President Trump's sudden race and subsequent win for the White House in 2016 probably blindsided a lot of people. But there's at least one person who long knew that it was in the cards for him: his second wife, Marla Maples. On Tuesday, Dec. 18, the actress sat down for an interview with the TODAY show, and Marla Maples' comment about Donald Trump running for president revealed she's apparently known about his ambitions since the '90s. Elite Daily reached out to the White House for comment on or confirmation of her remarks, but did not hear back by the time of publication.
Responding to whether she thought Trump would ever be president, Maples told the hosts: "Oh gosh, yes. Absolutely." According to Maples, Trump considered running at some point in their relationship in the early 1990s, but the couple ultimately figured it would be too tough on their kids. "Donnie, Ivanka and Eric were much younger, and it's a big toll ... It's a whole other world," she said.
Trump and Maples were first linked in 1989, when he was still married to his first wife, Ivana, and were together until they officially split in 1999. If you're doing the math here, those years saw both President George H.W. Bush and President Bill Clinton in office. Now imagine if Trump had run for office and taken office instead: His incendiary threats to foreign leaders and his critics would've likely been said face-to-face instead of through Twitter, which seems like a nightmare. His affair with Maples would have been tabloid fodder (I mean, more than it actually was). And we wouldn't have had all these troves of memes and jokes about his bizarre presidential efforts and other wild moments. IDK about you, but it's a solid no from me.
Still, Trump had been talking about running for quite some time before he ran and won the White House in 2016. When asked about the possibility of a presidential bid by Oprah Winfrey in 1988, he told the famous host that he "probably" wouldn't, but quickly backpedaled, adding, per NPR:
I would never want to rule it out totally, because I really am tired of seeing what's happening with this country, how we're really making other people live like kings, and we're not.
"I think I'd win," he added.
In 1999, he told Larry King that he was planning to form a presidential exploratory committee to test the waters of a potential bid. "We'll see," he said of his potential bid, per NPR. "We're going to take a very good, strong look at it."
The same year, he officially made a bid for the Reform Party for the 2000 presidential race, although he quit after determining the party could not provide the "support a candidate needs to win," according to The Hill. But he continued to make repeated comments on topics that fueled his bid for office over the years, including on immigration, trade policies, and proper leadership. And boom — here we are.
Who knew, huh? If you listen closely now, perhaps we'll be able to determine where he goes once he's done with his presidency.