Inside Mary Trump’s War Against Donald Trump

The following article includes mentions of emotional abuse and sexual assault allegations.

All families have their problems, but we think it would be fair to say that the Trump family’s problems are, well, special (or, at least most publicized than most). While most of the former president’s closest relatives are pretty consistently in line with his whole MAGA ethos, there is one Trump family member who is decidedly not. That would be Donald’s niece, Mary L. Trump, the daughter of Donald’s brother, Fred Trump Jr.

While Mary didn’t start making national headlines until 2020, the year of the presidential election, it’s clear she’s had a bit of an ax to grind when it comes to her uncle for a while now. But she went extra hard during his final year in office, launching an all-out media war against Donald Trump, exposing salacious family secrets and, as a trained psychologist, even going so far as to diagnose him from afar.

Let’s take a closer look at what’s been driving Mary Trump’s long-held anti-Donald Trump campaign, the most explosive details she’s shared, and where she stands in the war against Trumpism today.

Mary Trump was a vocal supporter of Hillary Clinton

Unlike the rest of the Trump clan, it doesn’t look like Mary Trump ever wanted Donald Trump to become president. There’s also no evidence that she’s ever been a fan of the Republican party at all. As a matter of fact, back in 2016, when Donald was running against Democrat candidate Hillary Clinton, Mary was a vocal supporter of the former Secretary of State.

After Clinton lost the election to The Donald, Mary didn’t hold back at voicing her disgust on Twitter. She wrote, “Hillary Clinton is an extraordinary human being and public servant. That she lost to this is unspeakable.” Even if Mary wasn’t as big a Clinton fan as she clearly appears to be, referring to her uncle as “this” certainly seems to speak to her, uh, feelings about the former president.

But this tweet also indicates that Mary Trump had been wanting to get Donald Trump out of office for a very long time.

Donald Trump's niece first went totally public with a bombshell book in 2020

Despite having such strong, negative, and very public feelings toward Donald Trump, few people had heard about his niece, Mary Trump, until she published her bombshell tell-all book in 2020: “Too Much and Never Enough: How My Family Created the World’s Most Dangerous Man.” While the book ultimately concluded that Donald was unfit to be president, it also included several salacious details that hadn’t been revealed before.

For example, to showcase how the former POTUS had allegedly taken on “cheating as a way of life,” the book claimed that Donald once paid a friend to take the SATs for him, per The New York Times. As Vanity Fair previously reported, the former president was reportedly “obsessed” with hiding his SAT scores, and if Mary’s allegations are correct, we now know why: They were phony (allegedly). Donald’s — or Donald’s apparent stand-in’s — high score on the standardized test is what helped him get into the “University of Pennsylvania’s prestigious Wharton business school,” per the Times, which he often, as Mary wrote, called “super genius stuff” and “the best school in the world.”

Other jaw-dropping claims Mary made about what she called her “malignantly dysfunctional family” in her first book included the accusation that, when her father, Fred Trump Jr., was sent to the hospital on the night of his death, not one member of his family came with him. She alleged that, instead, Donald went to the movies, per Politico. Yikes.

Mary Trump and her brother were allegedly denied an inheritance

The bad blood between Mary Trump and her estranged uncle, Donald Trump, started long before “The Apprentice” alum ever became president of the United States. In addition to what Mary has described as Donald’s allegedly cruel treatment of his brother and her father, Fred Trump Jr., she has also sued him for supposedly cheating her out of her rightful inheritance. 

It’s no secret that Donald’s relationship with taxes and money generally has been a bit suspicious over the years, per The New York Times, but what Mary has accused him of seems particularly dirty, if true. According to the 2020 lawsuit, The Washington Post reports, when Fred Jr. died in 1981 — during Mary’s teens — Donald and his siblings, Robert and Maryanne Barry Trump, wrested control of all of his assets, which included Mary and her brother’s inheritance. Per the lawsuit, the trio were “committed to watch over [Mary Trump’s] interests as fiduciaries. They lied.”

