(CNN) - Real estate mogul and television celebrity Donald Trump, who generated a media publicity blitz by saying he might run for president in 2012, announced Monday that he will instead remain a businessman.
"After considerable deliberation and reflection, I have decided not to pursue the office of the presidency," Trump said in a statement.
With his typical bravado, Trump maintained that he would have won the Republican primary and the general election, but recognized that "running for public office cannot be done half-heartedly."
"Ultimately, however, business is my greatest passion and I am not ready to leave the private sector," Trump said in the statement.
Trump's flirtation with running for the Republican nomination included his demand that President Barack Obama make public his full birth certificate from Hawaii.
Obama previously had provided a shorter version that serves as the public record in Hawaii, but amid the media glare on the issue raised in part by Trump's repeated questioning of whether the so-called long version of the document existed, the president released it last month.
At an NBC presentation of the network's fall line-up, Trump, star of "Celebrity Apprentice," said "NBC has been amazing. This will be our 12th season and I have to say I love 'Celebrity Apprentice.'"
"I will not be running for president as much as I'd like to," Trump added.
"After considerable deliberation and reflection, I have decided not to pursue the office of the Presidency. This decision does not come easily or without regret; especially when my potential candidacy continues to be validated by ranking at the top of the Republican contenders in polls across the country. I maintain the strong conviction that if I were to run, I would be able to win the primary and ultimately, the general election. I have spent the past several months unofficially campaigning and recognize that running for public office cannot be done half heartedly. Ultimately, however, business is my greatest passion and I am not ready to leave the private sector.
I want to personally thank the millions of Americans who have joined the various Trump grassroots movements and written me letters and e-mails encouraging me to run. My gratitude for your faith and trust in me could never be expressed properly in words. So, I make you this promise: that I will continue to voice my opinions loudly and help to shape our politician's thoughts. My ability to bring important economic and foreign policy issues to the forefront of the national dialogue is perhaps my greatest asset and one of the most valuable services I can provide to this country. I will continue to push our President and the country's policy makers to address the dire challenges arising from our unsustainable debt structure and increasing lack of global competitiveness. Issues, including getting tough on China and other countries that are methodically and systematically taking advantage of the United States, were seldom mentioned before I brought them to the forefront of the country's conversation. They are now being debated vigorously. I will also continue to push for job creation, an initiative that should be this country's top priority and something that I know a lot about. I will not shy away from expressing the opinions that so many of you share yet don't have a medium through which to articulate.
I look forward to supporting the candidate who is the most qualified to help us tackle our country's most important issues and am hopeful that, when this person emerges, he or she will have the courage to take on the challenges of the Office and be the agent of change that this country so desperately needs."
Thank you and God Bless America!
Donald J. Trump
big surprise – LOL ! This blowhard carni-barker was always just a wolf in sheeps clothing trying to infiltrate the herd and he didnt fool anyone but himself.
good cuz people are not supposed to imprison other people and most people do not however the law does
Trump and the Teapublican minions bring to vivid life George Carlin's line: "When you're born you get a ticket to the freak show. When you're born in America, you get a front row seat."
oh no oh no – there is nothing to live for without the donald as president – what will we ever do
Oh my! I was looking forward to the most hilarious reality show ever between the Republicans. We can still hope for Palin or Bachman, noone will defeat Obama!
The trumpet, "The Donald" is sooooooo smart. He makes Obama look like a clown.
"running for public office cannot be done half heartedly. Ultimately, however, business is my greatest passion and I am not ready to leave the private sector. " TRANSLATION– "What matters to me the most, not surprisingly, is MONEY. I just can't think of anything else, so I couldn't possibly put aside my own greed and self-interests to be President".
heheheeeeeeeeee.....I knew this on the WH correspondent dinner, it was clearly written on his face that 'I'M NOT RUNNING FOR PRESIDENT'. Where is your financial statement tramp?
The rest of the excerpt, " Now that I've gotten enough rating to get my show renewed for another season, I must return to my fantasy world and leave you poor, wretched minions to deal with the reality I have for so long been ignoring and bombastically criticizing over the past (too) many weeks. Good bye, and remember to tune me in next season. BIRTHER POWER!" And then he disappeared in a ploom of smoke (actually we saw him waddling off behind the curtain... stage right).
The real story with his not running is that he is opening a chain of hair salons!
I don't think he was ever very serious about running for President. He got more attention and was able to pressure the White House into releasing Obama's long-form birth certificate, so he got some of what he wanted. Based on his contribution history, I think he would rather make money and pay into the campaigns of who he thinks will win regardless of party in hopes of getting political favoritism.
I supported him fully, and I am greatly disappointed that he will not be running, because I thought he would be a great spoiler to divide the nutty end of the republican vote and assure Palin was not the republican candidate. I can only hope now he decides to enter late as an Independent to divide the conservative votes in the general election and assure a democratic victory.
Wait–he's supporting Obama? Trump says "I look forward to supporting the candidate who is the most qualified to help us tackle our country's most important issues."
Thank you, we'll listen !!! Please change hairstyle.
No. Please run, Donald. Run out of town being chased by an angry mob with torches and pitchforks.
Romney is the only sensible choice left. We need someone who can run a business and balance a budget. Despite Romney’s shortcomings he is a turnaround king who can get our economy back on track. I’m not a big fan of the HealthCare program in Mass but anyone who understands the constitution can see the difference between a federal mandate and a state mandate. If Mass wants a healthcare program they can have one. If another state does not want a healthcare program they don’t have to have one. That’s why state sovereignty is best because people can choose where to live based on the laws they prefer. Romney wants to scale back federal control and reign in spending. Romney 2012!
Durn! I wanted to see him fire North Korea.
!!!! Attiitude Maniac!!!!! and eeww.....the hair
He fell on his face on the birther issue; was humiliated by Obama at the WH Correspondents' Dinner; and then doubly humiliated when, the next day, the Obama administration got bin Laden. Trump had no credibility and could not afford to have his finances investigated. Plus, he just got sued by condo-buyers in FL for not clearly disclosing that he was not the actual developer of the condos that they purchased that were never completed, thus causing the buyers to lose their deposits. End of "campaign"; back to ripping off the construction and other contractors that his company employs.
I thought this man was a CAPITALIST? How can he deprive Comedy Central of billions of dollars of revenue like this?!
Well it was somewhat entertaining on the "You can't be serious" level. Fun for a while.
trump's ranking atop the polls was more reflective of the poor field of candidates seeking the GOP nomination. i sincerely hope that the mainstream media will not provide a forum for trump to garner publicity for himself. the larger question is why the media cannot discern what is important from the stuff that is insignificant. trump's opinion is no more significant than the opinion of any private citizen. CNN should reflect upon how much face time and words they have given to this "non-story".
This can't be a shock to anyone! He never planned to run...only to bring attention to himself and his pathetic, ratings diving reality show.
Obvious story is obvious.
Very well said, I wonder who wrote that for him.
Trump has destroyed his 'brand name' with the birther claims, but shall continued to be sought out for his crazy talk by a 24 hour media dying for content.