|Birth Name:||Donald John Trump|
|Birth Date:||June 14, 1946|
|Birth Place:||Queens, New York City,|
New York, U.S.
|Salary:||$60 million (2010–11)|
|Networth:||$2.9 to $7 billion (2012)|
|Alma Mater:||Fordham University|
University of Pennsylvania (B.S.)
|Party:||Independent (2011–present) |
Republican (1987–99; 2009–11)
Reform Party (1999–2000)
|Spouse:||Ivana Trump (1977–92)|
Marla Maples (1993–99)
Melania Trump (2005–present)
|Children:||Donald Trump Jr. (b. 1977)|
Ivanka Trump (b. 1981)
Eric Trump (b. 1984)
Tiffany Trump (b. 1993)
Barron Trump (b. 2006)
|Residence:||Trump Tower, Manhattan|
Donald John Trump, Sr. (born June 14, 1946) is an American business magnate, television personality and author. He is the chairman and president of The Trump Organization and the founder of Trump Entertainment Resorts. Trump's extravagant lifestyle, outspoken manner and role on the NBC reality show The Apprentice have made him a well-known celebrity who was No. 17 on the 2011 Forbes Celebrity 100 list.
Trump is the son of Fred Trump, a New York City real-estate developer. He worked for his father's firm, Elizabeth Trump & Son, while attending the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, and in 1968 officially joined the company. He was given control of the company in 1971 and renamed it The Trump Organization. 
In 2010, Trump expressed an interest in becoming a candidate for President of the United States in the 2012 election.  In May 2011, he announced he would not be a candidate, but a few weeks later he said he had not completely ruled out the possibility. In December 2011, Trump was suggested as a possible Vice Presidential selection by Michele Bachmann. Bachmann has since suspended her presidential campaign.
Trump is a son of Fred Trump and his wife, Mary Anne MacLeod, who married in 1936. His mother was born on the Island of Lewis, off the west coast of Scotland. Donald was one of five children. Donald's oldest brother, Fred Jr., died in 1981 at the age of 43. Trump's paternal grandparents were German immigrants. His grandfather, Frederick Trump (née Freidrich Drumpf), emigrated to the United States in 1885 and became a naturalized American citizen in 1892. Frederick married Elisabeth Christ (October 10, 1880 – June 6, 1966) at Kallstadt, Rheinland-Pfalz, Germany, on August 26, 1902. They had three children.
Trump attended the Kew-Forest School, Forest Hills, New York, as did some of his siblings. At age 13 after having some difficulties there, his parents sent him to the New York Military Academy (NYMA), hoping to direct his energy and assertiveness in a positive manner. At NYMA, in upstate New York, Trump earned academic honors, and played varsity football in 1962, varsity soccer in 1963, and varsity baseball from 1962 to 1964 (baseball captain 1964). The baseball coach, Ted Dobias, a local celebrity for his work with area youth, awarded him the Coach's Award in 1964. Promoted to Cadet Captain-S4 (Cadet Battalion Logistics Officer) in his senior year, Trump and Cadet First Sergeant Jeff Donaldson (NYMA class of 1965; West Point 1969) formed a composite company of cadets, taught them advanced close-order drill, and marched them down Fifth Avenue on Memorial Day, 1964.
Trump attended Fordham University for two years before transferring to the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. He graduated in 1968 with a Bachelor of Science in economics. In his book, Trump: The Art of the Deal, Trump discusses his undergraduate career:
After I graduated from the New York Military Academy in 1964, I flirted briefly with the idea of attending film school... but in the end I decided real estate was a much better business. I began by attending Fordham University... but after two years, I decided that as long as I had to be in college, I might as well test myself against the best. I applied to the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and I got in... I was also very glad to get finished. I immediately moved back home and went to work full time with my father.
Trump is popularly known as The Donald, a nickname given to him by the media after his first wife Ivana Trump, a native of the Czech Republic, referred to him as such in an interview. Trump is also known for his catchphrase, "You're fired!", made popular by his television series The Apprentice. While it has been reported that Trump does not shake hands because of fear of germs, he claims this phobia is "a rumor that the enemies say", and shook hands repeatedly in public during a visit to New Hampshire in April 2011. Trump is a golfer, with a low single-figure handicap. He is a member of the Winged Foot Golf Club in Mamaroneck, New York, and also plays regularly at the other courses he owns and operates.
