Trump Quotes Pastor Who Predicted ‘Civil War’ If Trump Was Impeached

Trump threatens civil war if he's removed from office.

In yet another example of the hardline that the White House intends to take with respect to the upcoming impeachment investigation, and by extension to the 2020 election, President Trump favorable quoted a Pastor who predicted civil war if the President were removed from office:

President Donald Trump drew condemnation—even from Republicans—late Sunday after he reposted a quote from Fox News contributor and Texas megachurch pastor Robert Jeffress, who predicted a “Civil War like fracture in this Nation from which our Country will never heal” over the impeachment inquiry opened by House Dems last week. The president, who fired off 46 tweets and retweets on Sunday, quoted Jeffress’ Fox News appearance in which the pastor said he had, “never seen the Evangelical Christians more angry over any issue than this attempt to illegitimately remove this President from office.” Jeffress told the Trump-friendly network that Democrats “know the only impeachable offense that President Trump has committed was beating Hillary Clinton in 2016. That’s the unpardonable sin for which the Democrats will never forgive him.”

Here are the President’s tweets, which came at roughly 11:00 p.m. last night:

Not surprisingly, this rhetoric brought with it a lot of blowback, including from at least one Republican Member of Congress:

The tweet left critics, including one sitting Republican congressman, accusing Trump of stoking violence and diminishing the reality of true civil war.

“I have visited nations ravaged by civil war. @realDonaldTrump I have never imagined such a quote to be repeated by a President,” tweeted Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.), a decorated Air Force veteran who served as a pilot in Iraq and Afghanistan. “This is beyond repugnant.”

Two Senate Democrats, Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) and Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii), also condemned the president’s tweet in a back-and-forth in which Murphy described the message as “so frightening.”

“He is going to keep talking like this,” Murphy tweeted, “and some people are going to listen and do what he asks.”

The idea of an American civil war did not come from Trump directly. Instead, he quoted a high-profile and contentious Texas pastor who has stood with the president since the earliest days of the 2016 campaign.

Jeffress has his own history vis a vis Trump:

Jeffress, who fronts a megachurch in Dallas that attracts 14,000 worshipers and hosts his own religious television and radio showsintroduced then-candidate Trump at a campaign rally in January 2016. A month later, he gave an impassioned speech in Fort Worth, endorsing Trump, who he said would be a “true friend” to evangelical Christians, at a time when many religious conservatives still wavered on whether to support the former Democrat with a scandalous past.

Since then, the pastor has been one of Trump’s most outspoken supporters. He uses the Bible to defend the president’s actions and brushes away allegations of immoral conduct, from extramarital affairs to alleged sexual assault, by emphasizing Trump’s record on filling the judiciary with conservative justices and pushing for policies that limit access to abortion.

His speeches regularly appear on Fox News, and Jeffress gave a private sermon to the president-elect and his family before Trump was sworn in on Jan. 20, 2017. He was one of the guests honored by name at a dinner Trump held for evangelical leaders. Trump has shared and replied to Jeffress in the past on Twitter, promoting the pastor’s book releases in 2017 and last January. The pair has appeared together in public on several occasions.

Jeffress has called “Never Trump” Christians “absolutely spineless morons” and compared them to the German Christians in the 1930s who did not try to stop the Nazis. He has called the Mormon Church a “cult,” and personally attacked Republican Mitt Romney over his faith in 2011. He once compared Trump’s border wall to the gates to heaven, because both signify “not everybody’s going to be allowed in.”

Here’s Kinzinger’s Tweet:

This truly disgusting rhetoric from the President is what we can look forward to from now until the Election. And probably long after that.

FILED UNDER: Donald Trump, Impeachment, Politicians, Quick Takes, US Politics
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010. Before joining OTB, he wrote at Below The BeltwayThe Liberty Papers, and United Liberty Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. An Interested Party says:

    Oh my, somebody is very, very nervous and worried…

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  2. Kathy says:

    Apparently it’s ok for Evangelical Christians to sell their soul for the Devil.

