Donald Trump says Hillary Clinton started it — as in, the birther movement. Yes, the very conspiracy-driven movement that launched his national political career. Not stopping there, his campaign claims Trump is the one who brought it to an end.
"Hillary Clinton’s campaign first raised this issue to smear then-candidate Barack Obama in her very nasty, failed 2008 campaign for President," the campaign said in a statement. It went on to say that Trump "was finally able to bring this ugly incident to its conclusion by successfully compelling President Obama to release his birth certificate."
This isn’t the first time Trump has blamed Clinton for the birther movement. He tweeted it in 2015:
Just remember, the birther movement was started by Hillary Clinton in 2008. She was all in!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 23, 2015
But there is particularly laughable irony to Trump calling out Clinton for a movement he has continuously propped up — as recently as this week, when he told the Washington Post he wasn’t ready to answer whether he believes Obama was born in Hawaii.
When asked about it in January 2016, he told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer, "Who knows about Obama?":
WOLF BLITZER: His mother was a US citizen born in Kansas, so was he a natural born citizen?
DONALD TRUMP: Who knows? Who knows? Who cares right now? We're talking about something else, okay? I'm going to have my own theory on Obama. Someday I'll write a book, I'll do another book that will do successfully.
And for someone who is now calling the movement "ugly," Trump has a long — and heavily documented — history of promoting this conspiracy theory. Here is a brief rundown of Trump’s tweets on birtherism:
Let's take a closer look at that birth certificate. @BarackObama was described in 2003 as being "born in Kenya." http://t.co/vfqJesJL— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 18, 2012
An 'extremely credible source' has called my office and told me that @BarackObama's birth certificate is a fraud.— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 6, 2012
Why do the Republicans keep apologizing on the so called "birther" issue? No more apologies--take the offensive!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 27, 2012
Wake Up America! See article: "Israeli Science: Obama Birth Certificate is a Fake" http://t.co/f7esUdSz— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 13, 2012
How amazing, the State Health Director who verified copies of Obama’s "birth certificate" died in plane crash today. All others lived— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 12, 2013
Attention all hackers: You are hacking everything else so please hack Obama's college records (destroyed?) and check "place of birth"— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 6, 2014