UPDATE: NEW YORK (AP) -- Donald Trump says he's not running for president.
The reality TV star said in a statement Monday that he won't seek the Republican nomination.
He made his announcement as NBC rolled out its fall lineup. The network is home to Trump's television show, "The Celebrity Apprentice."
Trump has been flirting with a presidential bid for months, traveling to early primary states like New Hampshire, and heckling President Barack Obama from afar.
He is the second Republican in a matter of days to say no to a White House run. Mike Huckabee announced Saturday that he wouldn't seek the presidency.
(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
The questions are being raised from both the political and the entertainment sides on whether Donald Trump will run for the White House.
Last week former speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives Newt Gingrich and Texas Congressman Ron Paul announced they're in the Republican race for president. In addition, NBC reportedly wants an answer from Trump on whether he'll be back next year for his realty show "The Apprentice."
Trump got a little taste of hardball politics at a dinner with Washington correspondents two weeks ago.
President Obama took a jab at Trump making an issue out of the president's birth certificate.
"He can get back to focusing on the issues that matter like, did we fake the moon landing," said President Obama to a laughing crowd.
Trump was there, but he wasn't smiling.
Even so, Trump unabashedly takes credit for the release. It's a singular issue he relentlessly pursued for months.
"I am really honored, frankly, to have played such a big role in hopefully, hopefully getting rid of this issue," Trump said when President Obama released his long-form birth certificate.
If the part-time Palm Beacher does run, does he have a chance?
In a Quinnipiac University poll from May 4, 58% said they would never vote for Trump. He tied with Sarah Palin in the highest negative rating.
Some question whether he's serious about running.
"What analysts are saying that every couple of years Trump seems to suggest he's going to run. He gets a lot of free publicity and doesn't do it," said NewsChannel 5 political analyst Robert Watson.
"I think Donald Trump severely hurt himself with the birther issue," said Brian Crowley, author of the Crowley Political Report. "When the birth certificate finally was presented and he still couldn't simply say the issue is over, now let's talk about the important things facing the country."
It's what I asked him recently at his Palm Beach mansion, Mar-a-Lago.
"The president believes more Americans are concerned about gas prices and unemployment than where he was born," I said.
"I agree with that, they are worried about gas prices and he's largely to blame for that because he doesn't know how to talk to OPEC," said Trump. "He's destroyed the dollar and because the dollar is now so low, food prices are going through the roof. Wait until you see the inflation over the next couple of years and you're starting to see it now and I told you two years ago this was going to happen."
Former Republican congressman Mark Foley said he talked to Trump about running for president.
"I said Donald if you are trifling with people you're making a critical mistake. People are in no mood for game-playing. They are supporting you because because largely they're hopeless, they're looking for an option. I told him it's not unrealistic that you could get elected."
Former West Palm Beach mayor and Democratic congressional candidate Lois Frankel said political novices can be succesful.
"I don't think he should be dismissed and if you look what's happened in politics in the last several years, some unusual people step up to the plate and have been successful and some have not. If he's determined, he will run."
Republican Florida Governor Rick Scott, who, like Trump, has never held elective office, says Trump is making things interesting for the GOP.
"We're going to have a nice debate. We've got a lot of Republican candidates, so it will be something fun to watch."
The last episode of Trump's "Celebrity Apprentice" will air on NBC and WPTV May 22.
Trump says he will make an announcement as to his candidacy, perhaps the following week.
Copyright 2011 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
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