Calls for Obama's academic records blasted as 'nonsense'
April 28th, 2011
02:33 PM ET
4 years ago

Calls for Obama's academic records blasted as 'nonsense'

Washington (CNN) – Senior White House adviser Valerie Jarrett referred to calls for the president to release his academic records as "nonsense" Thursday.

The suggested disclosure came Wednesday from real estate mogul Donald Trump after the so-called "birther" debate caused the president to release the long-form version of his birth certificate.

Standing on a tarmac Wednesday in New Hampshire, Trump said "word is he (Obama) wasn't a very good student."

"I'd like to know how does he get into Harvard, how does he get into Columbia if he isn't a very good student," Trump said.

But Jarrett dismissed the remark Thursday.

"We know this is nonsense," Jarrett said on SiriusXM Radio's The Joe Madison Show. "He's almost 50 years old and he's president of the United States and I don't think anybody would debate his intelligence and so now we need to get serious."

Jarrett's foray into the conversation follows CBS anchor Bob Schieffer's accusation that Trump's comments are racist.

"That's just code for saying he got into law school because he's black," Schieffer said on the CBS Evening News Wednesday. "This is an ugly strain of racism that's running through this whole thing."


Filed under: Donald Trump • President Obama • Valerie Jarrett
soundoff (273 Responses)
  1. OneMoreTime

    Bob Schieffer is the epitome of someone "comfortable in his own skin". He doesn't have to prove anything to
    anybody, and has the guts to state what is absolutely true, fearing no one, and doing his job as so many
    used to do in his business. We have too many wimpheads now who seem to worship money and the "slime"
    stories, This is what Fox News is based on, manipulation of the truth, and outright lies. The younger
    journalists could take a great lesson from Bob Schieffer. His career is one to be envied and admired and he
    walks away with his head held high and his integrity in tact, and he earned the "old fashioned way".

    April 28, 2011 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  2. Marc

    "That's just code for saying he got into law school because he's black"

    Nail on head. As an AA, I said I would stop watching The Apprentice as soon as I heard Trump say that, and I know that I never give him another dime of my mony on anything he pitches.

    April 28, 2011 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  3. rdm

    How annoying!!! Doesn't he have anything else to do? He's like a little kid defying his parents. I seriously hope Mr. President does not give in this time!

    April 28, 2011 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  4. Lou

    "That's just code for saying he got into law school because he's black," Schieffer said on the CBS Evening News Wednesday. "This is an ugly strain of racism that's running through this whole thing."

    Nuff said.

    April 28, 2011 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  5. blake

    Please tell me again exactly what is racist about requesting someone's academic records? I grow weary of the Democrats playing the race card anytime they get confronted with something they don't like.

    When you run for president of the U.S. (and certainly if elected) everything about you becomes public information. Don't run if you don't like that.

    April 28, 2011 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  6. nick p.

    i have been saying that from the moment he was elected and repukes were talking about taking their country back!

    April 28, 2011 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  7. Kim

    What a disgusting man. He's blowin' all the dog-whistles. He's no better than Haley Barbour. Absolutely pathetic.

    I personally think he resents Obama because the President is actually a self-made success story – whereas trump is a silver-spooner that is where he's at because of his father and grandfather – he got his money the old fashioned way, he inherited it. I have zero respect for trump and his despicable games. I wish the media would call it and stop giving this man publicity. He's a blatant racist. How about assuming that a black reporter was naturally an Obama supporter? Trump reeks to high heaven.

    April 28, 2011 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  8. Clt

    I heard now they are accusing the President of being the one playing the "race card". When all of the questions are a result of the fact that certain people still can't believe he won the election. You don't graduate Magna Cum Laude from Harvard with Affirmative action. That may get a person in, not that it did him, but it still doesn't help you study and get A's. He was also elected to be the president of the Harvard Law review which the other law students would not have done if he wasn't excelling. Donald Trump is the one that got into his now closed military school and his colleges as a "legacy baby" (affirmative action for rich white men).

    April 28, 2011 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  9. HL

    Since Obama has repeatedly been annointed a genius by the press, and we're all sure it's true, why not release the transcripts?

    April 28, 2011 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  10. M

    No one really cares what Trump thinks; he'll get trounced.

    April 28, 2011 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  11. Mary

    Is there no shame left. What has this country come to that this obviously bigoted, arogant buffoon even garners air time with this nonsense. It makes me ashamed...we are becoming the laughing stock of the world. God save us all if this man becomes our next President.

    April 28, 2011 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  12. Sniffit

    "Calls for Obama's academic records blasted as 'nonsense'"

    By almost everyone EXCEPT the so-called "liberal 'news' media."

    April 28, 2011 03:39 pm at 3:39 pm |
  13. living in america

    Wow I just saw The Donald report card. Chester on his head was a "B" student whereas Donald took remedial classes. Chester is attacking my leg. Get, get, away from me. Stop biting my leg, stop, shooo, get away. Help, help.I 'm bleeding call an ambulance.

