Donald Trump may have been a loud proponent of the “birther” issue a few years back, but his running mate Mike Pence is confidant President Obama was born on U.S. soil.
“I believe Barack Obama was born in Hawaii,” vice presidential nominee Mike Pence said to reporters on his campaign plane Wednesday, NBC News reported. “I accept his birthplace. I just don’t know where he’s coming from on foreign policy and on economics and on Obamacare.”
The theory that Obama was not eligible for the presidency because he was not a natural-born citizen grew strong in the 2012 presidential race, with Trump being a strong supporter of the movement. Even after the White House released Obama’s long-form birth certificate, Trump questioned its validity.
Critics said Trump’s position was racially motivated and Pence was asked if the GOP nominee should apologize for his stance.
“I think Donald Trump’s record both as a businessman and as a political leader and a patron in supporting minority efforts, and particularly supporting the advancement of the African-American community, really speaks for itself,” he said.
Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly asked Trump on “The O’Reilly Factor” Tuesday if he thought his “birther” position hurt him the the African-American voters.
“I don’t know. I have no idea. I don’t even talk about it anymore Bill because I don’t bother talking about it,” Trump replied.
Former Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson thought an apology from Trump would be “a good idea.” The retired neurosurgeon and Trump surrogate was asked if an apology for “birther” comments would help black voters be more willing to listen to Trump.
— CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) September 6, 2016
“I think that would be a good idea, absolutely,” he told CNN on Tuesday. “I suggest that on all sides. Let’s get all of the hate and rancor out of the way so that we can actually discuss the issues.”
Trump has not indicated that he will retract or apologize for his past remarks on the issue but Pence and Carson may have just added to the pressure.
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