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Donald Trump to join 'Fox and Friends' on Mondays

The 'birther' issue seems unlikely to vanish as a Republican talking point anytime soon now that Donald Trump will hold forth on Fox News Channel each week.

April 01, 2011|By James Oliphant, Washington Bureau
  • Donald Trump has been loud and clear on the you-can't-kill-it-now-matter-how-hard-you-try matter of President Obama's origins.
Donald Trump has been loud and clear on the you-can't-kill-it-now-matter-how-hard-you-try… (Timothy A. Clary / AFP/Getty…)

Reporting from Washington — The heartburn that a prospective Donald Trump presidential bid gives to other Republican candidates will now be delivered on a weekly basis.

The bombastic real estate mogul will now be joining the morning show "Fox and Friends" every Monday, the program announced.

"The Donald now makes his voice loud and clear every Monday on Fox," asserts a promo, which was first reported by Mediaite, a news media website.

Lately, Trump has been loud and clear on the you-can't-kill-it-no-matter-how-hard-you-try matter of President Obama's origins, producing his own birth certificate and daring the president to do the same.

He nearly sent Fox News talker Bill O'Reilly into orbit in an appearance earlier this week on the issue, which O'Reilly called a conspiracy that has been thoroughly debunked.

"People have birth certificates. He doesn't have a birth certificate," Trump said on O'Reilly's show. "Now, he may have one but there is something on that birth certificate — maybe religion, maybe it says he's a Muslim, I don't know. Maybe he doesn't want that. Or, he may not have one."

"But I will tell you this. If he wasn't born in this country it's one of the great scams of all time," Trump remarked.

"Absolutely," O'Reilly replied, "but I don't think that's the case," – and went on to essentially call Trump a huckster. "I think it's provocative. I don't think you believe that either. You get a lot of attention raising the question."

"Two weeks ago I felt like probably he was born in the country," Trump said. "I'm telling you it's changed. I have seen too many things."

Of course, this was the same program where Trump said he has "a great, big, fat, beautiful heart."

Most mainstream Republicans would love to see the birther issue dead and buried before the 2012 elections, but Trump doesn't want to appear to let go. And the "Fox and Friends" pulpit will allow him to say provocative things early in the week, which is certain to draw attention from presidential contenders such as Tim Pawlenty, who not only now has to compete for oxygen with the say-anything Donald, but also with unrepentant bomb-throwers such as Michele Bachmann and Newt Gingrich.

Oddly enough, Trump is gaining a Fox News platform when some of his possible rivals for the GOP nomination have lost theirs. The network cut ties with Gingrich and former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum when they became clear about their presidential aspirations, and is poised to do the same with Mike Huckabee and Sarah Palin if the time arises.

james.oliphant@latimes.com

@jamesoliphant

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