Obama beats back Trump 'conspiracy theories'
April 15th, 2011
09:00 AM ET
4 years ago

Obama beats back Trump 'conspiracy theories'

Washington (CNN) - Before President Obama left Washington Thursday for three fundraisers in his hometown, he tackled Donald Trump's recent concerns and outlined the road ahead as a candidate for re-election.

In an interview on ABC News, he addressed the on-going zings from the real estate mogul,  who's ramped up his questioning of Obama's birth place in recent months saying, "Over the last two and a half years there's been an effort to go at me in a way that is politically expedient in the short-term for Republicans."

"But it creates, I think, a problem for them when they want to actually run in a general election where most people feel pretty confident the president was born where he says he was, in Hawaii."

The president told ABC's George Stephanopoulos that people may believe "he doesn't have horns," and worry about unemployment or gas prices, but not "conspiracy theories or birth certificates."

And he has an unlikely ally, confirming that Karl Rove agrees that scrutiny over his place of birth is hurting Republicans.

"The truth of the matter is that I think that the vast majority of Americans…Democratic or Republican-really want this election to be about growing the economy, getting control of the deficit…and my suspicion is that anybody who is not addressing those questions is going to be in trouble."

A recent CNN/Opinion Research Corp. poll backs up the president's contention.  According to that survey, three out of four think the president was probably or definitely born in the country.

Admitting that "We have gone through two and a half of the most challenging years that we've seen since the Great Depression," Obama gave a glimmer of what may be heard on the campaign trail by touting his achievements in the White House.

"We have been able to yank this economy out of a very, very deep recession," he said. "We have been able to stabilize the financial system and get the economy to grow again."

"Not only have we now produced over 1.8 million jobs just in the last year, but what we've also been able to do is make society a little fairer, more competitive."

He also trumpeted investing in clean energy, making college more affordable, and changing Don't Ask, Don't Tell, a policy that prevented gay servicemembers from openly serving in the military.

Obama noted ongoing issues like unemployment and "enormous challenges" abroad, including unrest in the Middle East, but declared, "I think I'm equipped to help us finish the job."

And he hit back at critics from the other side of the aisle who support House Budget Committee Chair Paul Ryan's tax plan, stating, "It's not enough to just say, 'I'm going to keep your taxes low and make government small.' We've got to make real choices."

"If we believe that it's unacceptable for our seniors not to be able to go into a nursing home when they need care or children who are poor not to be able to get a good education, if we believe those things…then we've got to make sure that we're paying for it," he continued.

Obama addressed "concern" of American people who "just went through a decade in which the top one percent, the top 1/10 of one percent saw their incomes skyrocket. But for the other 99 percent, things were pretty tough."

Recalling that he grew up in "a society where if you work hard and you're responsible and sometimes you're a little bit lucky, you can achieve that American dream," he said, "I want to make sure that's true for everyone."

Meanwhile, Obama touted his birth place at a fundraiser in Chicago Thursday night:

"I was born in Hawaii. But I became a man here in Chicago. And a lot of the people who are here today, the values, the ideals, the beliefs, my core convictions about what makes America great were forged here," he said.

In 2008, the Obama presidential campaign released a copy of the certificate, saying the serial number was blacked out for concern over Hawaiian procedure. Since then, CNN and many other news organizations and the Annenberg Fact Check Project saw the original with the serial number, an embossed seal and a stamped signature.


Filed under: 2012 • Birthers • Donald Trump • President Obama
soundoff (38 Responses)
  1. ITALIAN NONNO

    Bravo Mr. President,.. keep up the good work,.. you have a conscience, compassion, and integrity,.. something sadly lacking in most politicians these days.

    April 14, 2011 11:48 pm at 11:48 pm |
  2. Desmond

    The USA has a leader of real spiritual class in Barack Obama. But people in the USA with little or no spiritual class cannot be expected to appreciate him. In contrast, this mega-bucks Trump is a real JOKER IN A PACK FULL OF JACKS. "Birther" bandwagon is their "trump" card???!

    April 15, 2011 12:43 am at 12:43 am |
  3. Marry

    Wonder what the GOP/TP have to criticize on these statements and that philosophy…Well, they think of something!

