(CNN) — Donald Trump finally acknowledged Friday that “President Barack Obama was born in the United States,” reversing himself on the issue that propelled him into national politics.
Hillary Clinton said earlier Friday that Trump must apologize for his role in furthering the “birther” conspiracy. “For five years he has led the birther movement to delegitimize our first black president,” Clintons said at an event in Washington. “His campaign was founded on this outrageous lie.”
Donald Trump’s campaign on Thursday originally released a statement that Trump believed President Barack Obama was born in the US, a major reversal from a line of attack he launched five years ago.
“In 2011, Mr. Trump was finally able to bring this ugly incident to its conclusion by successfully compelling President Obama to release his birth certificate. Mr. Trump did a great service to the President and the country by bringing closure to the issue that Hillary Clinton and her team first raised,” Trump spokesman Jason Miller said in a statement. “Inarguably, Donald J. Trump is a closer. Having successfully obtained President Obama’s birth certificate when others could not, Mr. Trump believes that President Obama was born in the United States.”