Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney made a joke about his birth certificate – and took a subtle shot at his opponent in doing so – at a rally Friday.

Speaking about his roots in Michigan, where has father was governor, he told a Commerce, Mich., crowd, “No one’s ever asked to see my birth certificate.”

“They know that this is the place that we were born and raised.”

It was awkward, if nothing else, for Romney to joke about “birther” conspiracies that dogged President Barack Obama since his 2008 White House run.

The President released his long form birth certificate in 2011.

The Obama campaign quickly responded, saying that with the comment, Romney was embracing the extreme elements in the conservative movement.

A spokesman for Romney said he was “only referencing that Michigan, where he is campaigning today, is the state where he himself was born and raised.”

Romney’s son Matt joked earlier this year about Obama’s birth certificate, referring to Mitt Romney’s tax returns – his own “missing” document controversy:

“I heard that someone suggest that as soon as President Obama releases his grades, and birth certificate, and a long list of things, then maybe he will.”

Romney believes Obama was born in the U.S., saying in 2011 that “the man needs to be taken out of office but his citizenship isn’t the reason why.”

President Obama: U.S. Citizen?

Election 2012:

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Mitt Romney Makes Obama Birth Certificate Joke