When Donald Trump teased Fox News viewers with a "gigantic" bombshell of a disclosure about President Barack Obama that could potentially alter the course of the election, the media was expecting at least something. Anything, really.
And on Wednesday, they got absolutely, literally nothing at all.
Speculation about Trump's "bombshell" had reached a fever pitch Wednesday morning after gossip surfaced about a nameless old Obama college buddy who was allegedly prepared to swear that the president used to sell cocaine. Other blogs speculated that Trump may have unearthed divorce papers drawn up by Michelle Obama during a rocky point in their relationship.
It turns out there's not a lick of truth to any of that. In a video published on YouTube Wednesday afternoon, Trump offered to buy Obama's college and passport records with a $5 million donation to the charity of Obama's choice.
"I'm very honored to have gotten him to release his long-form brith certificate, or whatever it may be," Trump said in his "gigantic" bombshell announcement video published Wednesday. "Now, many, many people have questions, and very serious questions. I have a deal for the president. A deal that I don't believe he can refuse, and I hope he doesn't."
Trump went on to demand that Obama turn over "his college transcripts and applications" and "his passport applications and records," after which Trump promised to write a check for $5 million to the charity of the president's choice. "Inner-city children in Chicago, American Cancer Society, AIDS research -- anything he wants," Trump said. "A check, immediately, for $5 million."
The millionaire real estate mogul and longtime conspiracy theorist was personally mocked by Obama during the 2011 White House Correspondent's Dinner, an event hallmarked by traditionally satirical presentations.
"I know that he's taken some flak lately, but no one is happier, no one is prouder to put this birth certificate matter to rest than the Donald," Obama said, mere days after releasing his long-form birth certificate. "And that's because he can finally get back to focusing on the issues that matter -- like, did we fake the moon landing? What really happened in Roswell? And where are Biggie and Tupac?"
Since then, Trump has campaigned for Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, and the candidate personally appeared with him as Trump announced his endorsement. Trump also claimed that Republicans almost gave him a speaking role at the Republican National Convention too, but it was canceled at the last moment. He was in town during the convention anyway, attending a dinner held in his honor as recipient of the 2012 "Statesman of the Year" award, given out by the Sarasota Repulican Party.
Confronted by reporters earlier this year about his willing association with Trump, Romney said he doesn't agree with every single opinion held by "all the people who support me," and added: "But I need to get to 50.1 percent or more [of the electorate] and I'm appreciative to have the help of a lot of good people."
Reacting to that exchange, Obama campaign spokesperson Stephanie Cutter rebuked the duo's strange alliance. "Mitt Romney’s continued embrace of Donald Trump and refusal to condemn his disgraceful conspiracy theories demonstrates his complete lack of moral leadership," she said in May. "If Mitt Romney lacks the backbone to stand up to a charlatan like Donald Trump because he’s so concerned about lining his campaign’s pockets, what does that say about the kind of president he would be?"
Courts have repeatedly ruled against so-called "birther" legal challenges to the president's legitimately, and Hawaii officials have certified all along that the president released his actual birth certificate years before seeking the nation's highest office.
This video was published to YouTube on October 24, 2012.