On Friday, Donald Trump attempted to close the book on his involvement with the Birther movement. In doing so, he simply declared, “President Barack Obama was born in the United States, period.” The media isn’t buying this attempt to wipe the slate clean, and this includes CNN’s Jake Tapper, who called the event a “political Rick-roll.”
Donald Trump’s campaign had attempted to claim that he put his birther claims to bed in 2011, but evidence shows how Trump still wasn’t sold on Obama’s citizenship in 2014. To diffuse the situation, Trump did what he did best — gave a speech. The real estate mogul claims to now fully believe Obama was born in the U.S., and he’d prefer to now Make America Great Again. He then passed the mic to several veterans on hand who support him, which amounts to closing the book on a years-long issue in half a minute.
Some media personalities are calling this out as another example of Trump’s refusal to own up on his previous (and continuing) stances. Tapper quickly compared Trump’s dismissal as “a political Rick-roll”:
“While these American heroes are, you know, people that we should all show reverence and respect, they are much greater men than Rick Astley, it’s hard to imagine this as anything other than a political Rick-roll.”
Tapper is referring to the meme of Internet users expecting one thing and then receiving quite another thing with a showing of Rick Astley’s 1987 masterpiece, “Never Gonna Give You Up.” Though many will tip their hat to Tapper’s comparison, he makes a good point. Some people expected Trump to address the Birther conspiracy theory more thoroughly, and that didn’t happen. Tapper conceded, “It was very clever on one level. On another level, it does speak to the integrity of the Trump campaign.”
You can watch Tapper’s full comments below.