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  3. Teve says:

    If Elizabeth Warren won the popular vote by 4 or 5 million, but thanks to the distortion of the electoral college Trump technically won again, I think we could see some civil disturbance.

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  4. sam says:

    I wonder what these folks think such a civil war would be like? An army of goobers from Indiana marching on New York city? Any such conflict would be “fought” with the weapons of education, money, and intelligence. No need to ask if the red states would be outgunned in that conflict.

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  5. mattbernius says:

    On this topic, The Bulwark ran a rather good look into the conservative dystopian civil war fetish fiction. I wonder what the readership cross over is between these work and evangelical dystopian civil war fetish fiction like the Left Behind series…

    https://thebulwark.com/its-time-to-stop-talking-about-a-national-divorce/

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  6. drj says:

    Some people are going to listen and do what he asks.

    This is true.

    Trump is, in effect, threatening the country with civil war because he believes he should be above the law.

    This is quite a bit more than “truly disgusting rhetoric,” it is an actual threat that in a sane world should warrant its own article of impeachment.

    Also, so-called “Evangelical Christians” should never, ever be taken seriously again. That label ought to be a badge of shame.

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  7. MarkedMan says:

    Evangelical “Christianity” is a nonsense sect that has more in common with Scientology than with actual Christianity

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  8. CSK says:

    Don’t underestimate the rage of Cult45. They were balked of Palin. They’re not going to be balked of Trump.

  9. Tony W says:

    Pure, beautiful desperation

  10. CSK says:

    Here’s a comment from Breitbart that says it all: “Our guns are locked and loaded sir, we await your orders.”

    The average Trumpkin can’t punctuate any better than his cult leader.

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  11. Teve says:

    @sam: a funny tweet this weekend said “what, are we supposed to be worried about people from the flyover states invading the coastal areas? I had a dude from Idaho asked me where Times square was while we were in Times square. Bring it!”

  12. gVOR08 says:

    During the 2016 primaries there was a suspicion that Trump’s plan was to use the primaries to get a lot of attention, then after losing start a TV network in competition with FOX. Maybe even continue to hold rallies on a for profit basis. I think that may still be his plan after he leaves office. He’d build on a stabbed-in-the-back, Warren/Biden/whoever is illegitimate narrative. Another reason he, and his minions, need to be prosecuted.

    @sam:

    An army of goobers from Indiana marching on New York city? Any such conflict would be “fought” with the weapons of education, money, and intelligence.

    I’m drawing a blank on the name of the political cartoonist who has a little character at the bottom of the panel. Did a cartoon years ago when the Michigan Militia was prominent, captioned something like ‘Militia practice stealth maneuvers’. Showed a stand of trees with a butt and a gut protruding from behind opposite sides of each tree and the little guy in the corner saying, “Sylphlike they was.” At some point it’s time to ask these “Second Amendment remedy” people, “feeling lucky?”

  13. gVOR08 says:

    @MarkedMan: Jeffress and Trump both need to play to a gullible audience.

  14. CSK says:

    Exactly how and where would Civil War 2 be fought? Have the cultists given this any thought? Assuming, correctly, that no state, city, county, town, or probably even neighborhood is 100% pro-Trump or 100% anti-Trump, how would the conflict be handled? House-to-house shooting?

  15. michael reynolds says:

    No, there’s not going to be a civil war. Old people (Cult45) need lots and lots of young people to sacrifice, and guess what? The yutes are on our side.

    That said, I do expect more white supremacist terrorism. There will very likely be some bombings and some mass murders, especially of black and brown people, though I imagine Jews will get our share as well.

    But fighting evil is never cost-free. And that’s what this is. This is not politics, this is not Left vs. Right, this is a fight against evil. Let’s not pretend there’s a choice, there isn’t. If we fail to oppose evil we become evil ourselves.

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  16. drj says:

    Exactly how and where would Civil War 2 be fought?

