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. midwest3

    This man is shameless! The President's birth certificate is a sham, according to Trump, yet we're supposed to believe that he would recognize the President's college records! He would do better to make the same offer to see even the past 5 years' worth of Romney's tax records. We all know that if Romney could get 10 minutes of positive press by releasing them, he would have done that months ago.

    October 24, 2012 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  2. Freddy4

    Oh brother. just shut up and go away Trump.

    October 24, 2012 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  3. moving1

    he can start by paying his creditors back some of the millions they lost when he filed multiple Bankruptcies

    October 24, 2012 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  4. vvegasvada

    So this is Trumps big announcement?

    Donald Trump is a joke.

    October 24, 2012 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  5. windycitynovelist

    I will donate 5 dollars to charity if someone punches this egomaniac multiple times in the face. The charity of my choice: "Help for Attention-Craving Men with Bad Hair Pieces".

    October 24, 2012 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  6. xenexprime

    Will he be offering the same for Romney's full tax returns? or perhaps we can ask the Romney family to disclose the reason why NOT ONE of their 5 SONS served in the military? did their dad told them it was not worth it or important enough? or perhaps they believed they were too privileged to do so? I mean if we are going to be asking personal questions we might as well go on and on for both candidates right?

    October 24, 2012 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  7. Cricket666


    October 24, 2012 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  8. Doris Lomack

    Yes, you can give it to a worthy cause me.

    October 24, 2012 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  9. Manny

    Someone euthanize this poor fool!

    October 24, 2012 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  10. Marlene Porter

    Trump is a rude arrogant sick person . How about have him show medical records about the piece of hair he he stapled to his head. Have him prove to America that it is real !

    October 24, 2012 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  11. Connie Smith

    I hope that the president has more important issues and does not respond to Mr. Trump's bullying.
    We try to teach students not to bully, however adults should set a correct example.
    How sad that someone who is as arrogant and self centered as Mr. Trump continues to get media coverage when there are "important" issues to be discussed.

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

    Sad to see a man as young as Donald Trump suffering from Alzheimers. Poor guy just foams at the mouth whenever he's off his meds.

    October 24, 2012 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  13. Frank Sellers

    Pathetic. Desperate. Muck-raking. Sad.

    October 24, 2012 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  14. Tho

    Stupid demand!!!

    October 24, 2012 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  15. Craig from Pa.

    Wish he would have announced he is leaving the country for good with Michelle Bachmann, Mitch McConnel, The Koch Brothers, Sarah Palin and Grover Norquist..This country would be much better off without them!@

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

    And the reason this nutter is relevant would be...

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

    CNN is covering Trump's big announcement pretty well! I imagine it would be the opposite if Trump actually had a big announcement. Then it would be the usual ignore.

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

    Has Trump made a similar offer to Romney if he releases more of his income tax returns?

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

    Donald Trump is obviously bored and needs someone to play with.....

    October 24, 2012 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  20. Rick in AZ

    Poor Donald, trying desperately to stay relevant, but failing. Yawn!!

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

    This is consistent with his business practices. Use his money unethically and unpatriotically to bully, cajole people to his self-serving whim. It's about the Donald. He believes he alone knows what's best for the country and to get a President elected that will be beholden to him.....King Donald. Our founding fathers are spinning in their graves.

    October 24, 2012 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  22. Elias

    I suffered the same problem. The guy is kind of indirect Zombie. Many who were found inept and cowards, made him a loser by bullying guys like Trump and permanently psychotic, watching a Zombie. Overall: Direct and/or Indirect the evil doer is more catholic than the pope. It is all scam.

    October 24, 2012 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
  23. Lauren

    What a joke! Donald...just stop talking, man. This is sad.

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

    Mi madre, this hombre is muy loco in la cabesa. "The face of America?" Say it isn't so!!!!

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

    Will he pay the same for Romney to release his taxes for the last 10 years?

    October 24, 2012 03:25 pm at 3:25 pm |
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