YUMA, AZ - AUGUST 18: U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally at The Defense Contractor Complex on August 18, 2020 in Yuma, Arizona. Trump excoriated presumptive Democratic nominee former Vice President Joe Biden as being soft on illegal immigration as Democrats hold their convention this week remotely from Milwaukee. Hundreds waited in line in 104-degree heat to see the president, many without masks or maintaining distance from others, according to published reports. The crowd size inside the hangar was limited in a nod to the ongoing pandemic that has hit Yuma County particularly hard. (Photo by Sandy Huffaker/Getty Images)

Donald Trump Wanted to Trade Puerto Rico for Greenland

We cannot make this stuff up.
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Donald Trump still fancies himself a real estate tycoon and businessman, though he was never good at either pursuit. It turns out that he was apparently looking to treat America and the rest of the world like a bunch of properties he could buy and sell. So naturally, he tried to trade Puerto Rico for Greenland.

Wait, what?

We already knew that Trump, bizarrely, wanted to buy Greenland from Denmark. It was actually this day a year ago that the Prime Minister of Denmark politely told Trump that the land was not for sale. But that hasn’t stopped Trump and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo from dreaming big about acquiring the island. We’re not sure why, other than they might think it has oil.

Trump has been deep into this idea for a while, according to former DHS Official Miles Taylor, who has since left the administration and come out strongly as part of the Republican Voters against Trump. Taylor worked at DHS for two years under Trump, including time serving as chief of staff to DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen.

According to Taylor, who appeared today on MSNBC, on a trip to Puerto Rico (which Taylor places in 2018, however, Trump’s only visit occurred in 2017), Trump floated the idea of selling the territory so that the US could buy Greenland. Taylor says: “He wanted to see if we could swap Puerto Rico for Greenland, because in his words, Puerto Rico was dirty and the people were poor.”

This abominable stance from Trump is confirmed by at least one other account. Last month, former secretary of Homeland Security Elaine Duke also came out against Trump in scathing fashion. In an interview with The New York Times, Duke shared that in 2017 Trump floated the idea of selling Puerto Rico. “The president’s initial ideas were more of as a businessman, you know,” Dale told The Times. “Can we outsource the electricity? Can we sell the island? You know, or divest of that asset?”

To be clear about the timeline here, in 2017, when these discussions likely occurred, Puerto Rico was on Trump’s mind only because it had been devastated by Hurricane Maria and he had spectacularly failed in getting aid and services to the island. (Trump failed at disaster response? Sounds familiar!) Donald Trump is a patently horrible person and president, but the fact he saw part of America, the country he’s supposed to lead, suffering and in peril and his first instinct was to sell it off so he could buy some other land to develop? That’s inhuman and ridiculous at a level that we can barely comprehend.

Trump only cares about America in so far as he can profit off it and wield power. He doesn’t care about human beings, beyond tossing some hateful rhetoric to fire up his base, and ensuring the passage of policies that benefit others who only seek to profit. The rest of us are just bad investments to be discarded or traded off. And he’s not even good at business! This is the equivalent of being told your dog is sick and then asking if you can swap your dog in for a new scooter. It doesn’t even make sense!

Or maybe he’s right and swapping out is the best. So, can we get around to swapping out for a new President soon?

(via: MSNBC, image: andy Huffaker/Getty Images)

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Jessica Mason
Jessica Mason (she/her) is a writer based in Portland, Oregon with a focus on fandom, queer representation, and amazing women in film and television. She's a trained lawyer and opera singer as well as a mom and author.