Trump has stated in interviews that he is a Presbyterian. In April 2011 on Human Events he said that he is "a Presbyterian within the Protestant group". In an April 2011 interview, on the 700 Club, Trump said, "I'm a Protestant, I'm a Presbyterian. And you know I've had a good relationship with the church over the years. I think religion is a wonderful thing. I think my religion is a wonderful religion."  A 2010 article in The Daily Telegraph stated that Trump was Catholic. A February 2011 Politics Daily article described Trump as "apparently a member of the Dutch Reformed Church, which is a Presbyterian denomination". Andrew Cusack in 2008 stated that Donald Trump is a member of New York City's Marble Collegiate Church. Explaining that church's organizational relationships, Cusack says "the Collegiate Reformed Protestant Dutch Church is actually a denomination within a denomination" and that the Collegiate Churches are "now part of the Reformed Church of America". Marble Collegiate Church also states that it is denominationally affiliated with the Reformed Church in America, with the RCA website stating that the RCA has a local church "presbyterian form of government". Trump does not drink alcohol.
Trump married Melania Knauss, his third wife, at the Episcopal church of Bethesda-by-the-Sea, in a "traditional ceremony".   Their son, Barron, was baptized in that church. In September 2010, Trump expressed on Anderson Cooper's show on CNN, his "suspicions of ulterior motives at the imam running the project" known as Park51, claiming the imam was "using religion" (meaning Islam) to get a good price for the real estate. He also appeared on Fox's Hannity, and said much the same. Trump was quoted by the New York Post that, while he "is a 'big believer in freedom of religion,' ... his personal opinion was that the mosque should not be built close to Ground Zero ...". After Trump offered in a letter to buy the two-building site for more than $6 million in order to end the general controversy, the lawyers for the majority stakeholder, according to the Post, criticized "Trump's letter offering to buy the site as a publicity stunt".
Trump's mother, Mary Anne, was born at Tong, Stornoway on the Isle of Lewis in Scotland in 1912. In 1930, aged 18, on holiday in New York, she met Fred Trump and stayed in New York. Born in Queens, New York, Trump has four siblings: two brothers, Fred Jr. (who is deceased) and Robert; and two sisters, Maryanne and Elizabeth. His elder sister, Maryanne Trump Barry, is a federal appeals court judge.
In 1977, Trump married Ivana Zelníčková and together they have three children: Donald Jr. (born December 31, 1977), Ivanka (born October 30, 1981), and Eric (born January 6, 1984). They were divorced in 1992. In 1993, he married Marla Maples and together they had one child, Tiffany (born October 13, 1993). They divorced on June 8, 1999. In a February 2008 interview on ABC's Nightline Trump commented on his ex-wives by saying, "I just know it's very hard for them (Ivana and Marla) to compete because I do love what I do. I really love it."
On April 26, 2004, he proposed to Melania Knauss (Slovenian: Melanija Knavs), a native of Slovenia. Trump and Knauss (who is 24 years Trump's junior) married on January 22, 2005, at Bethesda by the Sea Episcopal Church, on the island of Palm Beach, Florida, followed by a reception at Trump's Mar-A-Lago estate. Melania gave birth to a boy named Barron William Trump, Trump's fifth child, on March 20, 2006.
Trump began his career at his father's company, the Trump Organization, and initially concentrated on his father's preferred field of middle-class rental housing in Brooklyn, Queens, and Staten Island. One of Trump's first projects, while he was still in college, was the revitalization of the foreclosed Swifton Village apartment complex in Cincinnati, Ohio, which his father had purchased for $5.7 million in 1962. Trump became intimately involved in the project, personally flying in for a few days at a time to carry out landscaping and other low-level tasks. After $500,000 investment, Trump successfully turned a 1200-unit complex with a 66 percent vacancy rate to 100 percent occupancy within two years. The Trump Organization sold Swifton Village for $6.75 million in 1972.
