Donald Trump spoke at his new hotel, just blocks away from the White House in Washington DC. He was joined today by several military veterans at his Trump International Hotel which is also known as the Old Post Office Building. One of the many veterans on hand praised the candidate’s “stamina” and “temperament” just days after Democrat Hillary Clinton was seen to collapse after unexpectedly leaving a 9/11 commemoration in New York City at Ground Zero. Her diagnosis of pneumonia, which had been concealed from the public, was revealed by the doctor who made the diagnosis. Clinton convalesced until yesterday when she returned to the campaign trail.

At least 17 Medal of Honor recipients were at the event where Trump praised veterans' national service. Among were retired U.S. Navy SEAL Mike Thornton, who said, “This election means so much. We do not need any more bureaucratic leadership from Washington, D.C. We need true leadership from the top. Mr. Trump has never failed in anything because he listens to his advisers, he listens to his people. For the last eight years, our President hasn’t listened to anybody. And that’s the reason we’ve lost CIA Directors, we’ve lost Secretary of Defense and many many general officers have dropped out and resigned because of his leadership. We cannot stand for four more years of leadership like that. We need somebody who’s gonna lead from the front like Donald Trump.”

Lt. Gen. Tom McInerney, USAF (ret) said on stage, “It’s very simple. We, our warriors here, are supporting Mr. Trump because he has the only budget, the only economic plan, that can rebuild the military. If you elect Hillary Clinton, you’re gonna get 1 percent growth, you’re going to get 3.5 to 6 percent growth with this (Trump’s) administration because he knows how to take the handcuffs of America’s economy.” There were also several generals who have endorsed Trump. 
 
LA Times reporter Cathleen Decker noted that CNN cut away from coverage of the veterans. Fox News cut away from the audio of the event in order to bring up the "birther" issue.
After the event, CNN's chief national correspondent John King slammed Trump campaign for waiting until the end of paying tribute to veterans to give his "major announcement." "We got played, again, by the Trump campaign, which is what they do," King said on CNN once the event ended. "He got a live event broadcast for some 20 minutes." King said, however, that he meant no disrespect to veterans and that voters would make their decision about Trump this November.
 
"We all got Rickrolled and played," said CNN's Jake Tapper

Trump used the occasion to discard his previous doubts about the birthplace of President Barack Obama. Today, Trump said, “President Barack Obama was born in the United States, period,” and added, “Now, we all want to get back to making America strong and great again.” No further explanation came from Trump, nor the apology that major media organizations and Democrats had expected.

“Hillary Clinton and her campaign of 2008 started the birther controversy,” Trump said. “I finished it.”  It was in April 2011, that POLITICO reported that it was Democrats who initiated the “birther” issue during the 2008 election as Clinton was losing to then-Sen. Obama.

Representatives of the media broke out into near-pandemonium when Trump walked away from the podium. Trump supporters at the event turned to the reporters and chanted “USA! USA! USA!” When Trump took a tour of the new hotel, a television camera followed.

Major media outlets were unstinting in the criticism of Trump. The Chicago Tribune ran an opinion article entitled, “Trump uses veterans as cover while he lies about ‘birther’ scandal,” while an article at Slate bore the headline: “Trump Lies about Birtherism are the New Birtherism.”

However, one of Trump’s sharpest critics, Ben Shapiro of The Daily Wire, tweeted: “Going back to birtherism? Man, Hillary and her media lackeys are REALLY desperate.”

Alex Ferrer complimented Trump on Fox News and said of the "birther" issue, "I think this definitely puts this to bed,” and said it  was "a really smart move" to get airtime.



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Spero News editor Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat, who also worked as a democracy advocate and election observer in Latin America. His first novel 'Shaken Earth', is available at Amazon.

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