While Fox News’ Fox & Friends ignored Trump’s birtherism for the first hour of their show this morning, while nearly everybody else was talking about it, Fox Business’ Mornings with Maria Bartiromo was talking to Trump about – guess what? – President Obama’s place of birth.
After pressing his dishonest smear that Hillary Clinton is the author of birtherism, Trump was asked by Bartiromo,
“Can you clarify your stance on this? […] we know that Obama now, he was born in America, correct?”
Trump was vague as ever, teasing,
“You watch my statement. We have to keep the suspense going. You my friend, you watch the statement. I think you’ll be happy.”
Watch courtesy of Media Matters for America:
MARIA BARTIROMO: Mr. Trump, let me ask you about this birther issue. Your senior communication advisor Jason Miller addressed the birther comments, saying that you believe President Obama was in fact born in the United States. Now I remember when this all went on, and you were very successful in making sure this issue was front and center. He said “Hillary Clinton’s campaign first raised the issue to smear” —
DONALD TRUMP: True.
BARTIROMO: Your communications person said that “Hillary Clinton raised the issue first to then smear then-candidate Barack Obama in her very nasty failed 2008 campaign for president.” That you believe that President Obama was born in the United States right now. Can you clarify your stance on this?
TRUMP: Well I’m going to make a big announcement on it today, probably during my first speech at my new hotel. We’re opening as you know on Pennsylvania Avenue, the Old Post Office. And it’s, you’ll be happy to hear, on budget, exactly on budget, even a little under budget, and about a year and a half ahead of schedule. That’s something you don’t hear from government.
BARTIROMO: I just don’t remember Hillary bringing it up. When did she bring it up? During the campaign?
TRUMP: Hillary brought it up during the campaign. It was 2008 and it was brought up to a fare thee well. And she brought it up. And I was the one that was successful in getting him to release his birth certificate. I’m going to have a big statement made today at the hotel. I’m speaking in front of Medal of Honor winners that endorsed me. I have many Medal of Honor winners who have endorsed me and will be endorsing me today, which I’m very proud of. And I’m going to be making a major statement on this whole thing and what Hillary did. But no, she is one that started it and she was unable or incapable of finishing it. That’s the way it worked out. But I got him to release his birth certificate.
BARTIROMO: I remember.
TRUMP: So we will have a big statement and I hope you are going to be watching.
BARTIROMO: I’m definitely going to be watching, but the bottom line is this: we know that Obama now, he was born in America, correct?
TRUMP: You watch my statement. We have to keep the suspense going. You my friend, you watch the statement. I think you’ll be happy.
Donald Trump is playing his same old games, and Fox is facilitating him, keeping birtherism alive. Indeed, as can be seen here, the network has made a game of it.
Donald Trump, not Hillary Clinton, made birtherism a thing in 2011 and he has never let it go, and will keep using it as a stick with which to beat Hillary Clinton, just as he has long attacked Barack Obama.
In the absence of a real platform, or even any viable policy positions, all Trump can hope to do is keep the Clinton campaign off balance and on the defensive. Just look how much mileage he got out of his uninformative and meaningless grandstanding on the Dr. Oz show.
Hrafnkell Haraldsson, a social liberal with leanings toward centrist politics has degrees in history and philosophy. His interests include, besides history and philosophy, human rights issues, freedom of choice, religion, and the precarious dichotomy of freedom of speech and intolerance. He brings a slightly different perspective to his writing, being that he is neither a follower of an Abrahamic faith nor an atheist but a polytheist, a modern-day Heathen who follows the customs and traditions of his Norse ancestors. He maintains his own blog, A Heathen’s Day, which deals with Heathen and Pagan matters, and Mos Maiorum Foundation www.mosmaiorum.org, dedicated to ethnic religion. He has also contributed to NewsJunkiePost, GodsOwnParty and Pagan+Politics.