Early yesterday evening The Washington Post broke the story of the secretly recorded conversations between Donald Trump’s niece Mary and her aunt, the president’s sister, retired federal judge Maryanne Trump Barry.
Much of the conversation was used as part of the basis for Mary L. Trump’s recent devastatingly critical tell-all book about her uncle, Too Much and Never Enough: How My Family Created the World’s Most Dangerous Man, but the tapes reveal serval new direct quotes from the president’s older sister that indicate a dysfunctional family dynamic of the first degree.
Here are a few of the choicest quotes from Maryanne Trump Barry that were included on the surreptitiously recorded audio:
“All he wants to do is appeal to his base. He has no principles. None. None. And his base, I mean my God, if you were a religious person, you want to help people. Not do this.”
“His goddamned tweet and lying, oh my God, I’m talking too freely, but you know. The change of stories. The lack of preparation. The lying. Holy shit.”
“He doesn’t read.”
“It’s the phoniness of it all. It’s the phoniness and this cruelty. Donald is cruel.”
“He was a brat.”
“I did his homework for him”
“I drove him around New York City to try to get him into college.”
“He went to Fordham for one year [actually two years] and then he got into University of Pennsylvania because he had somebody take the exams.”
With such explosive revelations, it’s not surprising that the responses to the news tracked around predictably partisan lines.
Perhaps the most telling reaction to the leaked audio comes from Donald Trump himself who somehow managed to ignore it completely with nary a tweet devoted to the subject in this morning’s social media posts.
While the president did seem to refer to the leak obliquely in a statement to The Hill, saying “Every day it’s something else, who cares,” he mostly relied on various surrogates to take to the airwaves on Sunday morning political talk shows to dismiss the importance of the newly revealed familial animosity.
White House chief of staff Mark Meadows called the leaks “politics as usual” and “just another day and another attack” when he appeared on ABC‘s This Week this morning.
NEW: White House chief of staff Mark Meadows responds to Maryanne Trump’s criticism of President Trump, telling @GStephanopoulos, “Obviously, he’s been public with his response. Just another day and another attack that we continue to see.” https://t.co/LcCZLVkoXR pic.twitter.com/6ad56MxzQ5
— This Week (@ThisWeekABC) August 23, 2020
Trump campaign advisor Jason Miller went on NBC‘s Meet The Press and characterised the remarks by his sister as simply “sibling rivalry.”
“Sibling rivalries are nothing new in the world. It’s been going on since the beginning of time, in fact, we heard some pretty pointed commentary from Malik Obama about former President Barack Obama,” Miller said. “And so, this is something unfortunately when you get to the White House you have family members who sometimes decide to voice their sibling rivalries or frustrations.”
Trump adviser: "Sibling rivalries are nothing new"
— Meet the Press (@MeetThePress) August 23, 2020
Commenters on Twitter had a decidedly different perspective.
His sister is still backing him even though she knows he's crooked and only out for himself. This is how sad this family is. They would rather stay in it for anything they may get from all this than be honest about who Trump truly is.
— ohluckyme (@sheiladc59) August 23, 2020
No news org can quite figure out a way to just put out a headline saying "he's bad, folks, jfc, what's wrong with anyone who voted for him"
— Asymmetric Warfarin (@InspectorHound4) August 23, 2020
Maryanne did his homework, she says he doesn’t read, how does he tie his shoes in the morning.
— Ronald Piersee (@RPiersee) August 23, 2020
I never actually met her, apparently she's my sister, I'm in a few pictures with her, but no, I don't recall meeting her.
— A Man Named Sioux (@KretzSioux) August 23, 2020
That was probably the nicest thing she could think of to say.
— (((Howard Forman))) (@thehowie) August 23, 2020
Suffice it say that there are plenty more comments along similar lines in respinse to The Washington Post story.
One doesn’t need to be related to Donald Trump to see that everything that his sister says about him rings of the truth.
If you needed any further excuse to work as hard as you can to defeat this man at the polls in November, Maryanne Trump Barry kindly provided more kindling for the righteous flame that will cleanse the White House of Donald Trump’s vile infection of our political body.
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Vinnie Longobardo is a 35-year veteran of the TV, mobile & internet industries, specializing in start-ups and the international media business. His passions are politics, music and art.