October 24th, 2012
01:30 PM ET
1 year ago

Trump's new charity drive

(CNN) – In a much-hyped announcement, real estate mogul and reality television star Donald Trump pulled yet another flashy move on Wednesday offering a monetary incentive in exchange for private information from President Barack Obama's past.

Trump, in a stunt designed to draw media attention and set afire the conservative blogosphere, said he would donate $5 million to charity if the president released his college records and passport applications.

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"I have a deal for the president, a deal that I don't believe he can refuse, and I hope he doesn't. If Barack Obama opens up and gives his college records and applications and if he gives his passport applications and records, I will give to a charity of his choice - inner city children in Chicago, American Cancer Society, AIDS research, anything he wants–a check immediately for $5 million," Trump said.

He added that the check will be written "within one hour" of the documents' release and set a deadline of 5 p.m. on October 31, one week before Election Day…and also right as children are heading out the door to begin trick or treating on Halloween.

"Frankly it's a check that I very much want to write," he said. "I absolutely would be the most happy of all if I did in fact make this contribution through the president to the charities."

Photos: Donald Trump's empire

In an interview set to air Wednesday night on CNN's "Piers Morgan Tonight," Trump argued his offer wasn't a publicity stunt and further challenged the president.

"If there's nothing wrong with his applications – if everything's fine, why wouldn't he do it to pick up $5 million for a charity?" Trump asked. "I think that would be outrageous, personally."

This isn't the first time Trump has called for Obama to make public such records. The conservative, who flirted with a presidential bid last year, has long been at the steering wheel for the so-called birther movement, questioning the president's place of birth.

Last year, Obama released his long-form birth certificate from Hawaii to quell speculation that he was not a U.S. citizen and may be constitutionally ineligible to serve as president. He has previously released a certification of live birth during the 2008 campaign. Both documents show that he was born in a Hawaii hospital on August 4, 1961. Contemporaneously published newspaper announcements also noted the birth in the Aloha State.

In his announcement, Trump took credit for last year's release of the certificate.

"I am very honored to have gotten him to release his long form birth certificate, or whatever it may be," he said.

Trump has said before he wants to see Obama's college records, saying the documents contain students' place of birth.

"I'd like to see what he said. It would be very interesting. I don't care what his marks were. I don't care if he had good marks, I'd just like to see 'place of birth'," Trump said in June at the North Carolina state Republican convention.

Asked about Trump's announcement, David Plouffe, a senior adviser to the president, told reporters on a campaign bus to "direct those questions to Boston because Donald Trump is Mitt Romney's biggest supporter so he owns everything he says."

CNN's Wolf Blitzer held Trump to account on "The Situation Room" in a May interview, as Trump continued to maintain that "a lot of people do not think" the live-birth certificate was "authentic" a year after the document was released. Trump also declined to offer names of experts in agreement with him.

The millionaire maintained in the interview that Obama's birthplace is a matter of opinion, rather than fact.

"Everybody's entitled to your opinion," he said. "You know my opinion and you know his opinion and that's fine. We're entitled – as he said yesterday in the airplane – we're all entitled to our opinions and he's entitled to have his opinion. I don't happen to share that opinion, it's wonderful."

Confronted with 1961 newspaper announcements of Obama's birth, Trump accused Blitzer of defending Obama. Trump then alleged that the practice of filing U.S. birth announcements for an overseas birth was commonplace and done for "the benefits of being so-called born in this country," though he offered no evidence.

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Filed under: 2012 • Birthers • Donald Trump • President Obama
soundoff (318 Responses)
  1. Not this time

    Yes Donald, we know that even if he released them, you would do the same as you did with the birth certificate.. you would claim in was fake... Donald there are only two things in this world that we know to be fake... Your Hair and your Claims.

    October 24, 2012 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  2. uS citizen

    Donald Trump made the idiot of the year

    October 24, 2012 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  3. Woman In California

    Take that offer munkey and put it towards asking Willard for 10 FULL years of tax returns. The country would be far more interested in that.

