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. CaraW

    This guy needs electric shock therapy-and a haircut.

    October 24, 2012 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  2. Babs

    Is he for real?!?!?!?!? That hair has put him over the cliff!!!!!!!!!

    October 24, 2012 03:40 pm at 3:40 pm |
  3. DocHollywood

    It's hard to believe that this man is such a bone head. What makes him relevant anymore? Does he assume that because he has more money than most of us that his opinion is best? That's certainly how Mr. Romney has acted. They need to ignore blowhards like this guy that is only trying to get cheap publicity because no one cares anything about them anymore.

    October 24, 2012 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  4. Philip

    God what a boob!!

    October 24, 2012 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  5. Mtheumer

    Hahahaha! What a clown!

    October 24, 2012 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  6. ggirl

    How about Romney release his tax records... that's worth 5 million in overseas accounts!

    October 24, 2012 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  7. Betty

    OMG the man is a complete idiot!

    October 24, 2012 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  8. olkvgn

    Exactly how much does this guy HATE obama? It's one thing to disagree strongly politically, But it's another thing altogether to have this degree of anger and vitriol. This guy hates obama more than he hates sandusky.

    October 24, 2012 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  9. Presto88

    Sure why not?

    Cmon Obama..you have be whining about Romney's tax records..show us your college transcripts!! Its for a good cause!!

    October 24, 2012 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  10. jeff connors

    well man up obumo....

    October 24, 2012 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  11. NYbywayofTexas

    One would think with all the money Donald Trump has that he would just live his life and leave others alone. Let's start digging in his life and see what we would come up with. Hmmmm... buried skeletons. Now let's look into his ancestry. Hmmm.... I hope that all he is doing to deface the President will backfire and everyone will know him for who he is. Satan's spawn!!!!

    October 24, 2012 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  12. mittens Rmoney

    Oy vey... the trumpster needs to take his stupidity to the dumpster...

    Or go to a therapist – Donald is in dire need of attention.

    October 24, 2012 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  13. crownme

    obama please don't pick the Muslim Brotherhood!

    October 24, 2012 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  14. Kid Dolamite

    When you thought Trump couldn't show more ignorance, he always shows you a new low. Of course, $5M or any sum of mnoney is not even a consideration for the leader of the free world ... he could raise that sum in one half-hour fundraiser himself. What would have been more impressive is Trump saying he would donate that sum of money unconditionally to both candidate's charity of choice for something noble like each holding a special gala for returning solidiers and their families ... sometimes it's reflective the company you keep so Romney would do himself a favor dropping this self-serving knucklehead.

    October 24, 2012 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  15. BobFromPA

    Why is this news?

    October 24, 2012 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  16. Ray Pastrano

    I will offer Donald Trump $5.00 if he will pose without his wig on and stick an ice cream cone on his forehead.

    October 24, 2012 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  17. tom

    So he couldn't find any dirt. This is the best he could do? Pretty pathetic.

    October 24, 2012 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  18. Steve S

    I wonder how many Americans would give $5 to their favorite charity, if Trump would just keep his big mouth shut for 24 hours?

    October 24, 2012 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  19. Jennifer

    Donald Trump is a comedian with no funny jokes

    October 24, 2012 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  20. Sol-L.I. N.Y.

    What's the problem with this? Every president before him has done what Trump is asking. He must be hiding something.

    October 24, 2012 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  21. axolotl

    What an idiot.

    October 24, 2012 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  22. Anthony Linton

    I am sick of Donald trump and his stupidity. I really would love to tell him where to stuff that 5 million dollar.

    October 24, 2012 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  23. Victoria

    Why dont he offer 5 million to Romney to release more than 2yrs of tax returns...

    October 24, 2012 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  24. Patrick

    Interesting to see what Mr. President does. Trump must know something the American people don't. I, for one, would love to see Obama take him up on it. If he has nothing to hide he should do it.

    October 24, 2012 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  25. jdm

    Hey Trump, sweeten the pot and give 5 mill to charity if you boy Romney releases 10 years of tax returns. Deal?

    October 24, 2012 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
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