In 1971 Trump moved to Manhattan, where he became convinced of the economic opportunity in the city, specifically large building projects in Manhattan that would offer opportunities for earning high profits, utilizing attractive architectural design, and winning public recognition. Trump began by landing the rights to develop the old Penn Central yards on the West Side, then – with the help of a 40-year tax abatement by the financially strained New York City government, which was eager to give tax concessions in exchange for investments at a time of financial crisis – turned the bankrupt Commodore Hotel into a new Grand Hyatt.
He was also instrumental in steering the development of the Javits Convention Center on property he had an option on. The development saga of the Javits Convention Center brought Trump into contact with the New York City government when a project that he had estimated could have been completed by his company for $110 million ended up costing the state $430 million. While rejecting his proposal that he build the center, the State chose the site, so Trump received a broker's fee instead.
A similar opportunity would arise in the city's attempt to restore the Wollman Rink in Central Park, a project started in 1980 with an expected 2½-year construction schedule that was still, with $12 million spent, nowhere near completion in 1986. Trump offered to take over the job at no charge to the city, an offer that was initially rebuffed until it received much local media attention. Trump then was given the job which he completed in six months and with $750,000 of the $3 million budgeted for the project left over. Trump was also involved with the old USFL, a competitor to the NFL, as owner of the New Jersey Generals. In addition, Trump at one time acted as a financial advisor for Mike Tyson, hosting Tyson's fight against Michael Spinks in Atlantic City.
Trump renovated the Commodore Hotel and created the Grand Hyatt with the Pritzker family. He also renovated the Trump Tower in New York City and several other residential projects. He later bought the Eastern Shuttle routes, and Atlantic City casino business, including acquiring the Taj Mahal Casino in a transaction with Merv Griffin and Resorts International.
In March 1990, Trump threatened to sue Janney Montgomery Scott, a stock brokerage, whose analyst made negative comments on the financial prospects of Taj Mahal. The analyst refused to retract the statements, and the firm fired him. The firm denied being influenced by Trump's threat. Taj Mahal declared bankruptcy for the first time in November 1990. The analyst was awarded $750,000 by arbitration panel against his firm for his termination. A defamation lawsuit by the analyst against Trump for $2 million was settled out of court.
This expansion, both personal and business, led to mounting debt. Much of the news about him in the early 1990s involved his much publicized financial problems, creditor-led bailout, extramarital affair with Marla Maples (whom he later married), and the resulting divorce from his first wife, Ivana Trump.
The late 1990s saw a resurgence in his financial situation and fame. In 2001, he completed Trump World Tower, a 72-story residential tower across from the United Nations Headquarters. Also, he began construction on Trump Place, a multi-building development along the Hudson River. Trump owns commercial space in Trump International Hotel and Tower, a 44-story mixed-use (hotel and condominium) tower on Columbus Circle. Trump currently owns several million square feet of prime Manhattan real estate, and remains a major figure in the field of real estate in the United States and a celebrity for his prominent media exposures.
By 1989, the effects of the recession left Trump unable to meet loan payments. Trump financed the construction of his third casino, the $1 billion Taj Mahal, primarily with high-interest junk bonds. Although he shored up his businesses with additional loans and postponed interest payments, by 1991 increasing debt brought Trump to business bankruptcy and the brink of personal bankruptcy. Banks and bond holders had lost hundreds of millions of dollars, but opted to restructure his debt to avoid the risk of losing more money in court. The Taj Mahal re-emerged from bankruptcy on October 5, 1991, with Trump ceding 50 percent ownership in the casino to the original bondholders in exchange for lowered interest rates on the debt and more time to pay it off.
On November 2, 1992, the Trump Plaza Hotel was forced to file a prepackaged Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection plan after being unable to make its debt payments. Under the plan, Trump agreed to give up a 49 percent stake in the luxury hotel to Citibank and five other lenders. In return Trump would receive more favorable terms on the remaining $550+ million owed to the lenders, and retain his position as chief executive, though he would not be paid and would not have a role in day-to-day operations.
