After The Art of the Deal went into paperback in 1988, Trump contemplated challenging Ed Koch in the race for mayor of New York City. Stone was again consulted along with Republican National Committee chairman Lee Atwater. Atwater was as rough as they came. He once explained, with shocking candor, how political race-bating had evolved since the 1950s. “By 1968 you can’t say ‘nigger’—that hurts you, backfires,” he said. “So you say stuff like, uh, ‘forced busing, states’ rights,’ and all that stuff, and you’re getting so abstract. Now, you’re talking about cutting taxes, and all these things you’re talking about are totally economic things and a byproduct of them is, blacks get hurt worse than whites. … “We want to cut this,” is much more abstract than even the busing thing, and a hell of a lot more abstract than ‘Nigger, nigger.’”

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