The John Allen Chau Society

Another scene from the Oval Office

Robert Welch, founder of the John Birch Society, with a portrait of John Birch; Brown University archives


[The Oval Office; TRUMP at his desk, Chief of Staff JOHN KELLY sitting in a straight-back chair, legs crossed, referring to a notepad.]

TRUMP: So that’s why they call them the Church Pews. Because they’re tough to get out of, like church pews. Also the sand is very fine, like quicksand. It’s the quickest sand. You get stuck in there, there’s just no hope. I didn’t have that problem because I know to avoid them, but the other guys, they have a problem. Oakmont’s a beautiful course. You ever play there?

KELLY: No, sir.

TRUMP: You play, though, right?

KELLY: Yes, sir. I’ve played with you, in fact.

TRUMP: I beat you every time, I bet.

KELLY: I believe so, sir.

TRUMP: Listen, enough small talk. I wanna do something about that guy the Indians killed.

KELLY: Indians, sir?

TRUMP: Well, some kind of natives, the ones that killed the guy on that island.

KELLY: You mean the missionary who was killed on North Sentinel Island last week? John Allen Chau?

TRUMP: Yeah. He was trying to smuggle Bibles and they killed him, like that John Birch they named the Society after.

KELLY: I believe you’re thinking of God's Smuggler, sir. The comic book. You remember — you brought it up in a literary discussion with the head of the National Endowment for the Arts last spring.

TRUMP: Oh yeah, the Chinese girl. See, I thought she’d appreciate that book, because one of the places God’s Smuggler was trying to bring the Bibles to was China. John Birch is a hero over there. [Waves hand dismissively] Ah, to hell with her — she can’t appreciate a good story, how was she ever head of a network! A network no one ever heard of: NEA. Name me one hit they ever had! It’s good we replaced her with that dance mom, the blond chick. She’s feisty. I could have fucked her, you know, but [shrugs, makes a face] too fat. We might get a show out of it though, I talked to the lawyers; they say it’s kosher and I can keep the money if we do it.

KELLY: Lawyers, sir?

TRUMP: Will you can it with the “yes sir”? You sound like Jeeves.

KELLY: [Getting up out of the chair, approaching TRUMP] What lawyers are you talking about?

TRUMP: [Not looking at him] Some guys I know.

KELLY: Guys?

TRUMP: A guy.

KELLY: What guy? Whitaker?

TRUMP: [Hotly] Look, what’s the point in having a guy on the inside if you can’t talk to him? It’s not like when I told him — I mean if I told him to fire some people! Also he’s good on showbiz things. He’s gonna trademark “NEA Dance Mom” for me.

KELLY: [Picking up the red line phone receiver from the President’s desk, to which TRUMP does not visibly react; to TRUMP, in an ever-so-slightly urgent voice] I cannot even tell you how many kinds of illegal this would be if it happened, which it didn’t, and if it did we’re going to make sure it unhappens. [On phone] Hi, Zach. Meet me in fifteen in the Rose Garden. We have to unfuck some shit. [Hangs up] Excuse my language. Sir.

TRUMP: Takes all kinds, that’s all I can say.

[TRUMP takes out and fiddles with his cell phone; KELLY stares at TRUMP, inscrutably; pause.]

KELLY: So about John Chau, Mr. President.

TRUMP: [Puts down cell phone, looks at KELLY] I think this is it, John. This is go time. The Mexicans pushed us, the Chinese pushed us, the Canadia people pushed us but I’ll be damned if we let the Sentinelese push us. You’re surprised I know how to say it, right? [In fact KELLY’s face betrays no surprise] I already got people putting a campaign together. Dirty Sentinelese. Turtle-eaters. They like to kill white people. I got a guy we can dress up like a tribesman, we can make a commercial where he brags about killing Whitey. By the time we invade people will be foaming at the mouth to get their hands on one of these bastards.

KELLY: Invade?

TRUMP: They'll rip ‘em to pieces. Like those boons who raped that girl in Central Park

KELLY: Invade? You want the United States to invade?

TRUMP: [Standing up, shouts] Hell yeah I’m gonna invade! Like Reagan did Grenada! Grenada wasn’t shit, but Reagan invaded because he knew what people wanted. And I know what they want! We’re gonna invade, we’re gonna kill, we're gonna win and you can’t do shit about it! [He picks up the red phone receiver]

KELLY: [Calmly] Alright, Mr. President. You do that. Call the Joint Chiefs and tell them to send an aircraft carrier to North Sentinel Island.

[Pause. TRUMP stares at KELLY. Some inquisitive noises from the phone receiver.]

TRUMP: [On the phone] Hang on a minute. [Puts receiver against his chest; to KELLY] Don't fuck with me, John. I’m a killer. I’m a killer. I’m doing this and you can’t stop me.

KELLY: [Hands folded behind his back] I’m not stopping you.

TRUMP: In fact I might want a nuclear strike on these bastards!

KELLY: That is indeed within your authority.

TRUMP: How do I do that? The nuclear strike?

KELLY: Tell the operator you want the football.

TRUMP: [Beat] And he just gives it to me?

KELLY: That’s right.

[TRUMP stares at KELLY, then sits down, receiver still cradled against his chest. His eyes dart back and forth. Pause. With his free hand he picks up his cell phone, then puts it down. Pause.]

TRUMP: [Brings phone to his mouth] Forget it. Wait. Send me a Diet Coke. [Looks at KELLY] Also move up my one o’clock prostitute, I’ll see her in fifteen minutes, Lincoln Bedroom. Have the tarp ready. [Hangs up; to KELLY] I guess you think this makes up for how bad I kicked your ass at Bedminster. You’re the worst golfer of all time. The absolute worst. They should take your clubs away and bury them someplace. As a golfer you’re a piece of shit. You’re not even a citizen —

[Door opens and a VALET, young, slim, and black, brings in a tray with a can of Diet Coke and a glass with ice on it. He puts the glass on the table, pours the drink, then puts the can back on the tray and turns to go. TRUMP watches him with interest.]

TRUMP: Just a minute. [Grabs can from the tray, shakes it] What’re you trying to pull? There’s still Coke in this can! You trying to steal from me? Huh? [Heavily places can on the desk] You’re fired!

[VALET looks confused; KELLY catches his eye, smiles slightly, cocks his head toward the door; VALET leaves]

TRUMP: No one gets over on me.

KELLY: Indeed not, sir.

TRUMP: I can kill anyone. Niggers, Iran, spics. I can kill you if I want.

KELLY: Without a doubt.

[Pause.]

TRUMP: So I decided we should all have Black Friday off. Take off, John. Take the whole weekend off.

KELLY: Thanks, Mr. President.

TRUMP: So what do you think you’re going to do with the time off?

KELLY: Testify.

TRUMP: What?

KELLY: Tenafly, sir. Tenafly, New Jersey.

TRUMP: Oh yeah, Tenafly. You have family there?

KELLY: Friends, sir. Thanks for asking.

TRUMP: Sure. [Gets up] OK, got a prostitute coming, see you. [Leaves]

[KELLY crosses to one of the couches and sits. The VALET comes back in. He pulls what looks like an earbud out of his ear.]

VALET: [to KELLY] Tenafly?

[He and KELLY erupt in laughter. CURTAIN.]