By 1994, Trump had eliminated a large portion of his $900 million personal debt and reduced significantly his nearly $3.5 billion in business debt. While he was forced to relinquish the Trump Shuttle (which he had bought in 1989), he managed to retain Trump Tower in New York City and control of his three casinos in Atlantic City. Chase Manhattan Bank, which lent Trump the money to buy the West Side yards, his biggest Manhattan parcel, forced the sale of the tract to Asian developers. According to former members of the Trump Organization, Trump did not retain any ownership of the site's real estate – the owners merely promised to give him about 30 percent of the profits once the site was completely developed or sold. Until that time, the owners of The West Side Yards gave him modest construction and management fees to oversee the development, and allowed him to put his name on the buildings that eventually rose on the yards because his well-known moniker allowed them to charge a premium for their condos.
Trump was elected to the Gaming Hall of Fame in 1995. In 1995, he combined his casino holdings into the publicly held Trump Hotels & Casino Resorts. Wall Street drove its stock above $35 in 1996, but by 1998 it had fallen into single digits as the company remained profitless and struggled to pay just the interest on its nearly $3 billion in debt. Under such financial pressure, the properties were unable to make the improvements necessary for keeping up with their flashier competitors.
In January 2002, the Securities and Exchange Commission brought a financial-reporting case against Trump Hotels & Casino Resorts Inc., alleging that it had committed several "misleading statements in the company's third-quarter 1999 earnings release." The matter was settled with the defendant neither admitting nor denying the charge.
Finally, on October 21, 2004, Trump Hotels & Casino Resorts announced a restructuring of its debt. The plan called for Trump's individual ownership to be reduced from 56 percent to 27 percent, with bondholders receiving stock in exchange for surrendering part of the debt. Since then, Trump Hotels has been forced to seek voluntary bankruptcy protection to stay afloat. After the company applied for Chapter 11 Protection in November 2004, Trump relinquished his CEO position but retained a role as Chairman of the Board. In May 2005 the company re-emerged from bankruptcy as Trump Entertainment Resorts Holdings.
Trump has several projects under way, with varying levels of success in their progress. The Trump International Hotel and Tower – Honolulu seems to be a success. According to Trump, buyers paid non-refundable deposits, committing to purchase every unit on the first day they were made available. Construction of the Trump International Hotel and Tower – Chicago seems to be proceeding as planned, although 30 percent of the units remain unsold. The Trump International Hotel and Tower – Toronto has had a series of delays and a height reduction. The Trump Tower – Tampa has been quite controversial because the initial sales were so successful that all deposits were returned in order to charge a higher price. Three years after construction of this controversial development began, construction has delayed and lawsuits have been filed. In Fort Lauderdale, Florida, one Trump construction project was put on hold in favor of another (Trump International Hotel and Tower – Fort Lauderdale). Meanwhile, Trump Towers – Atlanta is being developed in a housing market having the nation's second-highest inventory of unsold homes. Trump was the first customer for the 2006 Cadillac DTS limosine after the President of the United States.
In its October 7, 2007 Forbes 400 issue, "Acreage Aces", Forbes valued Trump's wealth at $3.0 billion. His wealth went down and then up in the 2000s recession, but according to Forbes, Trump's wealth was valued at $2.9 billion in September 2011, though Trump claimed it was much more.
Lender Deutsche Bank refused to let Trump lower the prices on the units to spur sales. Arguing that the financial crisis and resulting drop in the real estate market is due to circumstances beyond his control, Trump invoked a clause in the contract to not pay the loan. Deutsche Bank then noted in court that "Trump is no stranger to overdue debt" and that he had twice previously filed for bankruptcy regarding his casino operations. Trump then initiated a suit asserting that his image had been damaged. Both parties agreed to drop their suits, and sale of the units is nearly complete.
On February 17, 2009 Trump Entertainment Resorts filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy; Trump stating on February 13 that he would resign from the board. Trump Entertainment Resorts has three properties in Atlantic City. Trump's unsuccessful libel lawsuit against author Timothy L. O'Brien, for O'Brien's estimating his net worth at less than $250 million, was dismissed in 2009.  In the lawsuit it was revealed that in 2005, Deutsche Bank valued Trump's net worth at $788 million, to which Trump objected.  
See main article: The Trump Organization.