    April 15, 2011 12:58 am at 12:58 am |
  4. Lloyd

    Obama is a fraud, and the bootlicking mainstream media will not be able to give him cover for much longer. Whatever he is hiding - citizenship, college records, religion - is about to be blown wide open now that Trump is digging. Finally, somebody with a sac is asking the tough questions and investigating him. Trump has enough $$ to get to the bottom of this. You liberals must be soiling yourself to think that this sham of a presidency is about to be exposed. If Trump can't do it, then the new election laws in several states that will require the impostor to show his long form birth certificate to run in 2012.

    April 15, 2011 01:04 am at 1:04 am |
  5. Majestic

    Mr. President. Thank you for standing up for me (the little guy). You have my vote in 2012.

    April 15, 2011 01:14 am at 1:14 am |
  6. TomNPitt

    Can the Republicans or any other party, really come up with a candidate who daily speaks about moderation the way this guy does. All the Republicans have to offer are a bunch of sword carrying loud mouths making accusations they can't substantiate. Obama's the only adult in the room. He's the only real person we can ask, or elect to be The President of the United States.

    April 15, 2011 03:36 am at 3:36 am |
  7. cj

    3,960,000 results on just one search engine proves that people do believe in conspiracy theories. The Presidents Birth Cert is a big deal. It is not something you can just wish away. On just one conspiracy forum website there are 14,250 members. On another there are 225,424 members. I could post many more website stats to show you that six figure and 7 figure membership is the norm. TruTV and the History channel both show conspiracy theory programming. The shows do very well.

    April 15, 2011 03:54 am at 3:54 am |
  8. sherriwwName

    The President is right.He certinly IS equipped to handle the job,and get us out of this mess,and he is the ONLY one out there right now,who actually is able to do it right,and protect what little the poor and middle class have left.There is NObody BUT president Obama going to do that for us,and all one needs do,is listen to the" ideas"the GOP/Tp has for all us" little"people,to know we better run from those guys like the devil is chasing us!

    April 15, 2011 04:41 am at 4:41 am |
  9. Charlie in Maine

    Their real problem Mr. President is not that you were born in the bluest of blue states (Hawaii) they know that. Their problem is with where you live now, The White House. The fact that yu living there now makes people of "that" nature uneasy is all the reason I need to vote for you again. God's speed Mr. President full speed ahead.

    April 15, 2011 05:48 am at 5:48 am |
  10. Diana

    Obama is one of the most astute statesman the world has ever seen.
    Every country wishes they had their own Obama.
    Thank you for electing this man.

    April 15, 2011 07:39 am at 7:39 am |
  11. Jeff from Va

    Please get off this "Top 2%", do your job, you said you would creat job, get to work. Open up the oil drilling back in the USA, gas prices keep going up, people aren't going to travel, vacation. Our government needs to learn to work with a budget, in my house we pay our bills 1st, then use the extra to, buy clothes, eat out now and, give to the needy and charities. LIke it or not, we have to get our spending under control, saving 5 million here 10 million there is good, but that is a drop in the bucket to what we owe. Please, both sides, stop playing games, and get to some serious debit reduction.

    April 15, 2011 07:48 am at 7:48 am |
  12. Name king

    These repugs and this birthed issues,'while they deflect blame fro
    These oil companies that are taking tillions from the American economy, dragging our economy back into a depression, why is these repugs always deflection notice off the things that are ravishing our economy, and pushing um factual rederic that are proven to
    Time and time again, every time the dems tries to tax these oil companies to keep some of the trillions of dollars in this country,

    April 15, 2011 07:55 am at 7:55 am |
  13. TomInRochNY

    Exactly, Mr. President. I feel you want to help, even if you aren't as effective as I'd like. But, I don't get the feeling Rs want to help the middle class. Why wait for the money to trickle down? How about giving those tax cuts to us so we're able to buy more, not give it to the rich in hopes that they will tirckle down on us. Or, better yet, change the tax laws so it isn't as profitable to outsource jobs to Asia. The more jobs we have the more money we can make. The more money we make the more the economy will recover. If this continues as is we won't be able to buy anything from China no matter how cheap it is.

    April 15, 2011 08:05 am at 8:05 am |
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