Yesterday Donald Trump’s representatives published two letters to the media. One was from a military doctor, declaring that he had just examined Trump, and that Trump was in excellent health. The other was from a porn actress, declaring that she had never had sex with Trump. The surreal nature of all this gets even weirder when you realize that both these letters were rather obvious fakes.
First, Trump’s people coughed up a brief letter generically stating that Trump was in impossibly good health. All you have to do is watch him struggle to get through a speech to know that he’s in fairly poor physical shape. So why would a military doctor lie? For the same reason that a doctor would spell his own name incorrectly. His name is Ronny Jackson, but the letter from Trump’s people is authored by “Ronnie Jackson.” In other words, Trump’s people wrote the statement themselves, and spelled the doctor’s name wrong.
That same day, after the Wall Street Journal reported that Trump had an affair with Stormy Daniels in 2006, Trump’s people coughed up a letter from Daniels in which she asserted that it never happened. The trouble: it was signed “Stormy Daniels.” That’s her acting name. Her real name is Stephanie Clifford. No actor would sign their stage name on a legal document, for the same reason you wouldn’t sign your name “Bob Smith” on a legal document if your legal name is Robert Smith.
It’s not that her signature was necessarily forged. It’s more likely that Donald Trump’s people wrote the letter on her behalf, and told her she had to sign it in order to get (or keep) the settlement money, and they were the ones who typed “Stormy Daniels” on the signature line; she signed her name that way because she was told to. Not only are Trump and his people profoundly dishonest, they’re profoundly sloppy as well. If you’re going to write and publish a letter in someone else’s name, at least find out what their name is first.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report