NATIONAL NEWS

Trump is selling ‘God Bless the USA’ Bibles for $59.99 as he faces mounting legal bills

Mar 27, 2024, 8:59 AM

President Donald Trump holds a Bible as he visits outside St. John's Church across Lafayette Park f...

President Donald Trump holds a Bible as he visits outside St. John's Church across Lafayette Park from the White House Monday, June 1, 2020, in Washington. Park of the church was set on fire during protests on Sunday night. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

(AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

NEW YORK (AP) — Former President Donald Trump is now selling Bibles as he runs to return to the White House.

Trump, who became the presumptive Republican nominee earlier this month, released a video on his Truth Social platform on Tuesday urging his supporters to buy the “God Bless the USA Bible,” which is inspired by country singer Lee Greenwood’s patriotic ballad. Trump takes the stage to the song at each of his rallies and has appeared with Greenwood at events.

“Happy Holy Week! Let’s Make America Pray Again. As we lead into Good Friday and Easter, I encourage you to get a copy of the God Bless the USA Bible,” Trump wrote, directing his supporters to a website selling the book for $59.99.

The effort comes as Trump has faced a serious money crunch amid mounting legal bills while he fights four criminal indictments along with a series of civil charges. Trump was given a reprieve Monday when a New York appeals court agreed to hold off on collecting the more than $454 million he owes following a civil fraud judgment if he puts up $175 million within 10 days. Trump has already posted a $92 million bond in connection with defamation cases brought by the writer E. Jean Carroll, who accused Trump of sexual assault.

“All Americans need a Bible in their home, and I have many. It’s my favorite book,” Trump said in the video posted on Truth Social. “I’m proud to endorse and encourage you to get this Bible. We must make America pray again.”

Billing itself as “the only Bible endorsed by President Trump!” the new venture’s website calls it “Easy-to-read” with “large print” and a “slim design” that “invites you to explore God’s Word anywhere, any time.”

Besides a King James Version translation, it includes copies of the U.S. Constitution, the Bill of Rights, the Declaration of Independence and the Pledge of Allegiance, as well as a handwritten chorus of the famous Greenwood song.

The Bible is just the latest commercial venture that Trump has pursued while campaigning.

Last month, he debuted a new line of Trump-branded sneakers, including $399 gold “Never Surrender High-Tops,” at Sneaker Con in Philadelphia. The venture behind the shoes, 45Footwear, also sells other Trump-branded footwear, cologne and perfume.

Trump has also dabbled in NFTs, or nonfungible tokens, and last year reported earning between $100,000 and $1 million from a series of digital trading cards that portrayed him in cartoon-like images, including as an astronaut, a cowboy and a superhero.

He has also released books featuring photos of his time in office and letters written to him through the years.

The Bible’s website states the product “is not political and has nothing to do with any political campaign.”

“GodBlessTheUSABible.com is not owned, managed or controlled by Donald J. Trump, The Trump Organization, CIC Ventures LLC or any of their respective principals or affiliates,” it says.

Instead, it says, “GodBlessTheUSABible.com uses Donald J. Trump’s name, likeness and image under paid license from CIC Ventures LLC, which license may be terminated or revoked according to its terms.”

CIC Ventures LLC, a company that Trump reported owning in his 2023 financial disclosure, has a similar arrangement with 45Footwear, which also says it uses Trump’s “name, likeness and image under paid license from CIC Ventures LLC, which license may be terminated or revoked according to its terms.”

A Trump spokesperson and God Bless the USA Bible did not immediately respond to questions about how much Trump was paid for the licensing deal or stands to make from each book sale.

Trump remains deeply popular with white evangelical Christians, who are among his most ardent supporters, even though the thrice-married former reality TV star has a long history of behavior that often seemed at odds with teachings espoused by Christ in the Gospels.

When he was running in 2016, Trump raised eyebrows when he cited “Two Corinthians” at Liberty University, instead of the standard “Second Corinthians.”

When asked to share his favorite Bible verse in an interview with Bloomberg Politics in 2015, he demurred.

“I wouldn’t want to get into it. Because to me, that’s very personal,” he said. “The Bible means a lot to me, but I don’t want to get into specifics.”

When he was president, law enforcement officers aggressively removed racial justice protesters from a park near the White House, allowing Trump to walk to nearby St. John’s Church, where he stood alone and raised a Bible. The scene was condemned at the time by the bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Washington.

Before he ran for office, Trump famously hawked everything from frozen steaks to vodka to a venture named Trump University, which was later sued for fraud.

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Trump is selling ‘God Bless the USA’ Bibles for $59.99 as he faces mounting legal bills