Thinking I must be missing something here, I checked with a couple of top GOP operatives. “I got nothin’,” one says. Another offers the Godfather theory for dealing with Trump: “Yes, it reinforces the ‘I have wealthy friends’ stereotype,” the Republican strategist says. “And whenever Trump says something stupid it’s magnified 10-fold, so there are serious downsides to it. But in the end you would rather embrace it—like the Godfather line about keeping your enemies close.”
Maybe so. But Trump has become inextricably linked to the birther movement, and he won’t shut up about it. Just this week, he spoke to the Daily Beast’s Lloyd Grove and after getting the preliminaries out of the way (saying he’s “honored” that Team Romney wants him and his Las Vegas hotel to help fundraise), then Trump “launched into a furious disquisition concerning Obama’s place of birth.” To be clear: Trump wasn’t unwillingly goaded into spouting his Obama-was-born-in-Kenya theories. He practically lead with them.
“Look, it’s very simple,” said Trump, who has spent the past 13 months questioning Obama’s constitutional eligibility to occupy the White House (and only doubled down with his stubborn skepticism after Obama produced a long-form birth certificate, certifying he was born on Aug. 4, 1961, in Hawaii[)], … “A book publisher came out three days ago and said that in his written synopsis of his book,” Trump went on, “he said he was born in Kenya and raised in Indonesia. His mother never spent a day in the hospital.”
Actually, Obama’s literary agency at the time, two decades ago, published a recently discovered catalogue of clients and their projects that included erroneous information about Obama and a prospective book about race that he ended up not writing. An agency assistant back then, Miriam Goderich, said last week that she was mistaken when she wrote that Obama was born in Kenya.
But Trump isn’t buying it.
At what point does Romney throw up his hands and run screaming from this guy? Trump isn’t simply off-message, talking about something other than the economy, he’s dangerously off-message, reminding anyone who will listen that a nontrivial portion of the GOP has been taken over by conspiracy theorist weirdos.
Just so we’re clear, Mitt Romney has welcomed Donald Trump’s racist ass into his open arms, so much so that he’s offering his donors an opportunity to dine with the giant orange moron. At the same time, however, the Romney campaign is laying the groundwork for an effort to reach out to black voters:
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