In less than two weeks, the American people will decide whether Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton will become the 45th President of the United States. Based on their prior relationships, playing out both behind the scenes and on television, one might surmise that Vince and Linda McMahon would be supporting Mr. Trump. But a recent report could suggest otherwise.
According to Daily Wrestling News, Vince has put a gag order on both current and former WWE employees as it pertains to the Republican Party nominee for POTUS, Donald Trump. It should come as no surprise that nearly every media outlet in the country has reached out to the WWE looking for comments on Trump. Both on the record and off of it, media organizations are looking for anything they can use before the election.
Some are digging for dirt on Trump while others are simply requesting interviews with important WWE management, including Vince or Linda, to show their support or just talk about their relationship with him. However, Vince has decreed that all WWE staff, employees, talent, etc. refrain from speaking to any member of the media about Trump or the election in general.
Apparently, former WWE employees have been reaching out to Vince in recent weeks, seeking advice on what to do when the media contacts them. Apparently, the Chairman of the WWE has been informing them to turn down any requests and provide no comment. Those former employees have largely been actual wrestlers who worked for Vince and the WWE in the past.
Trump is a member of the WWE Hall of Fame, inducted in 2013 by Vince McMahon himself. Trump joined Mick Foley, Bob Backlund, Trish Stratus, Bruno Sammartino and Booker T in that year’s class in a ceremony held at New York City’s Madison Square Garden. Trump’s induction came on the heels of six WrestleMania appearances, one of which took place in one of Trump’s Atlantic City casinos, the Trump Plaza.
His most recent WrestleMania appearance, of course, was the memorable storyline from 2007, in which he participated in the “Battle of the Billionaires” against Vince. Trump’s handpicked superstar, Bobby Lashley, defeated Umaga, in a match where Stone Cold Steve Austin was the referee. By virtue of the defeat, Vince was forced to have his head shaved as per the stipulation.
In return for Trump agreeing to appear on WWE programming, including an episode of RAW where he was featured in an angle that saw him purchase the show and run it without commercials, Vince and Linda have supported his efforts in the past. Most notably, the McMahons donated $5 million to the Donald J. Trump Foundation between 2007 and 2009, the largest amounts the foundation had received. Linda also contributed an additional $6 million to the Rebuilding America Now super PAC, a supporter of the Trump campaign.
It’s unknown whether the two are related, but former WWE and current TNA star Maria Kanellis recently spoke out against Trump and his campaign. Maria was a celebrity contestant on a season of The Apprentice, and she was asked by Newsweek about an ugly, sexist conversation that surfaced between Trump and Billy Bush that sparked national outrage.
“I’m not a Donald Trump presidential [candidate] supporter. I don’t believe anyone that’s trying to become president should say comments like that. Some will say, ‘It’s in the past,’ but if you’re trying to hold the highest office in the United States of America you should be cognizant of what you’ve said in the past or what you say today.”
Ironically, Maria was fired from The Apprentice for what Trump labeled “locker room talk” during the show. Of course, critics would say that’s just a term Trump used to try to deflect the audio tape that became public a few weeks ago. Maria was quick to point out the similarities.
“It was very interesting. He fired me for making a comment that he considered ‘locker room talk,’ but what he said was much, much worse. I don’t believe what he said was ‘locker room talk.’ What he said was speaking about an assault on a woman, because he was a celebrity…it’s incredibly disrespectful.”
[Featured Image by Bebeto Matthews/AP Images]