[T]he birther question was never really about citizenship; it was simply a proxy for those who never accepted the president’s legitimacy, for a toxic mix of reasons involving ideology, deep political anger and, most insidious of all, race....Inconceivable? Really?
It is inconceivable that this campaign to portray Mr. Obama as the insidious “other” would have been conducted against a white president.
There was a price to the party for keeping the issue alive; inevitably, it was picked up by a cartoon candidate, Donald Trump, who rode birtherism directly to the prime-time promontories of cable TV. The Republican establishment began to wince as it became increasingly tied to Mr. Trump’s flirtations with racial provocation, and Karl Rove told him to knock it off.Oh! The evil Karl Rove is back... seemingly as a measure of how much more evil the birthers are.