(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
Ok so who else we got ???
hahaha, thank the MILLIONS of Americans!!! Are you kidding yourself, yes?!!! He COULD win if he DID RUN, but nah, not gettin' in there! He is still the same spoiled brat his father made- get over yourself! There is a fine line between confidence and arrogance- confidence is attractive, arrogance is pathetic and is he sooooo pathetic!!!! Didn't we all know this was coming?!!!!!
Is anyone surprised? He actually ran a very successful candidacy if you think about it. How much publicity did he get for his television show? That's what this was all about. Maybe next season he can host "The Biggest Loser."
Knew it was just a publicity stunt for Celebrity Apprentice. Congrats if you managed to fall for it.
Trump is an absolute joke, he is an embarassment to America. I wish he would have ran so he could have been even more exposed as a moron.
Trump has created more jobs than Obama has!!!!!!!!
why would anyone vote for this man? hasn't he had to declare bankruptcy on some of his businesses multiple times? he can't even run his own empire let alone the whole country!
Awwww... I'd say (as will millions of others) "You're Fired", but, Mr. Trump, you weren't even close to being a candidate TO be hired! So let me say, "You're irrelevant."
The real loss is the lack of Darrell Hammond cameos on SNL as Trump now. *sigh*
Trump's press releases are well pass self-aggrandizement and just short of public masturbation.
Kudos to CNN for running the entire release, not just the abridged version.
........because Obama was soooooo much more qualified. Civic leader? Absentee senator? Puh-lease.
For a real estate guy he accomplish something. He made the President do something he didn't want to do in the first place. I would have voted for him.
And in a couple of months we'll see the tell-all book be released about how the Donald single-handedly brought the Republican party down – as it was his 'plan all along'. The only value the Donald holds is the Donald.
Unfortunately this won't shut him up any more than losing her vice-presidential bid and quitting on Alaskans has put a sock in Palin's mouth. With all this hot air you'd think he'd have had a milder winter.
Damn. I was looking forward to seeing him in a debate.
My goodness this guy couldn't tell the truth if it slapped him in the face. The reason he's not running for president is because he's a FOOL who is NOT QUALIFIED to be president. And, the Amercian people have told him so very clearly, and very loudly. He has exposed himself over the past few months as being every bit as stupid as we suspected he was. Now, he has the time to worry about his own seemingly insurmountable debt structure, rather than America's.
I, along with every late night show host, will dearly miss him .
"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."
Yeah, important issues like Obama's birth certificate and the implication that he might not be Christian. Do us a favor, Donald... stop providing us with valuable services. That's what Fox News is for...
truth is he didn't want release his financial records....he's a cook, a joke with lots of ex-wives and he's lots of baby's daddys
And were "SHOCKED"? NOT!!!!!
Isn't it funny how candidates and various political entities are citing "grassroots movements" supports? In Mr. Trumps case maybe he should have cited "hair roots" movements. 🙂
Frankly, this will the GOP tremendously. Their message was being blurred by Trumps "grassroots" exploration of a run for the Presidency. These are serious times and we need serious candidates to debate them.
I do think that Mr. Trump achieved his goal of a ratings bump and an increase in his personal wealth, but, I think he really took a hit on his reputation.
Really CNN? Breaking news?
Now if only we could disempower/shut up all his supporters. How utterly stupid and audience-chasing for the so-called news media to even report this as a serious current event. Thank God for BBC World and Al Jazeera on PBS!
I don't think anyone actually thought he was running...except of course the media. Come ON.
But, did his TV show get a boost? After all, that's the only reason he did this.