No person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President; neither shall any Person be eligible to that Office who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty-five Years, and been fourteen Years a Resident within the United States.
As Chris Kelly points out, that rules out anyone born in a state that was not yet a state when the Constitution was adopted. So yes, it rules out Obama. And neither were Bill Clinton, Ronald Reagan, Jimmy Carter, Gerald Ford, Richard Nixon, Lyndon Johnson, Dwight Eisenhower, Ulysses Grant, William McKinley, James Garfield, William Howard Taft, Harry Truman, Herbert Hoover, etc etc etc. (Ah, the joy of pedantry!)
Kelly also claims that “No person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President…” means that only those in existence at the time of the Constitution’s adoption can be President. He gets this by taking “at the time of the Adoption…” to modify ‘person’ or ‘citizen’ rather than ‘state’. This reading seems less natural to me, and also incompatible with the first one.
Still, fun with literal-mindedness. And yet another strike against the Originalists. What’s not to like? (Thanks Troy!)