Gibbs was asked about a new poll from new poll (PDF) by Public Policy Polling which found that just 53 percent of likely voters in Virginia believe Mr. Obama was born in the United States.
Roughly one quarter responded that they are "not sure" in the poll. Another quarter responded that the president was not born in the United States.
An important note: The pollsters in this survey used a method called robo-calling, in which actual human beings are not asking the questions. Instead, a recording poses the question and respondents are asked to simply to press, for example, 1, 2 or 3 on their phones to respond. CBS News does not believe these sorts of polls have the same reliability as traditional polls. We are mentioning this one here only because a question about it prompted Gibbs' comments.
Asked if he feels the finding is "amazing," Gibbs responded, "I mean it is and it isn't."
"I've said this before," Gibbs continued, as CBS News White House correspondent Mark Knoller reports. "If I had DNA, I'm entirely sure that a sizeable number of people would not believe it. They've seen a birth certificate. It's on the Internet. It's been there for a year and a half. The State of Hawaii, the 50th state in the great United States of America, has said it's true."
Gibbs then said "you couldn't sell [the birther] script in Hollywood," prompting a reporter to ask if the press secretary had been to the movies lately.
"Yeah," he responded. "And tell me if you've heard one that's this totally crazy: A pregnant woman leaves her home to go overseas to have a child, who there's not a passport for, in cahoots with somebody…to smuggle that child that previously doesn't exist on a government roll somewhere back into the country. And [she] has the amazing foresight to place birth announcements in the Hawaii newspapers…so that some kid named Barack Obama could run for president 46 and a half years later? You couldn't sell that to the WB."
(For the record, the WB television network was shut down in 2006 and replaced by The CBS co-owned CW Television Network; it was relauched last year as an online network.)