Donald Trump Wants to See Barack Obama's Long-Form Birth Certificate

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
March 24 2011 11:35 AM

Donald Trump Wants to See Barack Obama's Long-Form Birth Certificate

I keep trying to get out... they keep pulling me back in . I'm not a regular watcher of the View, so I originally missed the lengthy, mind-boggling discussion that its hosts had with Donald Trump over Trump's belief that President Obama must reveal his long-form birth certificate.

David Weigel David Weigel

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter. 

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Trump does not practice Orthodox Birtherism, the belief that no proof can possibly exist to validate Obama's existence. He's a Reform Birther -- "I really believe there's a birth certificate," he said, but the doubts are a "terrible pall." His theory: "There's something on that birth certificate that doesn't like."

Unfortunately, his relationship to facts isn't all that different than what you regularly see from birthers. "Show me a picture [of Obama]," he says. "I've seen 14-year-old, I've seen 13-year-old. I haven't seen early pictures."

Trump has never seen the April 23, 2008 cover of Time .


See what happened there? One of the reasons Trump has doubts about Obama's citizenship is that he's never seen a photo of the young Obama or heard from people who knew him. Except there are school records and photos of the young Obama all over the internet. This is the kind of thing that's easy to prove, if you are more interested in proving it than in protecting your bias.

Later, he doubts the two 1961 newspaper clippings announcing the birth of Obama, because he's "seen fraud" before -- a rationale that I could use to develop a theory that "Donald Trump" is actually a PCP-addicted gardener, on the run from the Federales for a crime he didn't commit, who kidnapped the real Donald Trump in 2004 and stole his identity.

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter.