Forwarded email quotes a road-weary Barack Obama saying he has campaigned (or plans to campaign) in 'all 57 states,' and claims there are exactly fifty-seven ISLAMIC states in the world.
Description: Email rumor / Viral quote
Circulating since: June 2008
Status: Partly true (see details below)
Email text contributed by Ted B., June 12, 2008:
From: Subject: FW: think about this
You are aware, probably, that Barack Obama lost his bearings recently and said that he was going to campaign in all 57 states. You heard this? And everybody chalked it up to, 'Well, he's tired.'
Barack Obama says he's gonna go out and campaign in 57 states, he was just tired, you know, it's been such a long campaign, he's been so many places, he probably thinks there are 57 states. Well, I have here a printout from a website called the International Humanist and Ethical Union. And here is how the second paragraph of an article on that website begins. 'Every year from 1999 to 2005 the organization of the Islamic conference representing the 57 Islamic states presented a resolution to the United Nations commission on human rights called combating.' And the title of the piece here is, 'How the Islamic states dominate the UN human rights council,' and there are 57 of them.
Obama said he's going to campaign in 57 states, and it turns out that there are 57 Islamic states. There are 57 Islamic states. ; ; So did Obama just lose his bearings, or was this a more telling slip, ladies and gentlemen?
DO ALL AMERICANS A FAVOR AND FORWARD THIS TO EVERYONE ON YOUR EMAIL LIST..... With our country at odds with the Muslems, what will happen if Obama is one? Think and pray before voting!
Analysis: It's true that during a May 9, 2008 campaign stop in Oregon, Barack Obama said he had visited 57 states. The exact quote, as transcribed in the LA Times "Top of the Ticket" blog (and viewable on YouTube), went as follows:
"It is wonderful to be back in Oregon," Obama said. "Over the last 15 months, we’ve traveled to every corner of the United States. I’ve now been in 57 states? I think one left to go. Alaska and Hawaii, I was not allowed to go to even though I really wanted to visit, but my staff would not justify it."Not to make excuses for the gaffe, but it's clear from the context that the candidate intended to say he had been in 47 (or perhaps 48) states, excluding Alaska and Hawaii. Obama acknowledged the mistake later that same day by poking fun at his own "numeracy problem."
The rest of this forwarded email can be taken as either a joke or a smear, depending on how amusing one finds yet another reference to Obama's rumored secret adherence to the Muslim faith.
Is it true there are exactly 57 Islamic states in the world? That depends on how you're counting. There are, as of this writing, exactly 57 member states in the above-mentioned Organization of the Islamic Conference, which roughly coincides with the number of countries currently boasting a Muslim majority population (estimates range from 55 to 57). But if the criterion for "Islamic state" is full-blown Muslim rule, the number is significantly smaller than 57.
Finally, is Barack Obama a covert Muslim? If you have to ask, you haven't been paying attention.
Sources and further reading:
Obama Claims He's Visited 57 States
Barack Obama Wants to Be President of These 57 United States
LA Times "Top of the Ticket" blog, 9 May 2008
Organization of the Islamic Conference
Majority Muslim Countries
Last updated: 07/16/08