    October 24, 2012 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  4. Cole

    I don't know about anybody else but is this even legal?

    October 24, 2012 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  5. Grady

    Donald, I would ask you to just go away...but you are the GOP's worst enemy...Continue dishing out the birther balderdash...you may have helped make up the minds of many independant and undecided voters.

    October 24, 2012 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  6. Marc-Queens,NY

    Tell Mr. Trump to shut his big fluffy mouth....He couldn't even build us a BAR in Jones Beach...Get Romulyn to show us his tax returns....shut up, and sell real estate deals...thanks for your 2 cents.

    October 24, 2012 03:16 pm at 3:16 pm |
  7. Dannytelevision

    Trump is a disgusting creep. He will probably squirm out of his offer.
    Send him back to Canada!

    October 24, 2012 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  8. fintastic

    Oh, the Donald....... yawn...

    October 24, 2012 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  9. Lee Ann

    This man discussed me!...enough said.

    October 24, 2012 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  10. Albert

    This is the bombshell? First the e-mail then this lame duck. Man, news is sloooooooooooooooow, today. This folks are desperate.

    October 24, 2012 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  11. Wale

    I would encourage president Obama to challenge this man called Trum to "Shut up". I will advice he raise he double the charity check he is willing to write. The president should then ask for Romney release his past 5 years tax return.

    October 24, 2012 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  12. dreamer96

    How can you take anyone seriously, when they have that bad of a hair piece...it looks like a dead cat lying on his head....

    October 24, 2012 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  13. Sean

    Is this guy a secret democrat? I think he's in love with Obama; I see a school girls obsessive crush blossoming. nice!

    October 24, 2012 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  14. Lydia

    Trump, as usual, is a bag of wind. He's either going to say that Barack and Michelle Obama had at one time considered getting a divorce or some other stupid story. How about being more concerned about the state of the economy, the high unemployment rate, the terrorists in the Middle East, etc. instead of promoting gossip?

    October 24, 2012 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  15. Joann

    What a blowhard.

    October 24, 2012 03:17 pm at 3:17 pm |
  16. Nuance

    Okay....is the "Donald" gonna cut another 5 million dollar check in regard to Willard releasing his tax returns and offshore banking account info?

    October 24, 2012 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  17. AnneofVA

    What???? How absurd, why doesn't he just go away, he soooo irrelevant.

    October 24, 2012 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  18. heyguru1969

    Used to like Trump, used to watch Trump. Now that he's become an insane hack, I change channels (as does just about everyone else I know). Sorry sponsors, The Donald has earned you zero dollars from me. Quoth the Raven, "Nevermore"

    October 24, 2012 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  19. Axel Ehmann

    Is guy is just plain stupid

    October 24, 2012 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  20. Mary in AZ

    Crude...rude...pathetic!!!

    October 24, 2012 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  21. Robin Smith

    Toss in another $5000 to Mitt for full release of ten years' taxes. Put Romney's tax feats of last several years up against Obama's (purported) shenanigans of 20+ years ago. What a windbag!

    October 24, 2012 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  22. Johnny America

    He should just give the money to charity and shut up.

    October 24, 2012 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  23. TJ

    You're kidding, right?

    You realize, Donald, that with the election only days away, that the chances of success from your "challenge" is almost 100 percent failure?

    Sounds like a losing-bet to me. Are you losing your "edge?"

    i am beginning to think so about a lot of people.

    October 24, 2012 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  24. Roslyn

    Trump is such a loser. He just wants attention. What goes around comes around. I hope he prays every night for forgiveness or builds a hotel in hell because thats where he is going.

    October 24, 2012 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  25. Big Jilm

    Hey there "compassionate conservative" Trump ...it's not really "charity" when there are strings attached. If you spent just a percentage of your ad buys and campaign donations, you could easily afford to give all of your employees health care coverage. Walk the walk, big boy.

    October 24, 2012 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
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