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Donald Trump gives Mitt Romney his endorsement
Is Donald Trump shaking Mitt's hand ... or Milton's? (Steve Marcus/Reuters)
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Self-proclaimed birther Donald Trump is now so doubtful of Mitt Romney's birthplace that he's sent a team of his own investigators to Michigan in hopes of getting to the bottom of the issue.

That's according to Trump himself, who, in an interview with NBC, warned his investigators just might uncover "one of the greatest cons in the history of politics and beyond."

"I have people that have been studying it and they cannot believe what they're finding," Trump said an interview that aired Friday morning.

Asked if he has assigned people specifically to search in Michigan, Trump said, "Absolutely."

Of course, none of that is true. (Or, as I should perhaps say, Trump sent as many investigators to Michigan as he did to Hawaii.)

What is true is that Trump—who will campaign with Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich on Tuesday in Las Vegas—has held Romney to a much lower standard than President Obama when it comes to proving his Americanism ... and even his real name. As The Boston Globe's Joan Vennochi wrote last year:

IF DONALD Trump is so interested in birth certificates, he should ask Republican rival Mitt Romney to produce his.

That could finally solve the mild Mitt-stery surrounding Romney’s given name.

His first name is “Willard,’’ after the hotel magnate J. Willard Marriott, his father’s best friend.

His middle name comes from his father’s cousin, who played quarterback for the Chicago Bears from 1925 to 1929. That cousin’s name was “Milton’’ and his nickname was “Mitt’’ — a totally understandable preference for a football player or a presidential candidate. But what does the birth certificate belonging to the presidential candidate actually state?

Four years ago, I asked Romney spokesman Eric Fehrnstrom to settle the matter.

“It’s Willard Mitt Romney on the birth certificate,’’ he replied, via e-mail.

Could I see it? I asked. “Sure. He was born in Detroit. City Hall should have it,’’ he e-mailed back.

Birth records are restricted in Michigan and only a person or parent named on the record, or a legal guardian or representative can request a copy. “That shouldn’t be a problem for an old reporter like you,’’ Fehrnstrom responded. It was.

But even though President Obama has gone way beyond anything Mitt Romney has ever been asked to do, releasing everything but his mother's amniotic fluid to document his true birthplace of Hawaii, birthers like Trump remains unconvinced. Yet The Donald has raised no questions about Romney, whose father was born in Mexico and whose birth certificate has never been seen by the public.

Now, don't get me wrong. I'm not a Mitt Romney birther (though I do wonder if we should start calling him Milton). But isn't it pathetic that Romney doesn't even have the political courage to keep his distance from the biggest and most offensive Obama birther of them all?

Originally posted to The Jed Report on Fri May 25, 2012 at 08:06 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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