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. I Voted Early In NC

    Good grief why don't we all chip in across America if Romney releases his tax returns and tells us what he really did overseas when he avoided the draft. We also want to see Romney's passport, how many times he has been to China and his birth certificate. We can donate the money to Trump so he can buy a decent hairpiece.

    October 24, 2012 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  2. WordUpToo

    What a schmuck. Is there no end to this guy's idiocy?

    October 24, 2012 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  3. Irish Seanachie from Maine

    Jakkers ! Donald lay off the hair spray. You have been inhaling that stuff and ye should know that it is having a telling effect on your mind.

    October 24, 2012 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  4. lucy elberg

    you guys are the best

    October 24, 2012 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  5. Simon Black

    Ahhh, Donald Trump, the living embodiment of why the this nation fell into the worst economic disaster since the Great Depression.

    Huckster, game player, lier, cheater, greed for greed sakes. Real issues don't matter, lets make ridiculous claims, try to get a little dirt on Obama and see if we can use deceit and pure cold hard cash to fool the uneducated, American masses into voting for Romney, and keeping people like me as Rich as they possibly can be.

    October 24, 2012 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  6. chemteck29

    Mitt must be getting desperate! lol

    October 24, 2012 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  7. stars

    Trump you will lose you are a real jerk dude!

    October 24, 2012 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  8. Born on Third Base-Thinks he hit a triple

    This guy is a complete moron.
    Why doesn't he offer to pay to trade Romney's tax returns for Obama's school transcripts?

    October 24, 2012 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  9. Chat Pata

    Trump: I want proof he was born in the USA
    Obama: Here is a newspaper announcement
    Trump: I want a birth certificate
    Obama: Here is the birth certificate
    Trump: I want the long certificate
    Obama: Here is the long certificate
    Trump: I want the college record
    Obama: I would, if you promise to shove it up your a$$ in public

    October 24, 2012 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  10. SentTheWave

    What a piece of work. Donald Trump is truly garbage.

    October 24, 2012 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  11. Really?

    Really? We are still on this? There must be some pretty amazing forgers, cover up teams and history erasers for this to not have been confirmed by now if it were true. Not a huge Obama fan, but this is a little ridiculous.

    October 24, 2012 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  12. Lloy Kalispell, MT

    The Donald Duck could raise more money and do a better service for the country if he asked for the release of Romney's tax returns. We know plenty about Obama, but still little about Mitt's past personal financial dealings.
    Why is he unwilling to release that information – and why are conservatives not demanding those records? Ah, could it be a vast right wing double standard?

    October 24, 2012 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  13. Canuck

    Ok, so what about Romney's tax returns???

    October 24, 2012 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  14. Overlord_Xenu

    Let's be honest. This is an attempt to keep the Birther movement alive. This is what GOP backers are reduced to? It's just sad.

    October 24, 2012 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  15. Trumpnesia

    Donald, you're image has certainly tarnished itself, how can you continue to play on another man's success. This world is so rude, selfish, and ignorant to the casual idea of RESPECT. You appear as wicked and full of self destruction, its as real as your fake hair do. Relax, and learn how to respect the Commander In Chief, you will never be.

    October 24, 2012 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  16. jehbaker

    Dear CNN, remind me again why it is news every time Donald Trump says something?

    October 24, 2012 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  17. Doc

    This guy is billionaire and he has nothing more to do than be a rabble rouser.

    I consider this political spam worthy of deletion.

    October 24, 2012 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  18. John Q Public

    Oh brother, as a conservative I just have to wonder, when will Trump shut up and go away?

    October 24, 2012 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  19. Tonya Sweat

    Some people never know when to quit, and it seems that Donald Trump needs to give it up already.

    October 24, 2012 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  20. Jim

    Hmm.........why didn't he offer $5 million to catch Bin Laden?

    October 24, 2012 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  21. BNH

    Here's a deal for you Mr. Trump. . . $10 million if you release that rug on the top of your head! Now that's a DEAL!!

    October 24, 2012 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  22. shame of this guy

    that is one ugly dude can his money not buy him a new look – hard on thee ole eyes

    October 24, 2012 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  23. GianCarlo

    That's funny, why was McCain's birth place was not an issue, when he really was not born in the US. Let me see......Could it be that MCain is not BLACK and Obama is. Come on people stop beating around the bush, Americans are Racist, Racism still exist in this country and it's all about the color of his skin. The KKK is alive and doing very well in this country, so lets stop the BS.

    October 24, 2012 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  24. P Martin

    Donald Trump is an idiot. He does nothing but try to stir up controversy and make idiot remarks that he thinks the american public really gives a **** about. I for one do not believe a word that comes out of his mouth and he has been trying for over 4 years to vilify President Obama over stupid stuff. What he is doing now should be illegal and I think an investigation into his practices should be instigated.God, what a dummy.

    October 24, 2012 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  25. tebojockey

    Wouldn't it be wonderful if someone simply sutured this fool's mouth shut?

    October 24, 2012 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
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