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Then there were Mr. Trump’s attacks on whether Mr. Obama was born in the United States. He is claiming vindication now for elevating the issue in numerous interviews - a tactic that catapulted him into the news and drew attention to his presidential ambitions - clearly forcing Mr. Obama to produce his official birth certificate this week.

After three years of ignoring the issue, Mr. Obama signed a letter to Hawaii state officials Friday requesting a copy of his official birth certificate. It was delivered Tuesday night.

But early on, Mr. Trump said he had hired investigators digging into the “birther” issue in Hawaii and, based on their reports, was convinced that the birth certificate didn’t exist. Now that Mr. Obama has produced a copy, Mr. Trump is touting this as a big political achievement.

Mr. Trump certainly forced Mr. Obama’s hand by lifting the issue beyond the second-tier attention it has received. But it’s an issue among a relatively small segment of voters that he could have sidestepped, saying that it’s not among the top concerns on most voters’ minds.

But worse than his tendency to make things up is his off-the-cuff, sometimes bombastic comments about how he would handle major issues like the budget deficit, skyrocketing oil prices, and blaming China for all our economic ills.

On Libya, he would go in, presumably militarily, and get rid of Col. Moammar Gadhafi and seize the oil fields if the Saudis would pay us the $5 billion it would cost, plus a cut in their oil supplies. On overall oil prices, he would call up Arab OPEC leaders and tell them “you’ve had your fun, but it’s over.” He talks tough about going in and seizing oil fields, which is a frightening prospect for a country still embroiled in two wars and now Libya.

China is a hot-button issue for candidates to demagogue when they do not have a domestic economic plan to boost growth and jobs in America. China is not responsible for our weak, jobless economy, excessive tax levels and unprecedented $14.3 trillion debt. Mr. Obama’s failed anti-growth economic policies are to blame.

A shallow, sound-bite campaign that invents “facts” to fit his own reality, threatens the Arab world, pushes China around and brags how “easy” it is to fix the fiscal mess we’re in, without the hint of a well-thought-out plan, may play with some voters.

But this is not a presidential contender who has serious answers to the critical economic and fiscal issues we now face. Mr. Obama’s birth certificate will not create a single job.

Donald Lambro is a syndicated columnist and former chief political correspondent for The Washington Times.