Arms crossed, Donald Trump stares out proudly from under the iconic, red "TIME" masthead, while an all-capped headline blares: "TRUMP IS HITTING ON ALL FRONTS... EVEN TV!”
Copies of the Time magazine cover, dated March 1, 2009, were seen hanging prominently in at least four of President Trump's golf resorts, flanked by other framed magazine pages celebrating Trump, his family, or his companies.
It even made it to his Trump Tower office in Manhattan. A 2012 photo shows the fake framed copy on his desk as he greets Malachy, the Pekingese who won Westminster's Best In Show that year.
The only problem, as the Washington Post discovered, is it's not real.
There was no March 1, 2009, issue of Time, and Trump did not grace the cover of the magazine at all that year. However, his TV show The Celebrity Apprentice did premiere on March 1, 2009.
A spokesperson for Time Inc. confirmed to BuzzFeed News that the magazine cover is a fake, and that the company has asked the Trump Organization to remove the doctored covers from all locations where it is displayed.
While at first glance the magazine looks just like the real thing, the red border of the fake cover is thinner, the headlines are stacked in the wrong place, and it features two exclamation points — a favorite punctuation mark of Trump's, but one not usually found in actual Time headlines.
The cover, which declares: “Donald Trump: The ‘Apprentice’ is a television smash!" was spotted at two locations inside Trump's resort in Doral, Florida; hanging in the dining room of the Trump golf course in Loudoun County, Virginia; and at golf resorts in Ireland and Scotland, the Post reported.
It was also spotted at Mar-a-Lago, the Florida estate Trump often visits when he's not at the White House. The Tampa Bay Times' Scott Keeler snapped a photo of the fake magazine cover at the estate while on assignment last July.
Photos from TripAdvisor also show the fake cover hanging near the fireplace in Trump’s golf resort in Doonbeg, Ireland.
The White House referred inquiries to the Trump Organization, which did not immediately respond to BuzzFeed News' requests for comment.
Curiously, the barcode displayed on Trump's fake magazine cover leads to karaoke software that lets users "DJ, VJ, and even sing karaoke."
The Post also pointed out that in 2010, a graphics design blogger from Lima, Peru, posted a Photoshop tutorial on how to make a Time cover, using President Obama as an example. In step five, designer Leonardo Leoamoretti includes a sample barcode. It's the same one from Trump's doctored image.
Employees at Trump's Turnberry club in Scotland told the Post that the cover was added to a wall after Trump purchased the course in 2014, but that it was taken down a few weeks ago.
The fake cover also went missing from Trump's Ireland resort, but a bartender found it in a manager's office. Club officials don't know why it was moved there.
Trump has often touted his consistent appearance on the cover of Time.
“I think I was on the cover of Time Magazine twice in my life and like six times in the last number of months. So you tell me, which is more important, real estate or politics, okay?” Trump said last July during a press conference. “I have six for politics and I have two for real estate or whatever they put me on for.”
While speaking at CIA headquarters in January, he falsely claimed, “I think we have the all-time record in the history of Time magazine." Former president Richard Nixon actually holds that title, appearing on the cover 55 times.
To date, Trump has appeared on 14 covers, only one of which came before he got into politics.
And this isn't the first time the president has been mixed up with a doctored copy of Time. Last month, one of his deputy national security advisers reportedly gave him a fake Time magazine cover that was supposed to be an example of mainstream media hypocrisy.
A White House official said it was a mistake.
Brianna Sacks is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in Los Angeles.
Contact Brianna Sacks at email@example.com.
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