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. keshav

    Trump, you are a broken record. What we are interested in to see Mitt Romney's last 10 years of tax return. Why don't you ask him to show that to All Americans.

    October 24, 2012 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  2. Dave

    Please offer the same for Romney's tax records since those would have a direct effect on the election results!

    October 24, 2012 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  3. rosaadriana

    Oh brother, this is the stupidest thing yet. How about 5mil for Romney's taxes before 2010. It would be more informative to know if Romney was given amnesty by IRS for his overseas accounts then anything on Obama's college transcripts. We already had a president that made straight Ds (W.) why would we care about Obama's grades.

    October 24, 2012 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  4. gmenfan54

    Trump. A rich, old blow hard.

    October 24, 2012 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  5. Donald Trump

    What an Idiot, a 2nd grader can see what his motives are. My opinion Mr. Trump is if you ran for president right now, you would not win even in the most conservative state, not even the county in which you were born. Its wonderful!

    October 24, 2012 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  6. glorydays

    The man is a total freak.

    October 24, 2012 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  7. Jack

    I have deal for you Trump. You provide all the details of your 6 bankruptcies and your private affairs and divorces.

    Come clean on all your underhanded deals, then I may consider you a example of decent human being, until then you are, and the best example of a bad example of how a human being should behavior, in my opinion!

    October 24, 2012 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  8. N. Shapiro

    Where's Romny's tax records??

    October 24, 2012 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  9. Richard

    This guy should spend that money on a good wig! Please cnn stop giving this moron free publicity.

    October 24, 2012 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  10. Annirich

    here's the last one. I'll be surprised if they post any of the above:

    p11. Barack Obama's Indonesian school registration card #203, date accepted January 1, 1968, released by the Associated Press in Indonesia, showing him using last name Soetoro and listing citizenship -Indonesia....

    October 24, 2012 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  11. TonyK

    Okay, i know you Baggers eat this tuff up, but you undecideds and fence sitters? This is the GOP. This is the tone and tenor of what they do and how they go about things. Do you really want guys like this to have a voice and power in the next administration? Think about it.

    October 24, 2012 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  12. 2012liberal

    Go away already. And breaking news. Trump may hv found michele obama may hv had divorce papers drawn up 10 yrs ago on barack. Whoopy. Coming from a three time loser himself!

    October 24, 2012 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  13. Gman

    This article is some kind of satire about Trump, right?

    October 24, 2012 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  14. pico

    old fool

    October 24, 2012 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  15. vbscript2

    Trump's possession of a brain is a matter of opinion, rather than fact. On a positive note, at least this isn't so whacky as to attract significant attention away from the actual issues being decided in this election.

    October 24, 2012 03:35 pm at 3:35 pm |
  16. sarge

    This guy is a big hero....in his own mind! Gasbag!

    October 24, 2012 03:36 pm at 3:36 pm |
  17. James Bauernschmidt

    Trump is an entertainer, and I am entertained. Now I am also curious why Obama's records have been kept secret for so long. Let's hope the truth will come out.

    October 24, 2012 03:36 pm at 3:36 pm |
  18. David in NC

    Just like the Dems said of Romney's tax returns; if he doesn't release them then he must be hiding something. This would be the same for Obama, right?

    October 24, 2012 03:36 pm at 3:36 pm |
  19. Rob Rubin

    If becoming wealthy means you also become a complete lunatic, I don't ever want to be rich.

    The AUDACITY of Trump to use deserving charities as bait for his stupid attention grabbing stunt.

    Write the check regardless if you're such a great person, otherwise lock yourself up in Trump tower and don't come down.

    October 24, 2012 03:36 pm at 3:36 pm |
  20. thomas

    Let's take up a collection to offer Trump if he will just go away.

    October 24, 2012 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  21. Christy P in Santa Cruz

    All Trump's wealth is on paper. Can he even cover the cost of tonight's dinner? Mister 3x bankruptcy! What a JOKE! hahahahahahahahaha! Now let's see what Gloria has to say. Mitt accused of ANOTHER felony? Wow! This guy just thinks we're all dumber than rocks, doesn't he? Is the 'Rich Guy' mentality that beleives he is above the law? Or is it his 'Lying for the Lord' Mormon cult mentality? Anything goes and the means justifies the end?

    Can't wait to hear him say on November 7th, 'President Obama, YOU SANK MY BATTLESHIP'

    October 24, 2012 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  22. Cas

    I will give Trump $10 if he releases that poor thing on his head back to the woods.

    October 24, 2012 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  23. luminent

    Why are we even paying attention to this man? Could he be any more irrelevant?

    October 24, 2012 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  24. LMC

    Donald Trump is a sleaze! I bet the Republican Party cringes over his antics, then again, maybe not.

    October 24, 2012 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
  25. Nik

    I would NOT even bet $5 to prove that this guy has some mental disorder. Its apparent. This is what happens when an idiot becomes LUCKY millionaire and every one AROUND praises him as smart dealer 😉

    October 24, 2012 03:37 pm at 3:37 pm |
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