Donald Trump's Bible Sale Is His Most Controversial Fundraiser Yet

Perhaps a bit short on cash after the verdict of his New York fraud trial, Donald Trump has been upping his merch game lately. In addition to the usual MAGA accessories and NFT trading cards portraying him in various heroic roles, Trump unveiled his red-soled gold sneaker line that proved highly profitable on the resale market. But his latest venture may have crossed a risky line. 

On March 26, 2024 — Easter Sunday — the former president posted a video both to his own social media platform and to Rumble, promoting the "God Bless the U.S.A." Bible. This special leather-bound edition of the King James version of the Good Book includes not only the standard text, but also a copy of the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, the Pledge of Allegiance, and the lyrics to country star Lee Greenwood's famous song ("And I'm proud to be an American/Where at least I know I'm free..."). All this is available to the faithful for $60, no refunds.

"It's very important, and very important to me," Trump explained. "You have to have it for your heart, for your soul." He stated he personally has "many" copies of the Bible at home, and urged his followers to "make America pray again." The order website touts this as the only Bible personally endorsed by Trump, but adds it "has nothing to do with any political campaign." Still, the licensing agent has worked with Trump to book speaking engagements reportedly netting him $5 million, according to CNBC.

Donald Trump's Bible promo is catching heat

Donald Trump's merchandise ventures aren't surprising, given his business background. But his shill for the "God Bless the U.S.A. Bible" strikes many as going too far. Critics are both amused and alarmed by Trump's advertisement, in which he says "religion and Christianity are the biggest things missing from this country." Even his fellow conservatives took issue. In an MSNBC interview, Charlie Sykes accused Trump of "commodifying the Bible during Holy Week." Liz Cheney commented on X, "Happy Holy Week, Donald. Instead of selling Bibles, you should probably buy one. And read it, including Exodus 20:14." (The passage is the commandment "Thou shalt not commit adultery.") The panel of "The View" was similarly outraged. Former Trump aide Alyssa Farah Griffin, who once called Trump "unfixable," commented that trying to profit off the Scriptures "tells you all you need to know about the man." 

Others on social media have pointed out the Bible in question isn't a new product. It was originally released in 2021 by an unknown independent after HarperCollins' Zondervan imprint backed out of a potential deal. Per Religion Unplugged, they may have been influenced by a petition protesting the book's Christian nationalism. Meidas Touch reveals many customers have complained of orders that never shipped. Even some of Lee Greenwood's fans are disappointed. The musician posted a promotion on Instagram, and a follower replied, "Used to love your music, it's now tainted and never will be played in my home again."