Hillary Clinton On Birtherism: “We Know Who Donald Is… There Is No Erasing It In History”
Today during her remarks at The Black Women’s Agenda in Washington, D.C., Hillary Clinton addressed Donald Trump’s long history of birtherism:
“We’re coming together at a pivotal moment for our country. I do believe that every election is important. But this one feels different, doesn’t it? That’s because it is. The next 53 days will shape the next 50 years. The future of our children and grandchildren hangs in the balance.
On one hand we have Donald Trump. And in recent weeks, he’s tried to restrain himself and clean-up his image. But as Maya Angelou once said, “when someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time.”
And we know who Donald is. For 5 years, he has led the birther movement to de-legitimize our first black president. His campaign was founded on this outrageous lie. There is no erasing it in history.
Just yesterday, Trump, again refused to say with his own words that the president was born in the United States. Now Donald’s advisors had the temerity to say he’s doing the country a “service” by pushing these lies. No, he isn’t. He is feeding into the worst impulses, the bigotry and bias that lurks in our country. Barack Obama was born in America, plain and simple. And Donald Trump owes him and the American people an apology.
So, my friends: There is no “new” Donald Trump. There never will be.
Donald Trump looks at Barack Obama after eight years and still doesn’t see him as an American.
Think about how dangerous this is. Imagine a person in the Oval Office who traffics in conspiracy theories and refuses to let them go – no matter what the facts are. Imagine someone who distorts the truth to fit a very narrow view of the world. Imagine a president who sees someone who doesn’t look like him, and doesn’t agree with him, and thinks that person must not be a “real” American.
Donald Trump is unfit to be President of the United States. We cannot become insensitive to what he says and what he stirs up. We just can’t accept this. We’ve got to stand up to it. If we don’t, it won’t stop.”
Here is a sampling of the times, following the release of the birth certificate, when Donald Trump still called President Obama’s nationality into question.
April 27, 2011: President Obama Releases His Long-form Birth Certificate
April 27, 2011: Trump Calls Legitimacy Into Question
QUESTION: “What are your qualifications to assess this? You say, you have to look at it and you have to decide. What gives you the authority the–”
TRUMP: “Well, I’m going to look at it and many other people are going to look at it. You are going to have many people looking at it. And, obviously, they are going to have to make a decision, because it is rather amazing that, all of the sudden, it materializes.” [Press Conference, Portsmouth NH, 4/27/11]
October 27, 2011: Trump: “No, I Don’t Necessarily” Think President Obama’s Birth Certificate Is Valid.
PIERS MORGAN: “Do you accept that what he produced is valid?”
TRUMP: “No, I don’t necessarily.”
MORGAN: “But you believe he probably was born in America?”
TRUMP: “Well, I say he might have been”
MORGAN: But what does your gut tell you? Because you are a smart guy.”
TRUMP: “My gut tells me a couple of things. Number one, you know, it took a long time to produce the certificate and when it came out as you know, you check out the Internet, many people say it is not real. OK? That it’s a forgery. That’s what they say. I don’t know if it was.”
MORGAN: “That’s why the internet is a lot of nonsense, isn’t it?”
TRUMP: “You know what? OK, fine. But you know, they go over it and lots of different things and lots of different reasons. And the other thing is nobody has been able to see, you know, the day of his birth, they had twins born. They had — the other one born. Nobody has been able to find any records that he was born in that hospital.” [Piers Morgan Tonight, CNN, 10/27/11]
August 6, 2012: Trump Tweets Birth Certificate Is A Fraud
“An ‘Extremely Credible Source’ Has Called My Office And Told Me That @BarackObama’s Birth Certificate Is A Fraud.” [@realDonaldTrump, Twitter, 8/6/12]
October 26, 2012: Trump Continued To Say That He Had “No Idea” Where President Obama Was Born.
O’REILLY: “Where do you think he was born?”
TRUMP: “I have no idea. I really have no idea. I really have no idea.” [The O’Reilly Factor, Fox News, 10/26/12]
August 11, 2013: Trump Again Continued To Say He Had “No Idea” Whether President Obama Was Born In The U.S.
KARL: “But you don’t still question he was born in the United States, do you?”
TRUMP: “I have no idea… Well, I don’t know, was there a birth certificate? You tell me. You know some people say that was not his birth certificate. I’m saying, I don’t know. Nobody does.” [This Week, ABC, 8/11/13]
May 20, 2014: Trump: “A Lot Of People Don’t Agree With You. A Lot Of People Feel It Wasn’t A Proper Certificate.”
FITZPATRICK: “You questioned his citizenship during his campaign. You’ve said afterwards if he produced that long form birth cert, you’d produce your tax returns, but you didn’t do it, did you?”
TRUMP: “I don’t know. Did he do it? If I decide to run for office, I’ll produce my tax returns. Absolutely. I would love to do that. I did produce actually a financial statement even though I wasn’t even running, I did produce a financial statement and it was shocking to some because it was so much higher than people thought even possible. It was a great statement and it was my honor to do it. No, the president should come clean. He should have come clean over the years. If you remember the very famous story where I offered him $5 million if he showed some basic records and he never took me up on it and that would be for charity. Charities would have benefited and it would have been a great think.”
FITZPATRICK: “He is a citizen. He produced that long form birth certificate…”
TRUMP: “A lot of people don’t agree with you. A lot of people feel it wasn’t a proper certificate.” [TV3 News, TV3 Ireland, 5/20/14]
July 9, 2015: Trump Said He Still Did Not Know If President Obama Was Born In America.
The Hill: “Donald Trump says he’s still not convinced President Obama was born in America, but that he’s not interested in rehashing the issue. ‘I don’t know. I really don’t know,’ the 2016 Republican presidential candidate told CNN when asked on Thursday. ‘I don’t know why he wouldn’t release his records.’” [The Hill, 7/9/15]
January 6, 2016: Trump On Whether President Obama Was A Natural-Born Citizen: “Who Knows? Who Knows?… I Have My Own Theory On Obama. Someday I’ll Write Another Book.”
BLITZER: “Because you know your critics are saying you’re doing to Ted Cruz what you tried to do to President Obama, where he was born, his birth certificate.”
TRUMP: “Who knows about Obama?”
BLITZER: “His mother was a U.S. citizen-born in Kansas. Was he a natural-born citizen?”
TRUMP: “Who knows? Who knows? Who cares right now? We’re talking about something else, OK. I mean, I have my own theory on Obama. Someday I’ll write a book. I’ll do another book, and it will do very successfully.” [Situation Room, CNN, 1/6/16]