Donald Trump Jr., patron saint of the self-made man, picked himself up by his bootstraps and wrote a New York Times best-selling book with absolutely no help at all — unless you count a small $100,000 purchase from his dad’s pals at the Republican National Committee.
Don Jr.’s opus — Triggered: How the Left Thrives on Hate and Wants to Silence Us — shot up to No. 1 on the hardcover nonfiction charts right when it dropped last week. But observers noted that Jr.’s title was the only one on the list accompanied by a symbol indicating sales boosted by a bulk purchase. The Trumps, and their compadres at the RNC, pushed back at the idea that the Trump son had a leg up.
“We haven’t made a large bulk purchase, but are ordering copies to keep up with demand,” said Mike Reed, an RNC spokesman, after the group sent an email fundraising off the book, according to the New York Times. “Each book is sold to an individual who supports the Republican Party.”
But it’s clear the RNC did exactly what they said they didn’t do — that is, they made a whopping bulk purchase. A Federal Election Commission disclosure revealed the RNC spent $94,800 on pre-order copies of Triggered, purchased from Books-A-Million as “donor mementos.”
Reed told the Times the RNC stood by their statement about bulk-purchasing, while adding the committee had already spent more dough on Triggered.
“The book has been hugely popular,” he told the paper.
The RNC has used the book to fundraise — the same day they made the huge purchase, they sent out an email promising a free copy to anyone who donated $50, BuzzFeed News reported. The committee says they’ve netted some $500,000 on the book.
There's a good chance the book would have still been at the top of the list without the bulk buy. NPD BookScan registered 71,000 sales for the first son’s book in its weekly report, a figure high enough to seemingly give Don Jr. a pretty big cushion over second place if the RNC bulk buy was discounted.
Trump Jr., meanwhile, last week took issue with the symbol next to his title — noting, fairly, that he still sold a lot of books without the RNC’s considerable help. Then, he suggested he’s the victim of some sort of conspiracy.
"I guess that's their way of exerting a little bit of revenge by putting an asterisk without getting into the details," he said on "Fox & Friends."
Cover: In this Oct. 15, 2019, file photo, Donald Trump Jr. speaks to supporters of his father, President Donald Trump, during a panel discussion in San Antonio. (AP Photo/Eric Gay, File)