    April 28, 2011 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  14. The Art of the Liar

    Schieffer is right. Just because no one is calling the President n – _ _ – r to his face doesn't mean that racial insecurity, innuedo and some fantasized sense of racial intellectual superiority of [SOME] whites isn't at the root of all this birther BS.

    Trump is an exagerator because in his twisted mind, boasts mean something. Trump is a liar. Trump told America that the birth certificate was "missing". Well, it sure turned up yesterday, you LYING, sack of excrement.

    Trump didn't go to "Wharton". Wharton is the U of Penn's BUSINESS SCHOOL where graduates recieve MBAs. Trump DOES NOT have an MBA. He has an undergraduate business degree from the U of Pennsylvania.

    Trump wants to talk about grades? He couldn't get into HBS (Harvard Business School), CBS (Columbia Business School), or Wharton. This DISPITE all the string's he father, Fred Trump pulled. Stanford, Haas, U of Chicago wouldn't touch him.

    He is wealthy because he gambled big with other people's money and got lucky. When he didn't get lucky, he filed for bankrupcty or defaulted on his loans. Trump is not rich because he is smart. He is rich because he was lucky and the son of a man who could stake him for $50M+ to start out with. Bill Gates is rich because he is smart, Warren Buffet is rich because he's smart. Not Donald Trump

    April 28, 2011 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  15. beth60

    No one ever demanded to see Bush's academic records....

    April 28, 2011 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  16. Gerald

    He got into Harvard as a diversity candidate, go ahead and call me a racist because Obama is the one that said it.

    April 28, 2011 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  17. Erick Highum

    The President is being treated like a leader that was not elected to the highest office in the land, in a free and fair election. And the Republicans continue to find ways to question his legitimacy. They act as if he has to prove to them that he is worthy of this office, ehen in fact 69 million voters cast their ballots for President Obama in 2008. The legislative strategy in many states controlled by Republicans is exactly that same now, question the legitimacy of the voters, by making them get a picture ID card in order to vote, all under the ruse that there is "fraud" at the ballot box. Basically the Republican strategy boils down to questioning the legitimacy of the voters that vote for candidates that beat the R's in elections, and then once elected their strategy is to deligitimize the officeholder. This is so destructive to our democratic form of government, in that other nations look to us as a model of democracy, and political stability.

    April 28, 2011 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  18. TJ

    Donald Trump is an idiot, no doubt about it. But to call this racist???? Come on, I am so sick of the race card being pulled. This has nothing to do with Obamas race no matter how hard someone tries to make it that way. Give it up.

    April 28, 2011 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  19. Rosslaw

    How did he become Editor of the Harvard Law Review? Generally considered to be the most prestigious position that can be held by any law student in the United States, he did not get it because, unlike Trump, his daddy did not hand over a NYC real estate business to him. Also, Obama's hair is not only real, but its his.

    April 28, 2011 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  20. Sarah Palin does not speak for me in Ohio

    Mr. Trump probably got into all his schools due to his father's donations to their endowment funds. But as long as he keeps making all his silly and wasteful accusations, the GOP far right base will be enamored with conspiracy theories.

    April 28, 2011 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  21. Consider This...

    I'm ashamed of what is going on in the country I love.
    I guess we haven't really come very far after all.
    Sad, very sad.

    April 28, 2011 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  22. Richard

    Trump is the kind of person who will say anything to further his lot in life. I can't imagine Americans voting for such a womanizer. A man who made his money with the help of his father, who bankrolled him. Trump says he is worth much more than people think he is worth. Just think, Bill Gates started with his brain and has become the richest man in the world, at least for a few years. Trump on the other hand has become a commercial for hair shampoo.

    April 28, 2011 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  23. juliei4

    At last someone calling it what it is – the continuous personal attacks on this president are racially motivated. I know a lot of the GOP genuinely oppose some of the president's policies, but when the far right won't accept facts as facts and continue to see lies as truth without questioning them, there has to be a reason. Either they are really dumb – or they can't accept the fact that an African American won the presidency. Somehow they have to delegitimize him because they just can't stand it. I campaigned for Obama in the last election and I heard plenty of "I will never vote for a black for president." Fortunately, the majority of American voters are not like that.

    April 28, 2011 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  24. Tim

    The whole idea that he wasn’t qualified to be at Harvard when he graduated with honors and was the president of the Harvard Law review is asinine! That is just what Donald Trump is…ASININE! Hey Donald Duck, we are still awaiting your financials, once you pull your head out! All that supposed money and he still can’t get a decent comb over!

    April 28, 2011 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  25. Howard

    Now that Obama got away with avoiding transparency, or accountability, by simply insulting, shaming, and ridiculing anybody who has the audacity to question him, he can get away with anything ... and, everybody had better rubber stamp whatever he does, or says, with a smile of approval on their face ... or, Obama ... and his blogging / media 'Brown Shirts" ... will turn them into pariahs. This pompus, arrogant President thinks of himself as above reproach. He and his worshipers simply have to act indignant, or scream Racist, in order to neutralize any and all opposition.

    April 28, 2011 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
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