Calls for Obama's academic records blasted as 'nonsense'
April 28th, 2011
02:33 PM ET
9 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. Republican Robber Baron

    Rightie nuts started accusing CBS and Bob Schieffer of being "liberal media conspiracy" in 3, 2, 1...

    Even Pat Buchanan admitted this IS about race and nothing else. The old-school bigots that comprise a large % of the Republican Establishment hate Affirmative Action and pretty much anything else the Democrats championed under FDR, Kennedy and LBJ.

    April 28, 2011 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  2. Shawn

    The right-wing's anti-American, racist Obama Derangement Syndrome (ODS) has truly become a mockery of itself. America's right-wingers are increasingly desperate, crazy, childish and pathetic. They know they have 0% chance to win in 2012 and they are in a serious panic. It's becoming more and more clear that modern conservatism is a mental disorder.

    April 28, 2011 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  3. diana

    I think all Americans should boycott this Racist Trumps Television show? I consider myself a respectable American,and I will never mention Trump again! The Teaparty founder yesterday "Was Smurking and laughing when ask,Do you consider our President as American as you? His reply was, Ah,Ah, well I,ll have to do some more work on that"!!!!!! The Anchor then ask him why he thought this was funny,There is nothing funny about Racism!!!! Lunacy.....

    April 28, 2011 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  4. Yolanda

    So any doubts about Obama are racist driven, eh? By pandering to Obama, the media only adds to the speculation. Why is this president treated differently (protected) from all previous presidents? Is there some reverse racism involved ?

    April 28, 2011 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  5. jb1960

    No one asked for Bush's school records. Could it be because there was none? Where is the Trump records? Is Trump a citizen?


    April 28, 2011 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  6. Edward

    He was president of the garbage law review. Furthermore all that trump is doing now is uncovering republicans real motive, that is race. How did he get into harvard? I suppose trump is hoping that the GOP will follow him on this but oops too late. Rand Paul already asked that you release your voting records and also information on who you have donated money to.

    April 28, 2011 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  7. bcrunner

    Of course it's racism.. Plain and simple. Can we say "Papers please..."?? In this day of age a black person made it all the way to the top, and the middle aged and older Americans cannot accept it... they just won't.. Instead of celebrating this achievement as a country, we try to bring this man down... how dare he??

    April 28, 2011 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  8. carrotroot

    It would be easier on everyone if the birthers would just come out and say they won't vote for Obama because he is black. No need to hide behind accusations that he's not a citizen, or some other silly conspiracy.

    April 28, 2011 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  9. beefromNJ

    The only conclude from all of the accusations against President Obama, Is that it is because of the color of his skin. I don't care what anybody says that is it. They couldn't prove he wasn't born in the USA now they are saying he faked his academic record. Get real. Last night i heard on the news (no kidding) that someone said that the letter K like it was printed on his birth certificate was not typed that way in the 60s so the birth certificate must have been recently made up. (seriously???)

    April 28, 2011 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  10. rob

    Here we go everyone. Bob Schieffer, a host of a national weekly broadcast and member of the liberal media is implying this is motivated by RACISM. This is the fall back charge they will use for any opposition of the president. When it was Bill Clinton, they called it HATE, remember? All the HATERS out there, HATRED was driving the opposition to Bill clinton. These people are bad, we should not listen to them because they are driven by HATE. Now its racism, look for the NYT editorial warning about "The ugly strain of racism" out there to whip the liberal media and the Democrats into a frenzymof demogoguery against Republicans.

    Of course this is designed to drown out discussion of the real policy FAILURES of this administration and the solutions offered by the Republicans and Democrats who see the crises we are in and are serious about tackling it.

    President Obama needs to step out in front of this and calm everything down before it gets out of controll.

    April 28, 2011 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  11. Steve Jackson

    I don't like Obama and I don't like any of the GOPs they all are no good and Anti-american always helping the rich and other countries before helping working Americas but get off the academic records for any one A TOWN DRUNK CAN DO A BETTER JOB THEN WHAT IS IN OFFICE OF THE GOVERNMENT NOWADAYS

    April 28, 2011 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  12. Me

    Nothing will ever be good enough. . There's no pleasing these people. This isn't about academics, this is about the color of his skin and unless he is white...completely white...NOTHING WILL EVER BE GOOD ENOUGH. The economy could fully recover next week and they will say it took too long. If he brought about world peace TOMORROW they would ask why he didn't do it yesterday...NOTHING WILL EVER BE GOOD ENOUGH.
    They FEAR what they don't understand
    and HATE what they can't conquer


    April 28, 2011 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  13. MM

    No modern Pres has ever released their grades. We knew GWB was a bad student because his teachers came out and said so – even at HBS! Obama graduated Magna Cum Laude from Harvard law and for those of you that don't understand Latin – that means he is really fricken smart. He finished ahead of 90% of the rich privileged white kids that grew up going to Exeter and Choate. Got it!

