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. jnpa

    OMG...Trump needs to be ignored and maybe he will go away. How unprofessional is this man? Is he a representative of the GOP? How can anyone ever take him seriously.

    October 24, 2012 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  2. jim watson

    Suggest President Obama take the offer and release his passport along with 1st semester of Kg grades and passport and semester grades for every school year until Trump folds.

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

    Dear CNN, remind me again why it is news every time Donald Trump says something? Because frankly, I'm unaware of a single person who cares.

    October 24, 2012 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  4. Mike

    The problem with blowhards like Trump is that they can keep making their outlandish and non-factual statements with zero evidence to support them and become a nuience because the unintelligent keep sucking Trumps garbage because he's on the TV...

    October 24, 2012 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  5. Kitty Luv

    Donald – I wish to God YOU weren't a so-called American. I wish with all my heart that you were an illegal alien with an arrest warrant and the Feds were bearing down on you at this very instant.... Americans like YOU, we can all do without!

    October 24, 2012 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  6. Micro tower

    Why can't somebody just shut this guy up?

    October 24, 2012 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  7. milehighguy

    Hey Donny...in all fairness, why don't you offer 5M to the Morman church if Mitts releases more than two years worth of tax records?

    October 24, 2012 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  8. Karen C. Martin

    I am embarrassed that Trump can claim U.S. citizenship. He must be the original "Ugly American." No wonder people around the world hate us.

    October 24, 2012 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  9. Valar Morghulis

    Give it up LOSER!

    October 24, 2012 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  10. Timbuck2

    Apparently, Trump needs attention. No one has paid him any attention of late....

    October 24, 2012 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  11. DR

    He just doesn't want to close those off shore loopholes and tax shelters. He will do and say anything, just like Mitt.

    October 24, 2012 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  12. Mammy Patinkin

    You leave my Li'l Bammy alone!

    October 24, 2012 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  13. SteveN

    Why doesn't this man just hurry up and die.

    October 24, 2012 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  14. Dan

    Sounds like an easy 5 mil for Obama’s favorite charity I wonder if he’ll take him up on it?

    October 24, 2012 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  15. MarcNJ

    what do his college transcripts have to do with anything? I've never been clear on that.

    October 24, 2012 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  16. chris hanson

    Mr. Trump, President Obama will not release these records because he cannot. You see, Obama was sent to Earth by an alien race to prepare for their invasion. That's right, so he was not born in Hawaii nor Kenya but on a far away hostile world. The invasion will commence when Obama leaves the White House so we should all vote for Obama and save the Earth from invasion.

    October 24, 2012 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  17. David

    The Donald is a clown and his act wore out a lonnnnnnnnnnnnng time ago.

    October 24, 2012 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  18. Solitaire

    Why isn't he offering the same for Mitt Romney??? Then he could donate 10 million to charities. He's such a nice guy.

    October 24, 2012 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  19. A. Pham

    Charity comes from the heart. It should not be driven by any other motivations...if you do this then i will do that. Shame on you Donald Trump!

    October 24, 2012 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |
  20. Joe

    Is this guy for real???? HAHAHAHAHA!!!!! How about instead, give $5million to charity if Romney releases 10yrs worth of tax returns???? I think Romney has been too secretive about that!

    October 24, 2012 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  21. Observing From A Distance

    Boy this is sure good news for those of us with average intelligence. Two of the richest men in America, Romney and Trump are both blithering idiots, that augurs well for the average Joe and Josephine....all you need is a big mouth, and balls coupled with a complete lack of character which enables you to lie everyday about everything until somebody buys into your BS. And pleeeeease try to refrain from calling Trump a reality star....he hasn't visited reality in thirty years.

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

    well i've just posted a number of "Expert" testimony to the facts that Obo's SS number, birth certificate etc was proven in a court in GA as being falsified. We'll see if they get posted. And then it begs the question, although MSM reporters were there at the time, NONE of them reported on the findings. hmm......typical isn't it.

    October 24, 2012 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  23. J.C.

    I wish Trump's hair would crawl off his head and strangle him.

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

    Mr Trump really needs to go to one of his islands for some r&r till after the election.

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

    Anyone who sees Trump as anything but a self-promoting blow-hard is delusional. Like Ann Coulter, he is a troll, and the best response to such grifters would be indifference. (Now THAT would kill them!)

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