Donald Trump’s niece Mary Trump writes in her new book that the coronavirus crisis and economic downturn have only brought out the worst in the president, someone who was unprepared for the moment and who spent a lifetime lying and even cheating to get ahead.
The book, Too Much and Never Enough: How My Family Created the World’s Most Dangerous Man, was obtained by the Associated Press and a number of other media outlets on Tuesday, is set to be published on July 14 by Simon & Schuster, even though the Trump family has sought to stop its release in court.
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The president’s “ability to control unfavorable situations by lying, spinning, and obfuscating has diminished to the point of impotence in the midst of the tragedies we are currently facing,” Mary Trump writes, according to the AP.
Among other things, Mary Trump, who has a doctorate in clinical psychology, claims that her uncle paid a friend to take the SATs for him as a way to eventually get into a prestigious university, the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton Business School. Mary Trump also writes that the president’s sister, Maryanne Trump Barry, doubted in 2015 he would ever be elected. “He’s a clown — this will never happen,” she quotes her aunt as saying, according to The New York Times.
As reports of the book’s contents surfaced on Tuesday, the White House responded with blanket criticism.
“It’s a book of falsehoods and that’s about it,” said White House spokeswoman Kayleigh McEnany.
Kellyanne Conway, counselor to the president, told reporters that “as for books generally, obviously they’re not fact checked, nobody’s under oath. I know there’s always this rush to slap credibility on whoever’s getting the president that day. Your job is to get the story, not get the president. So thank you for doing that. And I think family matters are family matters.”
Mary Trump’s father was Fred Trump Jr., who died of a heart attack in 1981 after descending into alcoholism. She writes that he was scarred by emotional abuse from the family patriarch, Fred Trump Sr., in part because he refused to follow him into the family real estate business.
In the book, she writes that Donald Trump went to see a movie even though her father had entered the hospital on the night of his death, according to the Times.
The president has expressed regret putting pressure on his brother to work in the family business, rather than pursue a passion for becoming a commercial airline pilot. “I think the mistake that we made was we assumed that everybody would like it. That would be the biggest mistake,” the president told The Washington Post last year.
Conway told reporters on Tuesday that they should remember that the president is “not her patient. He’s her uncle.”
“He’s always complimentary of his brother privately and publicly in terms of, he was the heir to the family business,” she said. “He was so handsome, such a force of nature, a great guy, so smart, and that the president has been very clear in private and public settings I’ve seen him go like this to kids actually in a room. Privately that, you don’t touch alcohol, drugs, tobacco, he’s never had any of that because he saw what it did to his brother who he loved very much.”
The president’s younger brother, Robert, is seeking a preliminary injunction over the publication of the book, with a hearing scheduled for Friday. He claims that Mary Trump is bound by a confidentiality agreement she signed as part of the settlement of Fred Trump Sr.’s estate in 2001. Although he obtained a temporary restraining order that, at least temporarily, limits what Mary Trump can disclose, an appellate judge last week ruled that it didn’t apply to the publisher. That freed up Simon & Schuster to move forward with the book’s release.
Other claims in the book:
Fred Trump Sr. She contends that the president is a narcissist, but that his father “short-circuited Donald’s ability to develop and experience the entire spectrum of human emotion,” per the Chicago Sun-Times. “Casual dehumanization of people was commonplace at the Trump dinner table,” she wrote.
Evangelicals. Maryanne Trump Barry was surprised that Trump garnered support among evangelicals. According to The New York Times, Mary Trump writes that she told her, “The only time Donald went to church was when the cameras were there. It’s mind boggling. But that’s all about his base. He has no principles. None!”
Diagnosis. The book delivers into the president’s mental state. “A case could be made that he also meets the criteria for antisocial personality disorder, which in its most severe forms is generally considered sociopathy but can also refer to chronic criminality, arrogance, and disregard for the rights of others,” she writes, according to Vanity Fair. She also suggests other potential disorders, including an undiagnosed learning disability.
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