October 24th, 2012
01:30 PM ET
10 years 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. Bob A.

    Wow. Donald Trump puts a condition on donations to charity. Guess he's not so much a philanthropist as an annoying gnat.

    October 24, 2012 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  2. Margaret

    HOT MESS!!!! Unbelievable!!! #STOP!!! Never have I've seen such disrespect for the Office of the President!!! Sad!! SHAME ON YOU, MR. TRUMP!!! Just give if you're going to give!! This is NOT a game!!

    October 24, 2012 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  3. Dan5404

    I have a deal for you, Mr. Trump. Join the human race and become an adult. We will reward you with listening to what you say. Otherwise, you're just an unpleasant noise and odor from the back room.

    October 24, 2012 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  4. Disgusted

    So you're holding ransom a charitable check that could do wonders for any number of people in need in an attempt to extort information that NO EMPLOYER IN THE COUNTRY requires from its employees from the ALREADY HIRED President of the United States? You are beyond disgusting. Have fun throwing your weight and money around you gigantic manchild.

    October 24, 2012 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  5. Moon base to Newt: Come in. Static

    This very ignorant POS can eat crow. Again, I ask: Mitt Romney. Are you 1 of 4,000 millionaires who received a slice of the 2008/2009 IRS Amnesty program???!!!! Is this why we are only allowed to see your 2010/2011 taxes???? Because you refuse to budge on this matter of taxes, I'm going to just assume you are. Thank you, The Donald, for giving me this platform to bring up those things which shall remain hidden. Buhahahah........

    October 24, 2012 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  6. vittoriokiss

    Trump took credit for last year's release of Obama birth certificate. Next week big announcement, he will take credit for creating the Universe.

    October 24, 2012 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  7. Carol

    Satan tried to bribe Jesus, too.

    October 24, 2012 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  8. The Choobs

    Who keeps their passport application? Don't you have to give that to the State Department to GET a passport? How many commenters here have their passport application still?

    October 24, 2012 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  9. Claudine Ghoulston

    Why not just donate to charity unconditionally? Oh, right.

    October 24, 2012 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  10. liberty

    ridiculous trump!

    October 24, 2012 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  11. tom higley

    "The Donald". He is the master showman. He gets himself all this publicity, and back Obama into a corner. If Obama takes the bait, Trump gets himself more in the news. If Obama doesn't take the bait, then Trump will ask, and rightfully so, what is he hiding. Love him or hate him, Trump knows how to work the news media.

    October 24, 2012 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  12. Lar5

    Why doesn't Romney tell this clown to shut up once and for all?

    October 24, 2012 03:11 pm at 3:11 pm |
  13. Adesh

    Here he goes again...maniac!!!!

    October 24, 2012 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  14. What a disgrace

    Wow, so Donald will donate 5 mill just like that,,,but won't unless Obama does something no sitting president has ever had to do. Seems reasonable...it's not like he'd want to donate his money just to be a good person.

    October 24, 2012 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  15. Mike

    Atta boy Donald. You are the perfect example of the 1%. You'll throw 5 million away to try and prevent the president from being elected when there are so many that could use the help. I guess the 1% has no use for those who are struggling. In the end, you could wind up helping the man you want to be defeated. One more thing Donald. When you die how much of your wealth will you be taking with you?

    October 24, 2012 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  16. projec34

    wat a waste of human space trump is

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

    The President doesn't have anything else to Prove, and last year when Donald trump said If the President show his Birth certificate than Donald Trump would show seven years of tax return. And Donald Trump LIE about that he never show any of them,not even one year. All Donald Trump Is doing Is starting more Crap to hurt the President In the election. I just hope most of the American People are not going to fall this crap. And If Donald Trump LIE the Last time ,he will LIE this time to. Donald Trump Is nothing but a big blow hard that keep filing bankrupt on tax payer money and he stay RICH.

    October 24, 2012 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  18. Pete

    Trump,I'm going after you,I've decided to put odor eaters in all your shoes and that my friend will end your miserable life..Your old man must be rolling in his grave and the sight of you Donald acting like a circus ring announcer selling tickets to your wifes side show,the one that swallows everything isn't she a beaut!!!Donald go take a cruise and don't come back,you're a miserable wealthy elitist that has to have his fingers in everything,trying selling sand to the Saudis jerk and see if they bite,we're not!!

    October 24, 2012 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  19. Ricky Dixon

    I offer 365 hours of unpaid community service to a charity of Romney's choice if he releases 10 years worth of tax filings! An hour a day everyday for one year!!!!

    October 24, 2012 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  20. Gurgyl

    Now?????? To evade tax????? Idiots.

    October 24, 2012 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  21. Anonymous

    What a effin joke that dude is.... Media hoe with no shame!

    October 24, 2012 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  22. nasa1

    Pathetic! ................Yawn...........................

    October 24, 2012 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  23. Alyx

    Trump should stay out of politics, it doesn't really look good on him. This is a closed issue for any objective, honest person, and pushing this point with no real evidence only discredits his reputation along with the remaining birthers that continue down the path to nowhere land.

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

    Even a carnival barker can be pathetic. Too bad no body cares what Thump has to say anymore. He joins Sarah Palin in the, "your opinion means nothing" club.

    October 24, 2012 03:12 pm at 3:12 pm |
  25. Mack

    Why doesn't Trump write the check if Mitt the Twit releases his tax information?
    The birther thing is old news.

    October 24, 2012 03:13 pm at 3:13 pm |
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