    They’ll shoot up a black church, a border community shopping mall, and perhaps a college campus or two.

    This is what they will conceive as a strike against “tyranny.”

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  17. Kathy says:

    @CSK:

    Civil wars are not commonly fought on a neat geographic split like the US Civil War was largely fought. Even then, there was unrest within states which themselves were divided, like Kentucky.

    Also, civil wars tend to be fought against a government in power, not among the peoples of a country. even the USCW was like this, except the South didn’t intend to overthrow Lincoln and install their own as president of the US (some think a more proper term for that war is The War of Secession for this reason).

    Think more Revolutionary War. Fighting extended over several states (or colonies at the time), with the intent of forcing out English rule and taking over themselves.

  18. Kit says:

    @drj:

    Also, so-called “Evangelical Christians” should never, ever be taken seriously again.

    Well, there are plenty of them in the military, and I believe they love them some Trump. So, what’s to stop Trump declaring a state of emergency, issuing some executive orders, and letting the usual suspects wring their hands while parsing the Constitution? If he loses the election, what does he have to lose?

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  19. drj says:

    @Kit:

    If he loses the election, what does he have to lose?

    Trump would do this in a heartbeat, but not enough people will risk going to jail for him, I think.

    Rats leaving the sinking ship and all that.

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  20. CSK says:

    @Kathy: Correct–but are the cultists thinking this clearly? Do they possess your historical knowledge?
    I don’t know what they’re thinking, other than that they claim to be locked and loaded and rarin’ to go. Maybe they’re envisioning guerilla warfare. I know they believe all patriots will side with them.
    They talk a lot about the south and mid-west seceding from the coasts, though the disposition of some of the major cities in the south and mid-west could be problematic.

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  21. Taiko says:

    This is the kind of crap which scares me. Not a real civil war, but it only takes one loser to take this crap to heart and decide that my mixed race son or brown skinned wife don’t deserve to live. Now I have to worry about this shit, on top of all the usual stresses of daily life? WTF?

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  22. An Interested Party says:

    If he loses the election, what does he have to lose?

    Well, considering that would be treason, his life…

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  23. KM says:

    I live down the street from a Trumpkin who flies a huge Trump 2020 *above* the smaller American flag on his front lawn. On my block alone are an elderly Korean war vet, an Air Force family, 2 Army families and mine (all branches represented). We have kindly pointed out the horrible flag etiquette on display to deaf ears. If this nut thinks that if a civil war happens all “patriots” and “conservatives” are going to side with Trump, he’s freaking nuts. They’d take the chance to shoot his ass just for the flag offense we have to witness every day alone. They may have voted for him because he was the R candidate but they will absolute *not* be engaging in insurrection, thank you. I’m even willing to bet the number of armed folks who will not be siding with Trump is far, far higher then the number that are.

    It’s like the “silent majority”, see? Of course all these people will show up to side with them and help them out. They don’t know who, they don’t know how and they can’t definitively prove they exist but they *have* to because the nuts never, ever believe they’re alone in their nuttery. Of course the military will be on their side – the bases are all in red states, aren’t they? It’s not like they have bastions of heavily armed men and women who wouldn’t take them out the second they turned on their fellow citizens- they live in red states and lean conservative so they must be all in, all of them! Presumption is a bitch and the number of conservatives willing to literally engage is a civil war isn’t nearly high enough to prevent them from being wiped out in days. After all, they’re stupid enough to wear hats and wave flags identifying themselves so it’s not like we don’t know who’s gonna be trouble…..

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  24. MarkedMan says:

    I shouldn’t be going here but the idea that these failed Trump state clowns are going to haul their fat asses out from behind the all you can eat buffets and somehow assemble themselves into a well organized militia is beyond hysterical. If they start shambolically marching towards the productive states to impose the Orange Mango in as king, they will be massacred the first time they pass a meat packing plant and the old Vietnamese immigrants, all 110 pounds of them, come out to show them how people who fought in the jungles against the Khmer Rouge deal with a bunch of meth’ed out good ol’ boys. And if they make it to the east and west coasts, well, I for one would be more than happy to plant them in the ground and let them fertilize our crops.

