Two pretty impressive things took place on Friday’s episode of the 2016 Presidential campaign. First, Donald Trump finally announced that he was 100% sure that President Barack Obama was indeed an American-born-American. Secondly, Mr. Trump trolled the media so hard that he instantly became an even bigger Rockstar among his already adoring fans.
How did Mr. Trump “troll” the media?
The Trump campaign leaked news on Thursday evening that he would be making an announcement about President Obama’s birth certificate at his planned Friday press conference. Hearing this, the entire media machine erupted and every outlet then decided that they would run Trump’s event LIVE on their networks. LIVE!
When the program began, the Trump campaign marched out military hero after military hero offering their support for Mr. Trump’s campaign. For more than half an hour a cavalcade of military stars from generals, to war heroes, to the families of our fallen expressed their support for Trump’s candidacy! It was TV gold. It was campaign gold. The media has been telling Americans for months that Mr. Trump’s lack of foreign policy experience terrifies our military leaders, and on Friday the media proved their own narrative wrong when they broadcast so many military icons arguing just the opposite.
Trump's campaign hyped up change on birther issue. And now that TV networks carrying it live, we've had 20 mins of veterans endorsing Trump
— Jeremy Diamond (@JDiamond1) September 16, 2016
About halfway through the spectacle the media realized what the Trump campaign had done, but by then it was too late — America had a new, broader picture of Donald Trump. Some networks, like CNN, pulled back from the parade of endorsements, but they didn’t leave the scene. Instead, they pushed the military supporters to the background while they discussed the Trump campaign’s ethics, only going back to the event when the candidate himself walked out onto the stage.
In fact, over at CNN, Jake Tapper got so angry that he argued that this spoke to the Trump campaign’s “integrity.”
Tapper should have waited before making his derisive comments because just a few minutes later Mr. Trump would indeed give the media what they were looking for.
“I am grateful for the growing support of highly respected retired generals and admirals who have been so successful in defending our country.
Her (Hillary Clinton’s) campaign of 2008 started the ‘birther’ controversy, I finished it. I finished it. President Barack Obama was born in the United States. Period. Now we all want to get back to making America strong and great again.”
Yes. Donald Trump just said that Barack Obama was an American born in the United States and yes, he blamed Hillary Clinton for the entire “birther” movement. Epic.
Here is the campaign’s full statement on the issue:
“Hillary Clinton’s campaign first raised this issue to smear then-candidate Barack Obama in her very nasty, failed 2008 campaign for President. This type of vicious and conniving behavior is straight from the Clinton Playbook. As usual, however, Hillary Clinton was too weak to get an answer. Even the MSNBC show Morning Joe admits that it was Clinton’s henchmen who first raised this issue, not Donald J. Trump.
In 2011, Mr. Trump was finally able to bring this ugly incident to its conclusion by successfully compelling President Obama to release his birth certificate. Mr. Trump did a great service to the President and the country by bringing closure to the issue that Hillary Clinton and her team first raised. Inarguably, Donald J. Trump is a closer. Having successfully obtained President Obama’s birth certificate when others could not, Mr. Trump believes that President Obama was born in the United States.
Mr. Trump is now totally focused on bringing jobs back to America, defeating radical Islamic terrorism, taking care of our veterans, introducing school choice opportunities and rebuilding and making our inner cities safe again.” – Jason Miller, Senior Communications Advisor
Friday was absolute proof that Donald Trump has complete mastery of our national media. He purchased an hour and a half of FREE national advertising… and he didn’t spend a dime. He has the media eating out of his hand. He knows the direction they’re moving before they even seem to. Chris Cilliza of the Washington Post said it like this:
The most amazing thing was that it took the Republican nominee 29 minutes to deliver those three sentences. The event was slated to start at 10 am eastern. It wasn’t until 11 am that it actually began — with Trump touting his new hotel and proclaiming that it is likely to be one of the best in the world. He then ceded the stage to a parade of decorated military veterans who testified to his toughness, his judgment and his temperament.
Cable networks seemed to not know what to do. All three of them — MSNBC , Fox News and CNN — stayed with the generals’s testimonials for the better part of 20 minutes. That’s a remarkable amount of free cable time to dedicate to a series of surrogates testifying to how great one of the two party nominees is.
The networks eventually cut away from the generals but then Trump was back at the mic — roughly 90 minutes after his event was originally slated to start. Meaning that he drew an hour and a half of live coverage for:
- An empty podium
- A series of military endorsements/testimonials
- Three sentences from Trump himself — one that is totally false and two others that represent atotal reversal from a position he held as recently as, well,Thursday night.
Many members of the media were unhappy with what happened on Friday, Hillary Clinton argued that the press conference was a complete disgrace, and Democrats across the nation quipped that it was proof that Trump was untrustworthy. However, what most Americans saw was this: many important former military leaders support Donald Trump and whatever he says is important enough for the media to spend an hour and a half of live TV waiting to hear it. This was a big win for Mr. Trump, no matter how you look at it.
By the way… Hillary Clinton was not amused.
What Trump just did is a disgrace.
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) September 16, 2016