The Trump siblings allegedly “siphon[ed]” money away from Mary’s inheritance and fibbed about their real worth to avoid tax liability and cheat her out of what was rightfully hers. In addition to fraud and conspiracy, the lawsuit alleged “violations of fiduciary duties.”

She released audio of her aunt disparaging Donald Trump

Aside from Mary Trump herself, the Trump family has publicly pretty much closed ranks and toed the family line when it comes to the former reality-star-turned-president. But Mary Trump came with the receipts when she claimed she wasn’t the only family member who ever doubted Donald Trump. See: the audio tapes she secretly recorded of her aunt and Donald’s sister, Maryanne Barry, allegedly disparaging her brother, as obtained by The Washington Post.

“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,” Barry appeared to say in the audio clip. But she didn’t stop there. “His godd**ned tweet and lying, oh my God,” the former federal judge added of her younger brother’s time as president. “I’m talking too freely, but you know. The change of stories. The lack of preparation. The lying. Holy s**t.” Barry also reportedly sounded off her disapproval of the Trump administration’s policies at the U.S.-Mexico border, and stated that Donald “doesn’t read.” She also seemed to echo a lot of what Mary herself had been saying about her uncle: “It’s the phoniness of it all. It’s the phoniness and this cruelty. Donald is cruel.”

With this secretly recorded audio recording coming out a month before Mary filed her inheritance-related fraud lawsuit, then-White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany claimed, “The only fraud committed there was Mary Trump recording one of her relatives, and she’s really discredited herself.”

Mary Trump has accused Donald Trump of using racist slurs

Mary Trump kept the hits coming when she was promoting her tell-all book, “Too Much and Never Enough,” including offering insight into whether or not she’d ever heard her uncle, former President Donald Trump, say racist slurs out loud. “Yeah, of course I did,” she told Rachel Maddow in a 2020 MSNBC interview. “And I don’t think that should surprise anybody, given how virulently racist he is today.” She went on to allege, “Growing up, it was sort of normal to hear [the Trump family] use the N-word or use anti-Semitic expressions.”

Donald had been accused of racism by many people in the past — one specific example was how hard he pushed the birtherism lie about President Barack Obama, per The Atlantic. But these shocking allegations from a first-hand account of the former POTUS having a history of using violently racist words out loud made headlines.

Donald Trump's niece felt he was an incompetent POTUS

As Donald Trump’s niece, it’s plausible that Mary Trump is in a better position than most to assess his capabilities and aptitude for the job of president. … And she’s not been very complimentary. 

In a 2020 interview with ABC News (via NBC News), Mary admitted that she at first felt a little sorry for then-President Trump. “You know, he’d never been in a situation before where he wasn’t entirely protected from criticism, or accountability, or things like that,” she said, adding, “I just remember thinking, he seems tired, he seems — this is not what he signed up for, if he even knows what he signed up for.” But while Mary may have been at least somewhat supportive in the beginning, by the end of Donald’s four years in office, she called on him to “resign,” saying, “[Donald is] utterly incapable of leading this country, and it’s dangerous to allow him to do so.”

Mary had even stronger words following the January 6, 2021 insurrection at the Capitol, saying in an interview with CBS News that Donald Trump should be “barred from ever running for public office again.” She also claimed that, because Donald had apparently never learned to deal with the concept of losing, he was becoming “increasingly desperate and dangerous, in [her] view.”

Mary Trump was a key source in the NYT's tax returns report

Mary Trump’s first major move against former President Donald Trump came a few months after his inauguration in 2017. That April, she became a key source for The New York Times’ article — published the following year — that indicated that Donald had allegedly used “dubious tax schemes” to “[receive] the equivalent today of at least $413 million from his father’s real estate empire.” 

In her 2020 tell-all book, “Too Much and Never Enough,” Mary revealed that she was hesitant when Times journalist Susanne Craig first approached her (via CNN). But the longer she watched her uncle in action, the stronger she felt she needed to do whatever was in her power to stop him. “As I watched our democracy disintegrating and people’s lives unraveling because of my uncle’s policies, I kept thinking about Susanne Craig’s letter,” Mary wrote. “I found her business card and called her.” 

Mary Trump ended up providing the Times journalists with 19 boxes of documents. “​​When I showed them the boxes, there were hugs all around,” she said. “It was the happiest I’d felt in months.”

As a psychologist, Mary Trump has opinions on her uncle's mental state

Former President Donald Trump has been diagnosed with various personality disorders from afar by plenty of clinical psychiatrists (and armchair psychologists), and Mary Trump — a trained psychologist herself — hasn’t been shy when it comes to diagnosing her famous uncle. 

In her “Too Much and Never Enough” book, she claimed that Donald is a “textbook narcissist.” She wrote (TNR), “Nothing is ever enough. This is far beyond garden-variety narcissism; Donald is not simply weak, his ego is a fragile thing that must be bolstered every moment because he knows deep down that he is nothing of what he claims to be.” In another section, Mary explained, “The fact is, Donald’s pathologies are so complex and his behaviors so often inexplicable that coming up with an accurate and comprehensive diagnosis would require a full battery of psychological and neuro-physical tests, that he’ll never sit for.”

Mary also alleged that Donald’s upbringing made it impossible for him to admit he’s ever lost anything, which is why she believed he was incapable of conceding the 2020 election. “There’s literally nothing he can do about this, so it’s sort of unfathomable, because in my family, losing was literally the worst thing you could do,” she said on “The View.” Mary went on to allege (via the Daily Beast), “He has serious psychological disorders, which wouldn’t have been of any interest to us if he had no power and if he didn’t have the ability to inflict pain on other people.”

Donald Trump's niece blamed her grandfather, Fred Trump Sr., for a lot of trauma

Though Mary Trump hasn’t shied away from calling Donald Trump a “narcissist” or claiming that he lacks empathy, she’s alleged that his personality is largely a result of his upbringing, and specifically due to alleged psychological abuse on the part of his father and her grandfather, Fred Trump Sr.

“Fred destroyed Donald, too, but not by snuffing him out as he did [my father] Freddy; instead, he short-circuited Donald’s ability to develop and experience the entire spectrum of human emotion,” she wrote in “Too Much and Never Enough” (via Politico). “By limiting Donald’s access to his own feelings and rendering many of them unacceptable, Fred perverted his son’s perception of the world and damaged his ability to live in it.” In the book, she also called Fred Sr. a “high-functioning sociopath” who equated kindness with weakness.

Mary further alleged that the damage Fred Sr. inflicted on Donald led him to become the man he is today. “Having been abandoned by his mother for at least a year, and having his father fail not only to meet his needs but to make him feel safe or loved, valued or mirrored, Donald suffered deprivations that would scar him for life,” she wrote, adding, “He rants about the weakness of others even as he demonstrates his own. But he can never escape the fact that he is and always will be a terrified little boy.”

If you or someone you know is dealing with domestic abuse, you can call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1−800−799−7233. You can also find more information, resources, and support at their website.

Mary Trump's been active on social media criticizing her uncle

Mary Trump has also taken her crusade to stop Donald Trump from maintaining or regaining power to social media. Her Twitter feed is full of criticism and insights into the former president (as well as some trolling, as pictured above). In 2021 alone, she has referred to him as “the Disgraced Former Occupant” who is “responsible for the deaths of over 500,000 Americans” due to the COVID-19 pandemic, supported lawsuits taken up against her uncle, and claimed, “He’s calling for the lynching of a Capitol police officer. And he’s a traitor.” In one slightly more light-hearted tweet, she mocked his “man, woman, person, camera, TV” interview flub with, “Person, Woman, Tuition, School, School.”

The psychologist has also shown a lot of support on Twitter for writer E. Jean Carroll, who has accused Donald Trump of rape and sued him for defamation, by often retweeting Carroll and boosting articles that support her. Furthermore, Mary has called Carroll a “warrior” who “deserves to have her case heard.”