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  25. PT says:

    Ok, this thread is getting weird now. Take it easy everyone.

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  26. Kathy says:

    @CSK:

    but are the cultists thinking this clearly?

    Heavens no. that would require actual thinking.

    They wouldn’t rise up in armies or guerrilla bands to overthrow the government, because they actually support the current government. they might wish to overthrow the House, as it’s dominated by Democrats. But they’re not making that kind of coherent noise.

    Technicalities and definitions aside, as we’re not arguing about semantics, they seem to want to take up arms and then…. And then something. They’ve no idea how to get what they want, if they even know what that is.

    So I expect, as has been noted by others, white supremacy terrorism will go on the rise. This is a serious issue, more so since the current so-called administration doesn’t even care about such things.

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  27. CSK says:

    @Kathy: They’d threaten to rise up against a government headed by President Warren or Biden, because that would contravene the will of the real Americans.

  28. gVOR08 says:

    Trump may make a lot of noise, and as I suggested above, go into the Conservative Entertainment Complex “news” business, but he won’t call for armed insurrection. Where’s the money in that? Like he’s gonna pledge his honor, his life, and his sacred fortune?

  29. KM says:

    @PT :
    TBH there’s really no way to discuss something like this without it being weird. We’re talking about a President pushing the notion that his devoted followers would rise up for Civil War 2 to prevent him from being held Constitutionally accountable for his actions and crimes. Said followers tend to be keyboard warriors, cultists, gun fetishists, race haters and generally magical thinking, in-poor-health, overweight civilians who know jack about how to do such a thing outside re-watching Red Dawn. Those devoted followers implicitly accept that only they are “real Americans” and all the rest of us traitors are expendable if he gives the word.

    The chances this discussion wouldn’t go slightly sideways were zilch. Weird begets weird, man.

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  30. Kathy says:

    @CSK:

    Yes, they may do that. Which, BTW, would be a more classical civil war.

    But how?

    You need three things to fight a civil war: supplies (including weapons and ammunition), people to fight, and money. the intangibles are far more important. You need a leader, or leaders, and organization, and a media operation as well to get your side of the story out.

    Also, since the XX century, the disparity between weapons available to the population and military has grown rather wide. Try fighting tanks and planes and helicopters with AR-15s or hunting rifles.

    At this point their best bet would be to have the armed forces rebel and join their war. That’s very unlikely, as most armies won’t rebel against their commander in chief, especially if they’ve done nothing worse than win an election.

    I just don’t see it happening.

  31. Zachriel says:

    @Teve: I had a dude from Idaho asked me where Times square was while we were in Times square.

    Rick Blaine in Casablanca: Well there are certain sections of New York, Major, that I wouldn’t advise you to invade.

  32. JKB says:

    There is a difference between a “civl war” and “civil war-like fracture”.

    In truth, it would be more like the Kansas-Missouri fracture prior to the Civil War. It didn’t cause the Civil War, but produced the most egregious hostilities. It is part of why most Civil War history focuses on the eastern campaigns under Gen. Robert E. Lee, than the guerrilla campaigns in the central Midwest.

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  33. michael reynolds says:

    @JKB:
    Actually, the better example would be Aum Shinrikyo or Jonestown or Waco.

    The Civil War was at least about something tangible: money. Because despite all the lost cause culture bullshit it was always about rich men who had invested heavily in slaves they thought of as property, as money. Men who were millionaires would be paupers the minute slavery failed. These men managed to create just enough of a mythology that they could send the same poor white men they’d screwed under the system of slavery to die for their wealth.

    Cult45 is not about policy or politics or even money, it’s a cult built on aging white people’s fear that they are losing their place in society. It’s not a political movement, it’s a paranoid religious cult. You aren’t a supporter, @JKB, you’re a worshipper, as stupid as the poor whites who died to keep plantation owners rich.

