COMMERCE, MI (AP) - Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney Friday raised the discredited rumor that President Barack Obama was not born in the United States and thus ineligible to be president.

The presumptive GOP nominee, joined for a rally outside Detroit Friday by running mate Paul Ryan, joked that he had been born in a nearby hospital and that "no one's ever asked to see my birth certificate. "

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The president's reelection campaign swiftly responded that Romney was directly enlisting himself in the discredited "birther movement" and that "should give pause to any rational voter," said Obama spokesman Ben LaBolt.

Obama has been dogged throughout his presidency by question about his birthplace. He released a long form copy of his birth certificate last year, showing he was born in Hawaii in 1961.

Romney grew up in Michigan and his father, George Romney was a popular governor of the state.


Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.