Donald Trump has been lying about his intellectual prowess for years.
Trump simply watched as stories as far back as the 1970’s reported he had graduated first in his class from the prestigious Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania. As Salon reported in 2011, The New York Times published a profile of Trump in January 1973, writing, “Donald, who was graduated first in his class at the Wharton School of Finance of the University of Pennsylvania, joined his father five years ago.” The Times doubled down in 1976, writing, “He continued helping his father make deals while a student at the Wharton School of Finance at the University of Pennsylvania, from which he graduated first in his class in 1968.”
Well, now, just where did the Times get that piece of information? Especially when you consider this:
Trump is famous for reading every story about himself; even carrying clippings about himself around. And when you add the fact that Trump apparently acted as his own publicist under a pseudonym in order to brag about his romantic exploits, it’s possible that the Times got that false piece of information about graduating first from Lyin’ Donald.
Trump likes to brag about his intellectual capabilities, telling CNN in 2004, “I went to the Wharton School of Finance, I got very good marks.” And as late as last summer:
So what’s the truth about Trump’s not-so-prestigious college career? He spent two ordinary years at Fordham University in New York before he transferred to Wharton, only admitted because, as biographer Gwenda Blair wrote in 2001, he got a special favor from a “friendly” admissions officer who had known Trump’s older brother Freddy. Blair reported that Trump’s grades at Fordham were”respectable.”
In Trump’s book, Trump: The Art of the Deal, he wrote of Wharton, “It didn’t take long to realize that there was nothing particularly awesome or exceptional about my classmates, and that I could compete with them just fine.”
Not so much, apparently. Steve Perelman, a 1968 Wharton classmate and a former Daily Pennsylvanian news editor, said, “He was not in any kind of leadership. I certainly doubt he was the smartest guy in the class.” Another classmate, Larry Krohn, echoed, “Four years — including lots of required classes — is a long time never to hear of a classmate, especially with such a distinctive name.” Some classmates said Trump skipped class, while others believed he commuted to New York on weekends.
Last August, Trump told Chuck Todd of Meet the Press that Wharton was “probably the hardest there is to get into,” adding, “Some of the great business minds in the world have gone to Wharton.” Todd asked, “Why do you have to tell us all the time that you went to Wharton? People know you’re successful.” Trump: “They know it’s a great business school.”
“I went to the Wharton School of Finance, I got very good marks.”
So release your transcripts, Donald.
In April, 2011, Trump savaged Barack Obama, snapping, “I heard [Obama] was a terrible student, terrible. How does a bad student go to Columbia and then to Harvard?”
Yet Trump has adamantly refused to release his own college transcripts. And unlike the truly brilliant minds that come out of Wharton, Trump did not attend Wharton’s prestigious MBA program; he only he received an undergraduate degree.
Last July, Funny or Die released a hilarious video that now seems prescient: Donald Trump: POW (Prisoner of Wharton).