Billionaire Donald Trump, who repeatedly has challenged Barack Obama's eligibility to be president, is doubling down on those remarks, telling radio show host Sean Hannity that it would be very interesting to see Obama's college applications.
He said on yesterday's show that probable GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney should demand to see Obama's records in return for meeting Democrat demands to release his tax records. Trump said Obama probably is more scared of releasing his own documentation than he is of releasing all the information about the Fast and Furious gun scandal perpetrated by his administration.
Trump's comments come in the wake of another news conference by Sheriff Joe Arpaio of Maricopa County, Ariz., on Obama's eligibility. His Cold Case Posse team of investigators released documentation Tuesday they believe is proof the Obama birth certification posted online by the White House in 2011 is fake.
"The fact is Sheriff Arpaio is, in my opinion, correct," Trump told Hannity. "Nobody was ever in the hospital by the name of his mother … and a lot of crazy things."
He pointed out, however, the nation's unwillingness to address the issue, including the role of the mainstream media in attacking anyone who challenges Obama.
"If that were a conservative, let's say a George Bush or somebody, he would have been out of office already," he told Hannity.
"Nobody has more sealed records than this president. So many of his applications … are sealed. He spent $3 million to keep everything sealed. You can't find out anything about his college. I'm not talking about his marks. I'm talking about his application. It would be so interesting to see," Trump said.
Obama's college records for Occidental, Columbia and Harvard all remain out of the public view, protected by legions of attorneys fighting in court against any release.
He noted that Obama supporters, including news media, "label anybody that brings up the fact that he wasn't born here or whatever – they label those people as morons or worse, as insane people."
"But you look at the facts … the fact is Sheriff Arpaio is, in my opinion, correct."
He also ridiculed the idea that it was a "mistake" that led a book publisher to promote – for years – Obama as an author who was born in Kenya.
"The word 'Kenya' doesn't get messed up with the word 'United States,'" he said.
Listen to the interview:
Trump told Hannity that if Romney demanded Obama's records in exchange for his tax information, "all this talk about tax returns would stop."
"The last thing Obama wants to do is show his college applications, how he got in, his place of birth. Sheriff Arpaio, whether you like him or not, is a serious person. He did a major investigation. The investigation is horrendous as to its results and what it shows," he said.
Arpaio said this week, as WND reported, that the investigation results should be forwarded to the federal government after Cold Case Posse lead investigator Mike Zullo said new information confirms the document presented to the American public in April 2011 is fraudulent.
Arpaio told WND he intends to move the investigation and the new information to a higher authority within the federal government because of what he calls an imminent threat to national security and U.S. immigration laws. The threat is posed by a flaw in Hawaii's law discovered by his investigators that allows a foreigner to obtain a Hawaii birth certificate.
"Although I am having a difficult time deciding who to forward this information to given the fact that the obvious choices report directly to the president, I cannot stand by and hold on to information that threatens to weaken national security," Arpaio said.
Arpaio said he intends on keeping a case file open if more information surfaces or if federal authorities decide to ignore the case.
Zullo explained that along with new information discovered regarding the birth certificate since the posse's March 1 press conference, his team has discovered Hawaii provides easy access to a birth certificate, even if the child wasn't born in the state.
Under Hawaii Revised Statute 338-17.8, a person only has to be an established resident of Hawaii, not necessarily a U.S. citizen, and pay taxes there for one year to be able to register an out-of-state or foreign-born person with an official Hawaii birth certificate.
"If a nation's security is only as strong as its weakest link, then America may be in serious trouble," Arpaio said in a statement. "Hawaii may be our weakest link and could have a serious impact on our nation’s immigration policy."
Among the new findings presented by Zullo:
- The sheriff's investigators have learned of a birth certificate coding system that indicates the White House document has been altered.
- An interview with the Hawaii official who allegedly signed the Obama document in 1961, Verna K.L. Lee, provided further confirmation of the coding anomalies.