Hey, you could never accuse Mary Trump of being shy or mincing her words.

If you or anyone you know has been a victim of sexual assault, help is available. Visit the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network website or contact RAINN’s National Helpline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).

Donald Trump has tried to silence and discredit Mary Trump

Former President Donald Trump has never really been known to let criticism slide, so it’s not surprising to learn that he tried to stop Mary Trump’s first book from ever seeing the light of day, and then tried to make her look as bad as possible once it was published. From the title alone, the Trump family probably had some indication of what Mary’s 2020 tell-all, “Too Much and Never Enough: How My Family Created the World’s Most Dangerous Man,” would contain. According to The New York Times, the former president’s younger brother, Robert S. Trump, attempted to file a temporary restraining order to block it from being published, claiming that the book violated a nondisclosure agreement Mary had supposedly signed. Unfortunately for them, they were unsuccessful.

Of course, Donald wasn’t going to let Mary’s allegations go unresponded to. In an interview with Fox News, he told Chris Wallace, “She was not exactly a family favorite. We didn’t have a lot of respect or like for her.” The then-POTUS also called the book “so stupid and so vicious.”

Naturally, The Donald also went after his estranged niece on Twitter, calling her (via Politico) “a seldom seen niece who knows little about me, says untruthful things about my wonderful parents (who couldn’t stand her!) and me.” In other tweets, per The Hill, he referred to Mary as “an unstable niece, who was now rightfully shunned, scorned and mocked her entire life, and never even liked by her own very kind & caring grandfather!”

Her second book, The Reckoning, is about national 'trauma' following the Trump presidency

Mary Trump’s metaphoric war against Donald Trump didn’t end when he lost the 2020 presidential election, which she had stated was a goal of hers. At the time of this writing, she’s about to publish her second non-fiction book in August 2021, titled “The Reckoning: Our Nation’s Trauma and Finding a Way to Heal,” which would highlight how the U.S. has moved on from the Trump presidency.

The book’s description reads: “‘The Reckoning’ will examine America’s national trauma, rooted in our history but dramatically exacerbated by the impact of current events and the Trump administration’s corrupt and immoral policies. Our failure to acknowledge this trauma, let alone root it out, has allowed it to metastasize. Whether it manifests itself in rising levels of rage and hatred, or hopelessness and apathy, the stress of living in a country we no longer recognize has affected all of us.” (We have a feeling the former president isn’t going to love this one either.)

During an appearance on “The View,” Mary noted, “When I say this is exactly who we are, I mean that after four years of cruelty and mass death, for which Donald is directly responsible, 74 million people still voted for him. We’re dealing with tens of millions of people who seem perfectly comfortable with the end of democracy in our country simply so their minority can stay in power, and it’s quite frightening.” 

At the time of this writing, Donald Trump hasn’t publicly commented on Mary Trump’s book No. 2.

Why Mary Trump has considered changing her name

Now that the last name of Trump is so closely associated with a man she’s so openly despised — her uncle and former President Donald Trump — it’s perhaps not all that surprising that Mary Trump has debated changing her own surname. In an interview with The Telegraph, Mary explained that she feared how the negative “connotations” associated with the name of Trump could impact her life in the future, saying, “I am prepared to change my name if need be.” 

Considering the types of things The Donald has said about his estranged niece in the past, including that nobody in the family even likes her, we’re somewhat doubtful that he’d be too offended if she did go ahead with altering her famous moniker. Then again, there’s no denying that in keeping the Trump last name, Mary would most likely still gain a lot of public interest for her insider look at the Trump clan. And hey, she’d hardly be the first political family member to disavow their relatives’ politics, but keep the family name. See: Ron Reagan Jr. and Porter McConnell, for starters.

Either way, despite sharing the same last name, we don’t think anyone could mistake Mary Trump for a Donald Trump fan at this point.

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