    April 28, 2011 03:01 pm at 3:01 pm |
  14. Cincinnatian

    How much money did Trump make selling his soul?

    April 28, 2011 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  15. stejo

    Bob Schieffer nailed it.

    April 28, 2011 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  16. White, 67 yr old Texan

    The level of pure HATRED toward this President by the ultra right-wingers and Tea Partiers is shameful and disgraceful. Underlying it all cannot be other than pure racial bigotry as the birth accusation has been proven false. Reminds me of the incessant attacks on Clinton and all he did was have "sex under the table"----- At least he wasn`t screwing the middle class.

    April 28, 2011 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  17. mosi

    Donald Trump,is a spoil attention seeking fool, who should be ignore.

    April 28, 2011 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  18. Dan

    I wish trump would start showing his birth certificate(long form), and he said he was going to release his tax forms, where are they donnie? Lets see his high school and college transcripts while were at it. Full disclosure donnie. I bet in high school he got his butt beat at least once a day.

    April 28, 2011 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  19. Big~Smelly~Wet~Tuna

    This whole pathetic thing is turning the United States into the laughing stock of the world.

    April 28, 2011 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  20. Eli

    It's common knowledge that McCain graduated fifth from the bottom of his class at Annapolis and that George W. Bush earned an overall average of 78 while an undergraduate at Yale. In fact, John Kerry received an overall average of 77 (yes, Bush's average was slightly higher than Kerry's...actually, Kerry earned 4 D's as a freshman and W earned one D during his entire four years at Yale- astronomy).

    Why is this specific academic information regarding McCain, Bush and Kerry readilly available but Obama's undergraduate GPA/grades while at Occidental and Columbia are a mystery? Perhaps if revealed the information run counter with the mainstream media mythical mantra that Obama is the smartest man on the planet.

    April 28, 2011 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  21. REG in AZ

    Trump is an unscrupulous, self-focused distasteful person and to give him credibility, to even listen to him is ridiculous and a total waste of time. The Republicans have continually used this type of distraction while they constantly fail to offer anything responsible, conscientious or even honest: i.e., Palin; Limbaugh; Beck; the Tea Party; Boehner; McConnell; Kyl and several more. The people have a choice to either be swayed by these deceptive appeals to fears, biases, prejudices and emotions, intended to con and manipulate them, or to stay above the classless self-serving effort to use them and instead be objective and rational realizing that their best interests are served by not being drawn in. The question is, can the majority put their own biases, prejudices and emotions aside and reject the efforts to con and manipulate them?

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

    Donnie Trump, throwing rocks inside glass houses. He must have read something Hitler wrote, using hate and fear as some sort of basis to burn witches, in this case Obama. I hope he burns and crashes. When I see him on the street years from now, when he is dirty, smelly, and begging for a dime, I'll tell him to get a "real job".

    April 28, 2011 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  23. Darrell McLaughlin

    To Whom It May Concern: Donald Trump is a spoil bratt! I would question his intention and motives every time he opens his mouth. Donald Trump running for president is like me becoming the starting running back for the San Francisco Forty Niner. Fat chance that will happen. He likes to be seen and hear for the purpose of glorfiying himself. Donald is his own God. Man does not dwell in temples made with hands. Thank you!

    April 28, 2011 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  24. SoooMeeee

    It IS nonsense! Who the HECK does Trump think he is, anyway?? Does he actually feel as if he has some sort of clout for raising ANY question to the President and then receive acknowledgment? He is one heck of an arrogant individual who thinks he can get away with this behavior simply because he has some cash in the bank and owns a couple of towers.

    Trump, get a real lfe and take your petty nonsense somewhere else.

    April 28, 2011 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  25. once upon a horse

    people have asked what took President Obama so long to produce this birth certificate, my question is WHY DID HE HAVE TO ANYWAY?? No other POTUS in history has had to do this so is it just ironic that the first African-American one had to do so? I don't think it is. And now Trump is using that old saying "I heard that....." not giving information on who may have even said such a thing....and people want that guy to be president? Give me a break. Only blind eye right wingers can say that racism is not involved in this. The birther movement will still be alive kept by those who just are not willing to accept that the POTUS is not white, so instead of coming out saying that is the reason they hide behind this birther nonsense. You can never win a debate with a fool nor can stupid be cured. Just read some of the things people post here and you'll see where I'm coming from.

    April 28, 2011 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
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