Why Did Alex Salmond Take So Long to Turn on Donald Trump?
One of the reasons for Donald Trump’s baffling dominance of the polls in the Republican presidential race is the fear factor. The billionaire property developer preys on American voters’ fears over immigration and the perceived threat of terrorism.
As I discovered while making the films You’ve Been Trumped and A Dangerous Game, fear was also at play when Trump came to Scotland in 2007 – he preyed on politicians’ fears that North Sea oil was running out. Business leaders in Aberdeen responded to his promise of 6,000 jobs through the building of a luxury Trump golf resort, as “the second coming of oil”. And one of the first in line to talk up the development was Alex Salmond.
Last week, in an extraordinary outburst, the former Scotland first minister branded Donald Trump “three times a loser” after the UK supreme court rejected the billionaire’s attempt to block the construction of a wind farm near his golf course.
Salmond’s attack bounced off Trump, who has long considered the former SNP leader an irrelevance. But Salmond’s comments were a deep insult to people living close to the Trump development, in Salmond’s own constituency.
Trump’s development, in Aberdeenshire, employs fewer than 100 people and has lost millions of pounds since it opened. But only now has Salmond decided to dump on Trump – his comments triggered by a London court decision about a wind farm rather than the plight of his constituents.