Desperate to carve out at least a few black voters, Donald Trump's
campaign yesterday issued a statement saying Trump now believes President Obama
was born in the United States
, after years of vociferously questioning that acknowledged fact.
Problem: The statement followed an interview with the Washington Post earlier in the day in which he refused to acknowledge the president's birthplace.
Result, probably: Trump wins. My scheduled e-mail news blasts all headlined, based on the campaign's statement, that Trump believed Obama was born in the United States. He has still never said that. And the campaign has furiously tried to gin up the idea that Hillary Clinton
was the mother of the "birther" movement, not Donald Trump.
All this prompted some fairly remarkable phrasing from the New York Times,
which has done a lousy job of presidential coverage with its obsession with the picayune on Hillary Clinton and lack of vigor in pursuing Trump's foundation, business ties and general dishonesty.
The Times headline didn't fall into the trap that snared many other news organizations:
Donald Trump Again Won’t Acknowledge Obama Was Born in U.S.
Then this, with emphasis supplied:
Late Thursday, in an effort at damage control, a Trump spokesman issued a statement saying that “Mr. Trump believes that President Obama was born in the United States.”
But the statement, by Jason Miller, a senior communications adviser, goes on to falsely blame Hillary Clinton for starting rumors about Mr. Obama’s birth in the 2008 campaign, and it then called her “weak” for not getting the question answered.
The statement actually credits Mr. Trump for settling the issue, saying — again falsely — that he “obtained” Mr. Obama’s birth certificate, which the president released in 2011.
Experience to date suggests another win for Trump, or at least no damage. The shape of the race is well established. He's a change agent. Nothing moves those who believe that. She's old news and untrustworthy (thanks both to her own misjudgments and heavy assists from the likes of the New York Times). The small slice of voters who might swing the election may gravitate in sufficient numbers to the third and fourth party candidates to produce a reality show presidency. The polling trends are not promising
for those who consider this possibility with horror.
Those symbolic protests about what the flag and National Anthem represent? They night grow more compelling in 2017.
UPDATE: Backed by an array of military people who back him, Trump declared this morning, "Barack Obama was born in the United States. Period."
He said this after the bodacious lie that Hillary Clinton started the birther controversy and he "finished" it. He is a lying sack of ****.
Hillary Clinton, in case anyone should notice, said Trump owed an apology for propagating the "outrageous lie" for so long.
He's a stone cold liar,
says Josh Marshall.