Barack Obama Said He Was Campaigning in “57 States”—and There are 57 Islamic States!-Truth! & Fiction!


Summary of eRumor:

Presidential candidate senator Barack Obama stated that he was going to campaign in all 57 states.  The writer of the email says that “organization of the Islamic conference” represents 57 Islamic states.  In other words, there are 57 Islamic states and perhaps Obama’s slip of the tongue was a telling one.

The Truth:

The part about Obama referencing “57 states” is true, but the quote is slightly different than presented in the eRumor.

He did not say he was going to campaign in 57 states but that he already had.

It was at a campaign appearance in Beaverton, Oregon, on May 9, 2008.  Obama said, “It is just wonderful to be back in Oregon. And 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.”  His campaign said it was obviously a mistake.  Nobody believed that he really thought there were 57 states.

It’s a stretch to say that he was referring to “57” Islamic states, but it may not be relevant because it depends on what the definition is of an Islamic state.  There are countries where Islam is not only the official religion but the rule of law as well.  There are others that are secular states but where Islam has a strong presence.  The eRumor references the Organization of The Islamic Conference, which, as of this writing, does have a membership of 57 countries who have enough of a presence of Islam in them to want their interests represented.  For example, Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Central African Republic, and the Turkish Cypriot state are not members of the Organization of The Islamic Conference, but are listed as “observers.”

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Updated 6/21/08

A real example of the eRumor as it has appeared on the Internet:

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.” It’s been such a long campaign, he’s been so many places, etc. etc.

Well, I have here a printout from a website called the International Humanist and Ethical Union. And right in front of me I am reading and article entitled “How the Islamic states dominate the UN human rights council.” I look at the second paraagraph and do a double take. It says:
Every year from 1999 to 2005 the organization of the Islamic conference representing the 57 Islamic states has presented a resolution to the United Nations commission on human rights called combating. ”

There are 57 Islamic states .

Helloooo, everyone! Let me say it again: there are 57 ISLAMIC states!!!!

OK. Let me review. Obama said he’s going to campaign in 57 states, and now I learn that there are 57 Islamic states.

Ladies and gentlemen, I don’t know about you, but now I cannot help but wonder if that slip of Obama’s about the number of states in the United States was a far more telling slip than it is being credited as.