- Investigators were troubled to find key information missing on the verification document Hawaii provided to Arizona's secretary of state in May.
- Hawaii's deputy attorney general, Jill T. Nagamine, confirm the state has a birth document on file for Obama. But she would not confirm on the record that the White House document matched what was on file with the Hawaii Department of Health.
- The sheriff’s investigators interviewed three persons of interest who have provided additional information in the case.
Arpaio's investigation was initiated last October when 250 Maricopa County citizens approached him for help because they believed the electronic document presented by the White House to the American public was a forgery. Arpaio said he went ahead with the probe with the intent of being able to clear the president and put the matter to rest. But he explained the investigation found too many inconsistencies on the birth certificate.
"We also looked into the president's Selective Service registration card and found that it, too, appeared to be fraudulent," Arpaio said.
Investigators since then have traveled to Hawaii and have interviewed more witnesses, the sheriff said.
Trump earlier told CNN's Wolf Blitzer that if his network reported accurately on Obama's eligibility, its ratings might be better.
"Obama does not like the issue of where he was born," he told Blitzer. "There's something that bothers Obama very much. I will tell you: It's not an issue that he likes talking about, so what he does is use reverse psychology on people like you … He does not like that issue because it's hitting very close to home. You know it, and he knows it – but you don't report it accurately."
Trump then became the target of a conversation between former New York Gov. David Paterson, now a talk radio host, and NBC Chief White House Correspondent Chuck Todd.
Paterson suggested it's possible Obama is ineligible and "got away" with it.
Paterson also linked the idea of treason with Obama's actions.
The two were discussing how Romney should have distanced himself more from Trump and his view of Obama's eligibility.
"Even if he wasn't born in the United States at this point," Paterson said. "It's kind of like he got away with it."
He continued: "A lot of people get away with a lot of things."
Paterson compared Obama's actions to those of Richard Nixon.
"We learned later that Nixon spied on Johnson's Paris peace talks," Paterson said. "That was actually an act of … uh ... I mean it was against the interests of the U.S. government. You've got to say that before you would say it's treason. But he got away with it. Decided it wasn't a good thing to bring up at that particular time. Not only did he get away with it, he won the election."
Trump, whose publicly expressed doubts about Obama likely were part of the reason that the White House released the online image of a Hawaiian birth certificate for Obama in April 2011, said it was the report of the 1991 Obama book bio stating he was born in Kenya that revived the issue for him.
"It was brought up by somebody releasing a statement from the 1990s by Barack Obama, when he was not even thinking in terms of the presidency, and strongly stated that he was born in Kenya and that he was raised in Indonesia," Trump told Fox News host Greta Van Susteren.
He said it appears Obama himself made the Kenya claim.
"He made that statement himself. And the publisher wrote it, and he wrote it down, and he – it was – it was going to be part of a brochure to sell a book. That's a pretty strong statement. And that was made by somebody that wasn't running for president and probably had no intention of ever running for president. So I think it probably a very honest statement."
Trump continued: "I can tell you that this is not an issue, despite what he says, that President Obama likes. This is hitting very close to home. This is not something that he enjoys."
As WND reported in March 2011, Trump suggested Obama's presidency could be "illegal" if legitimate proof is not provided demonstrating he is indeed a "natural born citizen" of the U.S.
Trump also wondered why no doctors or nurses have come forward to announce their presence at Obama's birth.
In March and April of 2011, Trump staged a weeks-long public campaign questioning Obama's eligibility to be president – and he rose to the top of the pool of potential candidates for the 2012 GOP nomination as a result – saying he believes the "birth certificate" released by the White House is forged.
"I always said I wanted to know if it was real," Trump told WND senior reporter Jerome Corsi, author of the best-seller, "Where's the Birth Certificate? The Case That Barack Obama is Not Eligible to be President."
During their conversation, Trump told Corsi his own computer expert told him that the image posted online was a computer-generated document.