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Donald Trump Goes Birther Again – And Fox News Lets Him Skate

Reported by Ellen - October 25, 2011 -

In case you missed it, Presidential candidate Rick Perry announced over the weekend that after talking birtherism with Donald Trump, Perry could not give “a definitive answer” as to whether or not the long-form birth certificate President Obama released last spring is real. Tonight, Greta Van Susteren hosted Donald Trump on On The Record and asked him if it’s true he’s not convinced. Trump revived his original claims and then pretended it wasn’t important. Van Susteren made a point of saying she thought the birth certificate real and she said she “thought” Trump had previously acknowledged its validity. However, she never pointed out the mountain of evidence confirming its authenticity and she never asked Trump what happened to that big investigation in Hawaii he was supposedly conducting into the matter – and then stopped mentioning after Obama's release of the birth certificate.

“I’m not a major believer,” Trump said about the birth certificate. “I don’t know how it just miraculously appeared. We’ll see what happens… All of a sudden after years and years, it was produced out of nowhere.”

Fox News alert! It didn’t just “miraculously” appear out of nowhere. President Obama had released his birth certificate, albeit in the normal short form given when people request a copy of their birth certificates, in 2008. It was thoroughly examined and authenticated by two fact-checking agencies, FactCheck.org and PolitiFact at the time. When the long-form birth certificate was released and re-validated, FactCheck noted - but Van Susteren did not - Obama received a special exemption from the Hawaii Department of Health to have his long form birth certificate released, because it is ordinarily kept confidential.

Sadly, Van Susteren didn’t mention any of that.

Trump continued, “Some people have serious, serious doubts as to its validity.”

Van Susteren should have asked right then and there who those people are. Because mainstream conservatives like Karl Rove and Haley Barbour have not only accepted the birth certificate but warned other Republicans against making it an issue.

But after dropping his birther bomb, Trump laughably said, “I, frankly, really want to get on to much more important subjects, although that’s a very important one because if in fact it’s not 100%, he’s not supposed to be the president of this country, which is a pretty important fact but nevertheless, I want to talk about jobs, I want to talk about the economy, I want to talk about how China and OPEC and others are ripping us off. But I’m not a fan.”

Van Susteren seemed taken aback. She said she thought the matter had been “put to rest with you” last April.

Apparently not - though in April Trump congratulated himself for having "accomplished" the release of the birth certificate and then promised to probe Obama's academic records, suggesting that Obama only got into Columbia and Harvard because he's black. Funny how Trump hasn't brought up that investigation lately.

Trump now claimed to Van Susteren the birther issue had, “Never (been put) to rest. I’m at a point where I say, ‘Look, the country is going to hell in a handbasket and something has to be done about it and we shouldn’t be talking about the birth certificate,' but people love to talk about it. For instance, it’s your first question.”

Pardon my French, but that’s nothing less than a load of bullshit. Trump knows damned well that alleging that our president is not qualified to be president is inflammatory and while he persists in throwing those flaming arrows – and pretending it’s other people over-hyping the matter – he has done nothing to offer a shred of evidence to back up his claims, other than to toss out a lot of self-serving suspicions.

“I’m convinced it’s the real deal,” Van Susteren said. And I give her credit for saying that but why didn’t she ask why, if Trump truly believes President Obama may not be qualified to be president, he has kept quiet about it for so many months? And what happened to that Hawaii investigation Trump said he was conducting on the QT? On April 6th, Trump told Meredith Viera on The Today Show his investigators “cannot believe what they’re finding.”

Either Van Susteren is the most monumentally inept news host for not asking those questions or she deliberately decided not to challenge Trump's credibility. So instead of booting him off the show as a huckster, she spent more than the next 10 minutes probing his thoughts on the election and, of course, further attacking President Obama.

Her next question to Trump was little more than a cue for him to begin attacking Obama on other grounds. She asked, “You’re very active on Twitter and you just tweeted recently, ‘Does Barack Obama ever work? He’s constantly campaigning and fundraising on both the taxpayers’ dime and time. Not fair.’ What provoked that?”

By the way, let’s not forget that last week, Trump made it clear on the Hannity show that he thought the reason 95% of blacks voted for Obama was because they’re racists.

When Trump surfaced with his birtherism last spring, FactCheck.org, hardly a liberal outfit, debunked his claims with the conclusion, “If Donald Trump worked for us, we'd have to say: "Donald, you're fired — for incompetence."

Trump should be permanently removed from the air. Pronto.



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