Donald Trump has spent a lot of time in the last year trying to make news, first with his birther obsession, and more recently demanding comedian Bill Maher pay him $5 million. (Maher offered the sum for proof Trump wasn’t the “spawn of his mother having sex with an orangutan.” Trump released his own birth certificate and threatened to sue Maher for the money.)
Now Trump is exploring ways to make news in a more literal way: by acquiring the New York Times. According to sources familiar with the situation, Trump has engaged in more than one meeting to discuss how he might buy the Grey Lady. Details of Trump’s strategy remain scant. And it seems unlikely, to say the least, that the Sulzberger family, which controls the company’s voting shares, would welcome his offer.
A spokesperson for Trump declined to comment. The Times also declined to comment. The newspaper has long been rumored to be a coveted trophy for acquisitive billionaires, with Mayor Michael Bloomberg commonly mentioned as a potential buyer.
Trump certainly has many opinions on how Times journalism should be conducted. For instance, when columnist Gail Collins derided Trump’s birther obsession in 2011, calling him “the man who can make Bill O’Reilly look like the most sensible guy in the room,” Trump responded with a letter to the editor claiming that Collins’s “storytelling ability and word usage (coming from me, who has written many bestsellers), is not at a very high level. More importantly, her facts are wrong!”