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'The Boston Globe' Imagines A Trump-Run America


We're going to turn now to politics and a campaign season that has seen its fair share of surprises. Here's another one. This morning, the opinion page of The Boston Globe has put out a fake front page dated one year from now that's designed to give a glimpse into what a possible Trump administration would look like on the pages of a newspaper. The headline at the top in big bold letters - "Deportations To Begin." Here to talk with us about this is Kathleen Kingsbury. She's the deputy managing editor for The Boston Globe's editorial page. Thanks so much for being with us this morning.

KATHLEEN KINGSBURY: Thank you for having me, Rachel.

MARTIN: I think it's safe to say this is a pretty bold move for a newspaper creating something that is completely false. Can you walk us through the decision-making process to do this?

KINGSBURY: Of course. I do want to point out that this is a political satire that's been produced by the editorial page. It's not fake news. We listened to Donald Trump's speeches. We scoured his website. We've read his policy papers. We've considered who his advisers are. We've really reported the doubt, and we wanted to lay out in black and white for our readers what Donald Trump's presidency that he's promising the American people would really look like.

MARTIN: So let's talk about the stories on this fictitious front page, the satire as you say. There's the headline piece about deportations beginning for illegal immigrants, another piece about a pending trade war with China. I'm looking at the website right now - the PDF file - markets sink as trade war looms.

There's a short little blurb about Trump insulting the Chinese first lady in a tweet. How did you decide what to include, and what were the rules about what you could or couldn't make up if you were a reporter who was writing this out?

KINGSBURY: We really wanted to take Donald Trump at his word. We took the policy positions that he has been stressing over the last few months and we filled in the details. Of course, we had a little bit of fun with it as all political satire does, but we really did want to use quotes from tweets that he had already made in speeches. And we played them out to their natural consequences.

MARTIN: You've already gotten hundreds of comments on this on your Facebook page alone - lots of people not pleased, mainly Trump supporters. And we should note that Donald Trump won the GOP primary in Massachusetts. But there were others who chimed in who said on your Facebook page they don't like Trump but they don't like the idea of their paper - and I'm quoting now - "stooping to trash media." Were any of your reporters or editors resistant to this?

KINGSBURY: This was very much a project of the editorial page. You know, for generations, newspapers have had editorial pages and news operations that have worked fully independent of each other. And the editorial page regularly comments on politics and other events. That's how we stay relevant. This was just taking that one step further than most of our readers are used to.

MARTIN: Any thoughts on doing the same thing for other candidates?

KINGSBURY: You know, the editorial page has never done anything like this before, and Donald Trump is such a unique candidate. His violent mix of intimidation, hostility to criticism and explicit scapegoating of minorities shows that there's a real political movement taking hold in America, and that's a movement that we find deeply disturbing, one that we really felt we needed to comment on.

MARTIN: Kathleen Kingsbury - she's the editorial page's deputy managing editor at The Boston Globe. Thanks so much for talking with us.

KINGSBURY: Thank you. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.