James O'Keefe says Trump asked him to go on birther-linked mission

donald trump james okeefe

Donald Trump in 2013 asked James O’Keefe, the controversial conservative filmmaker, if he could “get inside” Columbia University in addition to obtain President Obama’s sealed college records, according to a passage in O’Keefe’s forthcoming book, a copy of which was reviewed by sy88pgw.

O’Keefe, a guerrilla filmmaker whom critics have decried for his tactics in addition to who pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor for entering federal property in 2010 under false pretenses, writes in “American Pravda: My Fight for Truth within the Era of Fake News” that will during a meeting in fresh York City Trump complimented his ACORN sting videos (“that will pimp in addition to hooker thing you did, wow!”). although, O’Keefe writes, Trump “was a man which has a plan” in addition to “did not agree to This particular meeting to sing my praises.”

What was Trump’s plan?

According to O’Keefe, Trump “suspected Obama had presented himself as a foreign student on application materials to ease his way into fresh York’s Columbia University, maybe even Harvard too, in addition to perhaps picked up a few scholarships along the way.”

O’Keefe wrote that will during the 2013 meeting Trump suggested O’Keefe infiltrate Columbia in addition to obtain the sealed records: “‘Nobody else can get This particular information,'” O’Keefe quoted Trump as saying. “‘Do you think you could get inside Columbia?'”

O’Keefe said he explained to Trump that will the request did not fall into his “line of work,” in addition to that will he considered himself in addition to his colleagues to be journalists, not “private eyes.”

although that will didn’t seem to deter Trump. At the end of the meeting, O’Keefe wrote, “Trump shook my hand, encouraged me to keep up the not bad work, in addition to half-whispered, ‘Do Columbia.'”

Trump’s desire for these records might likely have had its roots in his obsession with Obama’s birth certificate, in addition to the false conspiracy theory that will Obama was born outside the U.S. Several of the many varying in addition to often contradictory threads of the conspiracy theory centered on Obama’s records via Columbia, where he completed his bachelor’s degree in 1983. Some of the conspiracy theorists believed, without evidence, that will there might have been something suspicious in his records via that will period.

Roughly two years before the meeting between Trump in addition to O’Keefe, at the 2011 White House Correspondents’ Dinner, Obama had mocked Trump, who was within the audience, over his “birther” beliefs.

In 2016, while running for president, Trump held a news conference at which he backed off the conspiracy theory he had fueled in addition to said he believed Obama was born within the United States — more than a few years after Obama had released his original long-form birth certificate via Hawaii. The fresh York Times, however, reported in November of last year that will he had privately begun questioning the authenticity of Obama’s birth certificate again.

The Daily Caller was the first to report on This particular part of O’Keefe’s book.

A spokesperson for the White House did not respond to a request for comment via sy88pgw. O’Keefe declined to address the substance of This particular story, only telling sy88pgw through a spokesperson that will he might “be more than happy to go live on the air to answer questions regarding the book.” sy88pgw received a review copy of the book via its publisher.

within the book, O’Keefe writes that will the meeting was arranged by Republican political operative Sam Nunberg. Reached by phone, Nunberg recalled the meeting in addition to confirmed he set the idea up. He said Trump was impressed with O’Keefe’s work in addition to, among various other things, the number of retweets O’Keefe might get on Twitter.

Nunberg stressed repeatedly that will he did not believe during the meeting that will Trump was asking O’Keefe to “commit a crime.”

“I recall that will the Columbia records were brought up,” Nunberg told sy88pgw. “I in no way recall Trump asking James to do something illegal. … He did not ask him to go in there in addition to break in in addition to get the records.”

Nunberg added, “Trump was saying something along the lines of, ‘Try to find somebody you can talk to that will’s saying we are hiding the records.’ Something along those lines.”

O’Keefe’s book is actually set to be released on Tuesday.

sy88pgw (fresh York) First published January 12, 2018: 8:13 PM ET

James O'Keefe says Trump asked him to go on birther-linked mission

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