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  34. DrDaveT says:

    @gVOR08:

    I’m drawing a blank on the name of the political cartoonist who has a little character at the bottom of the panel.

    Tom Toles?

  35. Teve says:

    Ben Collins
    @oneunderscore__
    · 2h
    I truly cannot tell you how many times InfoWars has said we’re about to be in a civil war, specifically tying it to Trump impeachment.

    It helps with their neverending supplement and doomsday kit sale.

    NRA is probly pushing the Civil War line too, cuz gun sales are down.

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  36. Chip Daniels says:

    @CSK:
    Was it a big burly guy weeping manly tears as he begged Sir to give him direction?

  37. Chip Daniels says:

    I am just old enough to remember how the adults spoke about the social turmoil of the 1960’s.
    How loosely and casually people tossed around words like revolution and how college students were actually building bombs, and Ronald Reagan famously said that if it took a bloodbath, then lets get on with it.

    Yet, in the end, there really aren’t that many Americans willing to die for any of the things we ferociously argue about.

    How many Trumpists, really, are going to risk it all for, well, what exactly?

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  38. csk says:

    @JKB: I think it’s a distinction without a difference.

  39. CSK says:

    @Chip Daniels: If it is, I’m reminded of the guy who said, back in 2009: “I await Sarah Palin’s marching orders!”

  40. Fortunato says:

    @Chip Daniels:
    Respectfully, the social turmoil of the 60’s – a movement to bring an end to wars (profiteering), inequality, global subjugation and exploitation (i.e. Dole), police brutality, overt racism, classism, homophobia et al – has nothing in common with the turmoil wrought by today’s right wing terrorists and the White nationalist movement.

    It’s comparing Timothy Leary, The Doors & Daisies to Timothy McVeigh, 100 round drum magazines & ammonium nitrate bombs.

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  41. Fortunato says:

    @CSK:
    Re:
    “I await Sarah Palin’s marching orders!”

    That was my exact fear when Trump retweeted ‘Civil War’ while at the same time demanding Schiff, the whistleblower and his/her sources to be brought forward on charges of treason.
    The explosive materials have all been gathered and primed by the Trump Crime Syndicate. All that is now required for the blood to flow is grifting clowns like $arah Palin, Ted Nugent, Michelle Bachmann, Joe Arpaio et al to join in the MAGAwail.

    I can’t help but think back to the final scene from Invasion of the Body Snatchers.

  42. Chip Daniels says:

    @Fortunato:
    Maybe this time it really is different.

    But remember, that in 1968 white nationalists had a credible third party candidate in Wallace, and there was plenty of low level violence and bombings going on.

    I guess my point is that out of a hundred guys who talk big at the bar or on the internet, maybe one is willing to back it up.

  43. MarkedMan says:

    @Fortunato: @Chip Daniels: It’s been more or less forgotten that in the 60’s and 70’s violence on the left was a thing, up to and including making and setting off bombs, robbing armored cars and killing the guards, etc. Yes, today most of the violent losers are attracted to the right wing, but if the left became violent again they would be just as likely to “join” that side.

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  44. Gustopher says:

    The last Civil War didn’t end so well for the President at the time… maybe we can just skip to the end?

  45. Hal_10000 says:

    During the 2016 election, I and other “never Trump” conservatives talked about temperament. THIS is what we meant. We haven’t seen Trump in a real crisis before. And … to be honest, we’re still not seeing him in one. We’re seeing him a self-made crisis that is in its earliest stages. This impeachment thing has barely begun. And he’s completely melting down, publicly and shockingly.

    This is what we meant by temperament. Say what you will about Clinton — and I’ve said plenty — she would not be melting down under these circumstances. She would be combative. She would be fighting it tooth and nail. She would definitely be saying her opponents were out to get here. But she would not be posting a hundred tweets ranting and raving like an unhinged lunatics. That’s why I said, at the time, she was not only the better choice. She was the more conservative choice.

