The dust had not yet settled from the attacks on September 11, 2001, but Donald Trump wasted no time making what most of us consider a tragedy into something great for him. Politico reports that just hours after the Twin Towers fell, The Donald was already self-promoting, having agreed to do a live phone interview on a local television station in New York.
Trump said that he would “be taking a very, very tough line” with the terrorists if he were president at the time, but Politico notes that this was a different Trump than we’re used to seeing nowadays:
Compared to the flame-throwing temperament he has demonstrated throughout his current presidential campaign, the most striking revelation of the video from September 11, 2001—plucked exclusively at POLITICO’s request from the WWOR archives—is Trump’s composure and tone. A decade and a half before pledging to “bomb the shit out of” ISIS and proposing a deportation force and a Muslim ban, Trump didn’t talk about retribution or leap to conclusions about who was responsible. In fact, he avoided identifying potential enemies—any terrorist organization or Muslims in general. He spoke cogently and even poignantly about New York’s changed skyline and the need to never forget.
But even in this moment, hours after the worst terrorist attack our nation has faced, the GOP nominee couldn’t resist bragging about one of his f*cking buildings:
Only parenthetically in the middle of the 10-minute conversation did Trump turn to a favorite topic—size. “40 Wall Street,” he said, referring to his 71-story building blocks away from the now-collapsed twin towers, “actually was the second-tallest building in downtown Manhattan, and it was actually, before the World Trade Center, was the tallest—and then, when they built the World Trade Center, it became known as the second-tallest. And now it’s the tallest.”
The interviewer, former Trump publicist Alan Marcus, chalked it up to “Donald being Donald,” adding that “He is the brand manager of Trump, and he is going to tout that brand, and he does it reflexively, even on that day.”
It was “Donald being Donald,” but not in the way Marcus meant. Donald Trump is a terrible human being, no matter what day it is. But he was especially terrible on September 11, 2001, when he decided to brag about a building while a nation mourned the dead.
Hear it yourself below:
Featured image via Getty Images/Chris Hondros