Donald Trump is perhaps best known for the money he’s made (and lost) in real estate, his less-than-humble demeanor and his hit reality TV show, ‘The Apprentice.’ In recent years, the business tycoon has also been chasing the dream of holding the highest office in the land. Although many people know he has been eyeing the Oval Office for a couple of election cycles, you may be surprised to learn just how far back his presidential aspirations reach. Watch as Donald, in a 1988 appearance on ‘The Oprah Winfrey Show,’ shares his thoughts on running for office.

Clip of Donald Trump appearing on a 1988 episode of The Oprah Winfrey Show to promote his book Trump: Art of the Deal. The conversation turned from the literary to the political, however, when Oprah brought up Trump’s then-recent foray into playing policy wonk via $95K in newspaper ads railing against Japan and Saudi Arabia. When pressed, Trump reiterated that the U.S. was getting “ripped off” by its allies:

“We let Japan come in and dump everything right into our markets… They come over here, they sell their cars, their VCRs. They knock the hell out of our companies. And, hey, I have tremendous respect for the Japanese people.”

This will sound familiar to anyone who watched Trump’s kickoff speech, except replacing Japan with China. Anyway, this led Oprah to ask Trump if wanted to run for President, to which he replied:

“Probably not. But I do get tired of seeing the country get ripped off… I just don’t think I have the inclination to do it.”


“If it got so bad, I would never want to rule it out totally, because I really am tired of seeing what’s happening with this country,” Trump said. “We’re really making other people live like kings, and we’re not.”

This was a year after Trump said, “I have no intention of running for President.”

Also in this interview: Trump praises Jesse Jackson (“I think Jesse Jackson’s done himself very proud”) and Michael Dukakis (he’s done “one hell of a job” on the campaign thus far). How times have changed!

Fact Check: Did Trump say in ’98 Republicans are dumb?

Did Donald Trump tell People magazine in 1998 that if he ever ran for president, he’d do it as a Republican because “they’re the dumbest group of voters in the country” and that he “could lie and they’d still eat it up”?
A: No, that’s a bogus meme.

donald trump 1988 speech oprah

ORIGIN:The above-reproduced image and quote attributed to Donald Trump began appearing in our inbox in mid-October 2015. The format is easily recognizable as one wherein questionable or offensive words are attributed to the individual pictured, and in this case image claims that Donald Trump made the following statement in a 1998 interview with People magazine:

If I were to run, I’d run as a Republican. They’re the dumbest group of voters in the country. They believe anything on Fox News. I could lie and they’d still eat it up. I bet my numbers would be terrific.

Despite People‘s comprehensive online content archive, we found no interview or profile on Donald Trump in 1998 (or any other time) that quoted his saying anything that even vaguely resembled the words in this meme. Trump appeared somewhat regularly in the magazine’s pages before he came to star on The Apprentice, but the bulk of the magazine’s celebrity-driven coverage of him back then centered on his marriages to, and divorces from, Ivana Trump and Marla Maples.


Posted on: July 24, 2016, by :
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