The Slatest

Trump Considered Airing a Literal Battle of the Races on The Apprentice

Trump’s hair circa 2005 (file photo).

Matthew Simmons/Getty Images

Donald Trump had an idea in 2005. He wasn’t happy with the previous season of his hit NBC show, The Apprentice, and he wanted to spice it up. So, he suggested in an interview with Howard Stern that the following season of the show should pit nine black contestants against nine white contestants in a literal battle of the races.

BuzzFeed’s McKay Coppins flagged the occurrence on Thursday, finding an episode of Trump’s radio show from July 11, 2005, in which he described the concept (this was a few months after he first floated it to Stern).

Trump said at the time he was considering ”an idea that is fairly controversial—creating a team of successful African Americans versus a team of successful whites. Whether people like that idea or not, it is somewhat reflective of our very vicious world.”

”Not everybody thinks it’s a good idea,” he acknowledged at the time, but a press representative of his told MSNBC that it was still on the table after reporters started calling to question the plan.

The reality show landscape in 2005 and Trump’s place in it are a bit nuts to think about now that Trump is the nominee of one of two major American parties for the presidency of the United States of America. From Coppins:

(In a bizarre bit of time-capsule trivia, multiple critics suggested Trump was inspired by a reality show that ABC had recently yanked before airing, Welcome to the Neighborhood, which would have allowed three white families in suburban Texas to choose their new neighbors from among a group of contestants that included Koreans, African-Americans, pagans, and a same-sex couple with an adopted black child.)

So yeah! This guy could be our president.