Donald Trump plugs a book called 'Reasons to Vote for Democrats' on Twitter. But there's a catch

Donald Trump plugs a book called 'Reasons to Vote for Democrats' on Twitter. But there's a catch
President Trump tweets his endorsement of a book of mostly blank pages, "Reasons to Vote for Democrats." (Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times)

President Trump has used his favorite social media platform to make an unusual literary recommendation: a book called "Reasons to Vote for Democrats" by Michael J. Knowles.

Trump's plug isn't an indication that the Republican president is ready to reach across the aisle and work with his progressive detractors, however. The 256-page book is mostly blank, with a table of contents and chapter titles providing the only text.


Knowles' novelty book has become a big hit with Republicans. As of Monday morning, it ranked No. 85 among all books on Amazon, and it boasts blurbs from popular conservatives like Ben Shapiro ("Thorough.") and Michelle Malkin ("A real page-turner!").

Fans of Trump might be delighted by the book, but the idea behind it is not an original one. In December, former Oregon First Lady Cylvia Hayes, a Democrat, published "Surprising Reasons to Believe Trump Will Be a (Bigly) Great President!" under the pen name Dr. Ann Alystiam. The 150-page book, published by a small press in Bend, Ore., is entirely blank.

Knowles' book, which was released last week, is published by Threshold Editions, the conservative Simon & Schuster imprint that has also published books by Rush Limbaugh, Dinesh D'Souza and Glenn Beck, as well as Trump himself.

The imprint made news in December when it announced it would be publishing "Dangerous," a book by controversial conservative provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos, who had been banned from Twitter after a controversy following the harassment of "Saturday Night Live" actress Leslie Jones on the social media platform.

In February, after video recordings surfaced of Yiannopoulos appearing to defend sex between older men and underage boys, Threshold announced that it had canceled the "alt-right" author's book deal.

Stunt books like the ones by Knowles and Hayes have become somewhat ubiquitous in the last few months. On Amazon, customers can buy blank books with titles like "Why Trump Deserves Trust, Respect and Admiration" and "The Best Reasons to Vote for Democrats."

Many of the listings for the books make clear that the pages are blank. A disclaimer on Knowles' book reads, "Lefty lawyers require that we state the book is mostly blank and contains precisely 1,235 words."

Book recommendations from Trump are relatively rare. He has said in the past that he enjoys reading, but rarely has time to go through a whole book.

In the past, he's cited his own books, the Bible and "All Quiet on the Western Front" as his favorites.

But in an interview with Tucker Carlson last month, Trump seemed to struggle to name books with actual text in them that he'd recently read.

"Actually, I'm looking at a book, I'm reading a book, I'm trying to get started. Every time I do about a half a page, I get a phone call that there's some emergency, this or that," he said. "But we're going to see the home of Andrew Jackson today in Tennessee and I'm reading a book on Andrew Jackson. I love to read. I don't get to read very much, Tucker, because I'm working very hard on lots of different things, including getting costs down."