President Donald Trump still thinks former President Barack Obama wasn’t born in the United States.
The New York Times reported Wednesday that in recent months Trump has been reviving his “birther” conspiracy theories about his predecessor.
In recent private conversations, Trump has questioned the authenticity of Obama’s birth certificate, according to advisers and one senator who spoke to the Times. The senator said he laughed when he heard Trump talking about his theories, and the senator said Trump had a hard time letting go of the conspiracy.
Trump has been one of the most vocal “birthers” over the years, despite the fact that Obama released his birth certificate in 2011 to stamp out the conspiracy. While campaigning for president in September 2016, Trump officially dropped the racist claims, but said he thinks his then-opponent Hillary Clinton propagated the theory in 2008.
Reigniting birtherism claims comes as Trump privately questions the authenticity of the audio in the infamous “Access Hollywood” tape, which was released in the eleventh hour of the 2016 election and features the President bragging about grabbing women by the genitals.
At the time, Trump apologized for what he said, but told a Republican lawmaker in January that he wanted to investigate the tape and said “we don’t think that was my voice,” according to the Times. He’s privately raised doubts about the video again in recent days, but the White House has been cautious about directly answering questions on the topic. White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders on Monday only said that the President “made his position clear on that at the time.”
Advisers said Trump also privately believes he lost the popular vote last November because of voter fraud, according to the Times.