Trump tried to hire a black friend for half a million dollars. He was rejected.
According to rapper and actor 50 Cent (real name: Curtis Jackson), Trump offered him $500,000 to appear at his poorly attended inauguration. 50 Cent turned him down because "all money is not good money."
50 Cent told the story during an appearance Tuesday on CBS' "The Late Late Show," sitting next to Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA).
Host James Corden asked him, "Has any politician tried to get your support? Have they courted you?"
During Trump's inauguration "they offered me a half a million dollars to do it," 50 Cent replied.
"To play at the inauguration?" Corden asked.
"No, just to come," 50 Cent replied.
He then explained, "I didn't do it because I didn't know if I could fix the damage, to be honest with you. All money is not good money. You've got to be careful with what you're doing publicly, because — I don't know how you fix that. I was like, whoa. Don't bring me to fix the African-American problem."
The audience loudly laughed at the reference to Trump's infamously ham-fisted approach to race relations.
Trump's inauguration is currently under criminal investigation by the Department of Justice, who is investigating the possible misuse of the $107 million it raised. It is unclear if the attempted 50 Cent payoff is part of the investigation.
Trump has been obsessed for a long time over the poor showing at his inauguration, which came soon after he lost to Hillary Clinton in the popular vote by nearly 3 million.
Photographs of the event showed that it clearly underperformed the previous two inaugurations of President Barack Obama, and perhaps even that of President George W. Bush.
Contributing to the poor attendance was Trump's long history of racism and bigotry. In the presidency he has made matters worse by using racial slurs, denigrating majority-black countries, and by praising Nazis as "very fine people."
50 Cent was right: Even a $500,000 payout couldn't erase distrust of Trump's racism. And things have gotten far worse since.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.