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  46. michael reynolds says:

    @Hal_10000:
    He’s just so weak, as a man. Just weak, there’s no better word for it. It’s bizarre to see supposedly macho guys worship this pathetic excuse for a man. My God, what has happened to men? Seriously, WTF has happened to American mankind?

    I’d call Trump a pussy but pussies are tough. He’s a scrotum.

  47. An Interested Party says:

    We’re seeing him a self-made crisis that is in its earliest stages.

    It seems like all or most of his crises are self-made…I guess his voters didn’t expect this when they voted for the idiot…

    He’s a scrotum.

    An old shriveled-up one desperately in need of some Viagra…

  48. michael reynolds says:

    The one good thing Trump has done is lower the bar to earthworm level. I’d look at Obama and know I was maybe as smart, but definitely not as educated, as patient, as persistent, as able, as good and decent a man.

    But Trump? Jesus Christ, I’d hang myself if I was that pathetic. What an empty, soulless nobody. He’s a genuinely disgusting human being.

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  49. Hal_10000 says:

    @michael reynolds:

    I’m writing a post right now on the meltdown and this an idea I keep returning to: his blazing insecurity. As someone who is often insecure and frequently inflicted with Imposter Syndrome, I somewhat sympathize. But my reaction tends to be the opposite. Faced with criticism, I tend to turn inward and think that they’re right, I don’t know what I’m doing, etc. Trump reacts the opposite way: with flaring rage

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  50. de stijl says:

    They’re not going to assault and kill their neighbors because they sport a Bernie or Warren sign. Well, 99.x times put of a hundred.

    They’re jackholes, usually not total sociopaths. Mouthy and aggressive when they believe the crowd supports them; silently raging when they sense they will be considered criminals (my brother is one).

    Would JKB, etc. be as dismissive if Pelosi or Schiff retweeted something that said that it likely be would be a civil war if Trump was not removed from office?

  51. de stijl says:

    @Hal_10000:

    Trump was mentored by Roy Cohn and is a blazing narcissist. Attack is his default mode.

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  52. Joe says:

    Evangelical “Christianity” is a nonsense sect that has more in common with Sharia than with actual Christianity

    Hey, MarkedMan, FTFY

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  53. michael reynolds says:

    @Hal_10000:
    I think I’ve understood Trump from the start as a character in the literary sense. He’s almost scarily simple, like a stick figure of a man. Nothing he’s done has been in conflict with my analysis of him as a character, he is 100% consistent, completely predictable. He’s not even a well-written character, he’s too obviously false, too uni-dimensional, too lacking in depth or nuance. Put it this way, if I had written this guy as a secondary character I’d be embarrassed.

  54. CSK says:

    @michael reynolds: That’s funny, because Judith Krantz actually did use Trump as a character in one of her novels back in the mid-1980s. (She described him as “the handsome young billionaire.”) She died recently. I wonder if, before her death, she ever looked back in horror at her “creation.”

  55. de stijl says:

    The poor little (liddle’) rich boy never accepted by Manhattan society despite his purported wealth and his 24 carat gold bathroom fixtures is not a tragedy.

    It’s a bad re-make of a shitty 80’s horror movie with poor liddle’ rich boy as the monster.

    (It amuses me that Trump made such a big deal about CNN when he can’t spell lil)

    He is a complete caricature. Remember those movies where the protagonist and his band of misfit, crazy friends had to win a ski race to prevent the greedy real estate developer from turning their beloved ski mountain into luxury condos, and save grandma’s cozy home from foreclosure? Trump is that real estate developer character.

  56. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @CSK: So did Margaret Truman in Murder at the Watergate. Not directly in this case, but he was mentioned in a dialogue as a potential Presidential candidate. Ironically, the characters were laughing at the idea. Sort of on the lines of “imagine that; a germaphobe out on the campaign trail, shaking all those hands, never happen.”