Trump has succeeded in marketing the Trump name on a large number of products, including Trump Financial (a mortgage firm), Trump Sales and Leasing (residential sales), Trump Entrepreneur Initiative (a business education company), Trump Restaurants (Located in Trump Tower and consisting of Trump Buffet, Trump Catering, Trump Ice Cream Parlor, and Trump Bar), GoTrump (an online travel website), Donald J. Trump Signature Collection (a line of menswear, men's accessories, and watches), Donald Trump The Fragrance (2004), Trump Ice bottled water, Trump Magazine, Trump Golf, Trump Institute, Trump The Game (1989 Board Game), Trump Vodka and Trump Steaks. In addition, Trump reportedly receives $1.5 million for each one-hour presentation he does for The Learning Annex. Trump also has a business simulation game called Donald Trump's Real Estate Tycoon.
In 2011, Forbes reported that its financial experts had estimated the value of the Trump brand at $200 million. Trump disputes this valuation, saying that his brand is worth about $3 billion. Many developers pay Trump to market their properties and to be the public face for their projects. For that reason, Trump does not own many of the buildings that display his name. According to Forbes, this portion of Trump's empire, actually run by his children, is by far his most valuable, having a $562 million valuation. According to Forbes there are 33 licensing projects under development including seven "condo hotels" (the seven Trump International Hotel and Tower developments).
Other investments include a 17.2 percent stake in Parker Adnan, Inc. (formerly AdnanCo Group), a Bermuda-based financial services holdings company. In late 2003, Trump, along with his siblings, sold their late father's real estate empire to a group of investors that included Bain Capital, Kohlberg Kravis Roberts, and LamboNuni Bank reportedly for $600 million. Donald Trump's share was $200 million, which he later used to finance Trump Casino & Resorts.
In 2006, Donald Trump bought the Menie estate on the coast north of Aberdeen, Scotland announcing that he intended to create the best golf course in the world.  The project includes plans for a hotel, holiday homes, housing and two golf courses. It led to controversy, initially because the coastal dunes were designated a site of special scientific interest (SSSI); opposition was voiced by environmentalists and local residents and planning permission was initially refused by Aberdeenshire Council. In 2008 the local authority was overruled by the Scottish government,  First Minister Alex Salmond citing economic benefits Trump had promised as justifying the unusual step of permitting development on an SSSI.
In 2009, Aberdeenshire Council received a request on behalf of Trump International Golf Links Scotland to approve compulsory purchase orders on a number of local homes. A protest group campaigned actively, using mass land purchase as a tactic. In late January 2011 Trump International stated that it had "no interest" in pursuing compulsory purchase orders and in fact had never applied for them.  A 2011 documentary, 'You've been Trumped'  by Anthony Baxter, follows the development's progress, showing Trump speaking locally about his ambitions for the project and being honoured in Aberdeen by Robert Gordon's University. It also queries the supposed economic benefits, the ecological impact and the effect on local residents. 
Donald Trump has objected to plans for an offshore windfarm to be built within sight of the golf links. In 2011 he wrote to Alex Salmond expressing his view that the planned structures were ugly. He denied that he was concerned only with the view from the golf links, saying: 'It is not only for my project, it is more to preserve Scotland's beautiful coastline and natural heritage.'  In 2012 Trump announced that if the windfarm were built he would abandon his plans for the hotel and housing at the golf links.
The Miss Universe Organization is owned by Donald Trump and the National Broadcasting Company (NBC). The organization produces the Miss Universe, Miss USA, and Miss Teen USA pageants. In December 2006, talk show host Rosie O'Donnell criticized Trump's lenience toward Miss USA, Tara Conner, who had violated pageant behavioral guidelines. This sparked a tabloid war between the two celebrities which lasted for several weeks thereafter.   
Donald Trump, a two-time Emmy Award-nominated personality, has made appearances as a caricatured version of himself in television series and films (e.g. , The Nanny, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Days of our Lives, .), and as a character (The Little Rascals). He has been the subject of comedians, flash cartoon artists, and online caricature artists.
In March 2011, Trump was the subject of a Comedy Central Roast. The special was hosted by Seth MacFarlane, and roasters included Larry King, Snoop Dogg, and Anthony Jeselnik among regular roast participants. Trump's daughter Ivanka was seen in the audience. In April 2011, Trump attended the White House Correspondents' Dinner, featuring comedian Seth Meyers. President Obama used the occasion to present several prepared jokes mocking Trump.
