In a tweet on Monday night, GOP nominee Donald Trump told supporters not to buy a “boring” new biography about him, Trump Revealed: An American Journey of Ambition, Ego, Money, and Power, which went on sale Tuesday.
“The @WashingtonPost quickly put together a hit job book on me- comprised of copies of some of their inaccurate stories. Don’t buy, boring!” he wrote.
An interesting directive, given Trump sat down with Washington Post reporters – two of whom, Michael Kranish and Marc Fisher, are authors of the book – for 20 hours’ worth of interviews. Trump’s questionable business deals, his figurative shaking of hands with the Clintons (he’s a longtime germaphobe), his 4,056 lawsuits, and his view of politics as “transactional, not ideological” are all examined in the biography, in which the authors describe Trump as “a man certain of his views, hugely confident in his abilities, not terribly well informed, quick to take offense.”
If that mini portrait doesn’t send you running to the nearest bookstore, here are the top five things you should know about the biography.
1. If Trump loses the election, he wants a TV show.
Trump once pitched a TV series based on his life that was intended to be the The West Wing of the real-estate development world. The dramatic series, called The Tower, was turned down by network executives – but that won’t stop Trump from pursuing its creation if he doesn’t get the presidential gig.
“Depending on what happens with this thing, I’d like to do that,” Trump said. “Of course, if this goes all the way, I can’t do it. I won’t have the time. And it wouldn’t be appropriate.”
2. Trump hasn’t read a biography about a president. Oh, and he likes his briefings short.
Trump likes his reports short and given orally. Write Kranish and Fisher, “He expected his day-to-day work style [as president] to be similar to what he’d done for decades.” They describe Trump’s lack of a computer at his desk and a story that Trump recounted for them: When a CEO wanted to submit a lengthy report because “the Chinese were taking advantage of the United States,” Trump requested “three pages” instead. Said Trump, “I’m a very efficient guy. Now I could also do it verbally, which is fine … I want it short. There’s no reason to do hundreds of pages because I know exactly what it is… because I have a lot of common sense and I have a lot of business ability.”
When asked by reporters if he’d ever read a biography about a president, Trump explained that he doesn’t have the time. “I never have. I’m always busy doing a lot. Now I’m more busy, I guess, than ever before … I don’t have much time. I have so little time.”
3. Trump has made troubling comments about women – including wife Melania.
From the time he was voted “Ladies’ Man” at New York Military Academy, to his role in beauty pageants, to his marriages to three beautiful women, cultivating an image as a “playboy,” or as “virile,” often seems as important to Trump’s brand as any of his dealmaking. Trump Revealed not only rehashes the mogul’s two divorces, with all of their messy tabloid drama, it also relives Trump’s visits over the years to The Howard Stern Show. Would Trump stay with his third wife, Melania, if she had a disfiguring car accident that resulted in “one hundred stitches on her face?” Stern once asked.
“How do the breasts look?” Trump responded.
“The breasts are okay,” Stern said.
“That’s important,” Trump said.
4. Trump was involved in a racial discrimination lawsuit in the 1970s.
In 1973, Trump and his father became embroiled in what Kranish and Fisher describe as “one of the most significant racial bias cases of the era.” The Justice Department filed a civil rights case accusing the Trumps of discriminating against African-Americans who applied for housing in a Trump building. It was during this time that Trump met Roy Cohn – a lawyer who encouraged the two men to file a $100 million counterclaim. The counterclaim was denied and the Trumps reached a settlement with the Justice Department. But the takeaway for Donald Trump, it seemed, was to always fight, no matter the odds. This mentality reappeared when Trump said, on Don Imus’ show, that “casinos on Indian reservations got unfair, ‘discriminatory’ advantages.” Later, in 2000, when Native Americans were poised to open casinos in the Catskill Mountains, “Trump played a role in a series of explosive TV, newspaper, and radio ads that accused members of the Mohawk Indian tribe of having long criminal records and ties to the mob.” There were pictures of cocaine and syringes. “Are these the new neighbors we want?” asked the ads.
5. Trump has no friends.
Since 1980, Trump hasn’t been able to name his besties. Except for his family, of course. In his interview with Post reporters he couldn’t name any friends except for three men, whose names he asked to keep off the record. He also said he’s only seen them a few times in recent years. “I mean, I think I have a lot of friends, but they’re not friends like perhaps other people have friends, where they’re together all the time and they go out to dinner all the time,” said Trump. Who does he talk to if he has a personal issue or doubts that he wants to share? “More of my family,” said Trump. “I have a lot of good relationships. I have good enemies, too, which is okay. But I think more of my family than others.”