PEEK

White House Has to Fight Yet Another Batshit Crazy Conspiracy Theory

Relax wingnuts: the Government is not collecting names or asking people to report on one another.

'NOBODY IS COLLECTING NAMES'.... It's a shame yet another conspiracy theory reached the White House briefing room. ABC News' Jake Tapper reports this afternoon:

Asked about Cornyn's letter on Thursday afternoon, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said, "nobody is collecting names."

The blog and tips email was because, Gibbs said, "we have seen, and as I've discussed from this podium, a lot of misinformation around health care reform. Some of it I think spread purposely. We have used on many occasions the Web site to debunk things that are simply not true. We ask people if they have questions about health care reform and about what they're hearing about its affects on them, to let us know and we'd provide them information to show that that wasn't true."

Continued Gibbs: "but nobody is collecting names."

Well, no, of course not. The very idea that the White House would be "collecting names" is about as legitimate as the idea that the president is a not a natural-born citizen. As nutty Republican conspiracy theories go, this was even more headache-inducing than most.

Steve Benen is "blogger in chief" of the popular Washington Monthly online blog, Political Animal. His background includes publishing The Carpetbagger Report, and writing for a variety of publications, including Talking Points Memo, The American Prospect, the Huffington Post, and The Guardian. He has also appeared on NPR's "Talk of the Nation," MSNBC's "Rachel Maddow Show," Air America Radio's "Sam Seder Show," and XM Radio's "POTUS '08."
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