016, let alone next year's, presidential election.