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The Latest In A Long Line Of People To Be Brazenly Scammed By Trump Is His Own White House Photographer

Donald Trump’s post-White House tenure still never shows a shortage of dull moments. From him putting out an actual press release about hitting a hole in one to sending out self-interested suggestions to Putin, it’s all Donald Trump looking out for himself. That’s nothing new, but hey, a faux-billionaire also has to make a buck. And since his social network is flopping, he’s decided to cash in by ripping someone else off.

That person would be his chief White House photographer, Shealah Craighead, who duly followed him around for four years, which really couldn’t have been the most leisurely gig in the world. And when she planned to do what is customary for White House photographers to do — compile the best images for a coffee-table book — Trump was like nah, hold off. As the New York Times reports, Trump first asked Craighead to pay him (with a chunk of her advance book payment) to write the (again customary) forward for the book. Then Trump decided to circumvent the whole subject by taking Craighead’s photos and publishing his own book (which he supplement with other White House photographers’ snaps), selling it for up to $230 per copy, and pocketing the dough.

Not only that, but Trump was apparently a major pain in the butt to Craighead over the course of four years, frequently belittling her and (unsurprisingly) acting obsessed with pictures of himself:

Mr. Trump at times would say insulting things about Ms. Craighead, telling other White House guests that he questioned her skills as a photographer, surprising other White House officials and photographers present.

Mr. Trump, former White House aides said, was intensely involved in selecting photos of himself that would be released to the public, with Ms. Grisham recalling how during long flights on Air Force One, he often set aside time to review folders of photographs, after demanding that they be first printed so he could hold them, and pick winners one at a time.

As the New York Times points out, there’s unfortunately no law that explicitly prevents Trump from taking the photos, assembling them, and publishing them, but it’s something that most presidents haven’t chosen to do, especially after asking the photographer to not publish her own book and cutting in line to do so himself. Craighead, for her part, declined to talk politics but indicated that she’s shut down the idea of going forth with a followup book of her own. And the Trump monetizing train keeps on going.

(Via New York Times)