Donald Trump built a fortune and a career using little more than some Hollywood magic. Thanks to a few well-placed cameras, heavily-produced scripts, and masterful cuts in the editing booth, he was reworked from a debt-laden businessman with a line of cheaply made neckties into an American success story.
But when you live by the cellophane, you die by the cellophane. For years, reporters have chased a large cache of video footage supposedly featuring Trump engaged in some of the most vile, racist rhetoric imaginable. This week, ThinkProgress obtained conclusive video evidence of that racism.
Watch it below:
“Haven’t I seen this footage before?,” you’re probably thinking to yourself.
Yes! Shockingly (or perhaps not so much), Trump’s racism has been hiding in plain sight for decades.
Of course, the public has plenty of reason to believe there are still more unaired recordings of Trump using racist language or mocking others in a racist manner waiting to be discovered. Rumblings of their exact contents reached a fever pitch this week when reality television star and former contestant on The Apprentice Omarosa Manigault Newman revealed she herself had recorded dozens of conversations with White House staff during her time in the Trump administration. One such recording features then-spokeswoman Katrina Pierson talking about how the campaign should respond if a tape of Trump using the n-word while on the set of The Apprentice were to leak.
“I am trying to find out at least what context it was used in to help us maybe try to figure out a way to spin it,” Pierson can be heard saying.
“He said it,” she adds. “He is embarrassed.”
The sad truth about such a tape is that there’s a real likelihood its public disclosure would do very little to erode whatever support Trump has left. Many of the voters who cast their ballots for him in the last election, either out of contempt for Hillary Clinton or on the belief an “outsider” would be an effective antidote to years of governmental dysfunction, have come to realize they were played by a skilled grifter. But the stalwart supporters Trump has left in his camp are those being paid by him, related to him, or those specifically attracted to his willingness to openly embrace racism — and it’s unlikely they’ll ever turn their backs on him.
The public has known for a very, very long time that Trump is a racist. Video of him shouting the n-word into a loudspeaker from atop the Empire State Building while dressed in blackface would simply be the latest chapter in that anthology.