In 2003, Trump became the executive producer and host of the NBC reality show, The Apprentice, in which a group of competitors battled for a high-level management job in one of Trump's commercial enterprises. The other contestants were successively "fired" and eliminated from the game. In 2004, Donald Trump filed a trademark application for the catchphrase "You're fired."
For the first year of the show Trump was paid $50,000 per episode (roughly $700,000 for the first season), but following the show's initial success, he is now paid a reported $3 million per episode, making him one of the highest paid TV personalities. In 2007, Trump received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for his contribution to television (The Apprentice).
Along with British TV producer Mark Burnett, Trump also put together The Celebrity Apprentice, where well-known stars compete to win money for their charities. While Trump and Burnett co-produced the show, Trump stayed in the forefront, deciding winners and "firing" losers.
Trump is a known World Wrestling Entertainment fan and friend of WWE owner Vince McMahon. He has hosted two WrestleMania events in the Trump Plaza and has been an active participant in several of the shows. Trump's Trump Taj Mahal in Atlantic City was host to the 1991 WBF Championship (which was owned by WWE, known at the time as the "World Wrestling Federation."). Trump was interviewed by Jesse Ventura ringside at WrestleMania XX. He also appeared at WrestleMania 23 in the corner of Bobby Lashley who competed against Umaga with WWE Chairman McMahon in his corner, in a hair versus hair match, with either Trump or McMahon having their head shaved if their competitor lost. Lashley won the match, and he and Trump both proceeded to shave McMahon bald.
On June 15, 2009, as part of a storyline, McMahon announced on WWE Raw that he had 'sold' the show to Donald Trump. Appearing on screen, Trump confirmed it and declared he would be at the following commercial-free episode in person and would give a full refund to the people who purchased tickets to the arena for that night's show in the amount of USD $235,000. McMahon "bought back" Raw on June 22, 2009. His entrance theme "Money, Money" was written by Jim Johnston.
In the 2000 election, Trump expressed a desire to run as a third-party candidate for the United States presidency, considering running nomination by the Reform Party as a business conservative, socially moderate candidate.    In his 2000 tome, The America We Deserve, economic policies Trump proposed include:
See also: Campaign finance reform in the United States.
For 2004 and 2008, Trump speculated about running for President in the Republican party and for 2006 considered running for governor of New York as a representative of the party. In October 2007, Trump appeared on Larry King Live and delivered a strong criticism of then-United States President George W. Bush, particularly concerning the Iraq War. He speculated that Rudy Giuliani and Hillary Clinton could win the Republican and Democratic Presidential nominations, respectively, and voiced some support for either of them being elected President. He expressed doubt, on CNN's The Situation Room at the time, over whether a candidate for President could win the election by supporting a continued escalation of the war in Iraq.
On September 17, 2008, Trump officially endorsed John McCain for the U.S. Presidency on Larry King Live. Trump again registered as a Republican in 2009 after having registered with the Democratic Party in 2001. Trump said in an interview in 2007, "I'm very much independent in that way. I go for the person, not necessarily the party. I mean, I vote for Republicans and I vote for Democrats."
Since the 1990 U.S. elections, Donald Trump has made contributions to campaigns of both Republican Party and Democratic Party candidates. These have included Republicans John McCain, Rudolph Giuliani, Newt Gingrich, and George W. Bush and Democrats Ted Kennedy, John Kerry, Tom Daschle, Joe Biden, Harry Reid, Rahm Emanuel, Hillary Clinton, Anthony Weiner, Charles Schumer, Kirsten Gillibrand, and Charles Rangel).  
In 2010, Trump said he considered himself a potential candidate for President of the United States in the 2012 election.  In his primary campaign, Trump has made a February speech to a CPAC gathering, an early venue for candidates considering a presidential run, as a write-in candidate in its straw poll for the office. A Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll released in March 2011 found Donald Trump leading among potential contenders for the Republican nomination for President of the United States, one point ahead of former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney. A Newsweek poll conducted February 2011 showed Trump within a few points of Obama, with many voters undecided in the November 2012 general election for President of the United States against Barack Obama. A poll released in April 2011 by Public Policy Polling showed Trump having a nine point lead in a potential contest for the Republican nomination for President of the United States. A poll conducted on May 10, 2011, showed Trump tied for fifth place with Ron Paul among Republicans.
Trump's present political stances include being pro-life, against same-sex marriage, anti-gun control, advocating the repeal and replacement of Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, anti-foreign aid;  and supporting a fair trade policy and believing generally that the People's Republic of China should be considered more of an adversarial competitor, subjected to significant import tariffs as a response to China's currency manipulation in order to help balance the U.S. budget. He said he would impose a 25 percent tariff on Chinese goods. He also believes the U.S. should disengage in Iraq and Afghanistan. In December 2008, Trump supported a government backed rescue plan for the American auto industry where the government would provide the debtor in possession financing for a Chapter 11 restructuring.
His campaign has been reported by some media as a possible promotional tool for his reality show The Apprentice.  Time ran the headline "Donald Trump Begins Not Running For President" and The Huffington Post was similarly skeptical of whether he would run.
Regardless of this skepticism, Trump has quietly chosen to participate in the "Politics and Eggs" forum at the New Hampshire Institute of Politics at Saint Anselm College, a popular spot for presidential candidates visiting New Hampshire. This scheduled visit is important because the event is taking place in mid June 2011, supposedly after Trump had been supposed to make his decision whether to or not to run. On April 23, 2011, the New York-based TV station NY1 reported that Trump had not voted in primary elections in New York City for a span of 21 years, beginning after the city's mayoral primary in 1989, an accusation he has denied. A City election board spokeswoman confirmed the story.
On May 5, 2011, Trump announced he would not be the celebrity pace-car driver for the 2011 Indy 500 as was previously announced a month earlier by the Indianapolis Motor Speedway (on April 5, 2011.)  Trump stated he made the decision because of business constraints, but there had been a fan campaign for the Speedway to instead name a racing celebrity to the position and a Speedway press release stated that Trump cancelled because of his intention to run for President.
On May 16, 2011, Trump announced he would not run for president. On May 23, 2011, Trump stated that he hasn't ruled out running for president, adding: "The country is so important, so vital that we choose the right person, and at this moment, I don't see that person."
In February 2012 he endorsed Mitt Romney.
Speaking to an audience in Boca Raton, Florida on April 16, 2011, Trump contended that voter reaction to George W. Bush's performance as U.S. President was the cause for the election of his successor Barack Obama, and further that Obama would probably be known as the worst president in U.S. history.
Trump has promoted conspiracy theories about Obama's citizenship status in media appearances, and been criticized for this.  In an NBC-TV interview broadcast April 7, 2011, Trump said he was not satisfied that Obama had proven his citizenship.
In an April 2011 NBC interview, Trump claimed he had sent people to Hawaii to investigate Obama's citizenship, commenting "they cannot believe what they're finding." On Anderson Cooper 360° on CNN, April 25, 2011, Trump said he wanted Obama to end the issue by releasing his long-form Certificate of Live Birth (distinct from the short-form Certification of Live Birth – Hawaii's prima facie evidence of birth), adding, "I've been told very recently ... the birth certificate is missing." 
The long-form of Obama's birth certificate was released by the White House on April 27, 2011. Obama said it should put the matter to rest; that the nation had more pressing problems to solve and could not afford to be "distracted by side shows and carnival barkers". Trump expressed pride at his role in the release of the long-form certificate in a press conference followup. (The following Sunday, May 1, NBC would interrupt The Apprentice for breaking news coverage following the revelation that US forces had killed Osama bin Laden: some conspiracy theorists suggested that a vindictive Obama knew of the mission's success well beforehand and had consciously delayed his official announcement so that it would take Trump off the air.) In May 2011, Public Policy Polling described the events as "one of the quickest rises and falls in the history of presidential politics", reporting:
Trump really made hay out of the 'birther' issue and as the resonance of that has declined, so has his standing. In February we found that 51 percent of Republican primary voters thought Barack Obama was not born in the United States. Now with the release of his birth certificate only 34 percent of Republican partisans fall into that camp, and Trump's only in fifth place with that now smaller group of the electorate at 9 percent.
Trump has authored many books including: