Ten years ago, Donald Trump had a pretty open mind about gay marriage.
“If two people dig each other, they dig each other,” he wrote about the marriage of Elton John and longtime partner David Furnish. “I’m very happy for them.”
The December 2005 comment was posted on the “Trump Blog” that he maintained on the Trump University website, a kind of journal of Trump’s thoughts on everything from why he chose various contestants for Celebrity Apprentice to why women struggle in the workplace:
“I think women have a tough situation in the workplace because of the sexual undertones,” Trump wrote in October 2005. “The business environment is so cutthroat that men and women learn to use whatever they can to get ahead, including their sexuality. Yet, when women do this, the perception of them changes. That’s why women have to work harder to overcome obstacles.”
The blog is no longer live on the Internet, some of of blog posts are still viewable through the Internet Archive, a non-profit site that collects website pages.
“Mr. Trump is not a politician. He has been very clear that his views, like Ronald Reagan’s, have evolved over the years,” said spokeswoman Hope Hicks.
Some of the opinions Trump expressed on the blog run counter to Republican orthodoxy and to views he now espouses on the campaign trail.
For instance, on gay marriage, in June 2015 he told CNN, “I’m for traditional marriage.”
In February 2009, he praised President Obama’s efforts to cap the bonuses of Wall Street executives from companies that were being bailed out by the government, in a post titled “Obama is Absolutely Right.”
“The concept of bailouts is a two-edged sword. If they didn’t do the bailout, we would be in depression No. 2, and maybe it would be just as big as depression No. 1, so they really had to do something. We don’t really know if it’s going to work for quite some time. If it’s really wrong — and it could be wrong — we’re going to really have a mess in two years.”
“We are in a situation that is trial and error. We’ve never dealt with this before. But I think Obama is doing the right thing and all of us must remain alert to what is happening.”
In another post the same month, discussing his appearance on Neal Cavuto’s television show, Trump seemed to break from the broad Republican opposition to President Obama’s $800 billion stimulus package than most Republicans at the time.
“Neal asked me about Obama’s stimulus plan, and I said that something had to be done, but that there are no guarantees. We are in unmapped territory these days. We haven’t encountered this kind of situation before, and it is complex. We can only hope for the best.”
In a 2005 post, Trump defended “outsourcing,” the practice of companies moving production overseas that he has railed against as a presidential candidate.
In an August 2005 post titled “Outsourcing Creates Jobs in the Long Run,” Trump wrote:
“We hear terrible things about outsourcing jobs — how sending work outside of our companies is contributing to the demise of American businesses. But in this instance I have to take the unpopular stance that it is not always a terrible thing.”
Trump noted a study “that showed how global outsourcing actually creates more jobs and increases wages, at least for IT workers”:
“The study found that outsourcing helped companies be more competitive and more productive. That means they make more money, which means they funnel more into the economy, thereby, creating more jobs.”
“I know that doesn’t make it any easier for people whose jobs have been outsourced overseas, but if a company’s only means of survival is by farming jobs outside its walls, then sometimes it’s a necessary step. The other option might be to close its doors for good.”
In two blog posts at the end of 2008, he praised both President-elect Obama and Hillary Clinton. Recounting his appearance on a New York radio program, Trump wrote that he had said:
“Hillary is smart, tough and a very nice person, and so is her husband. Bill Clinton was a great President. They are fine people. Hillary was roughed up by the media, and it was a tough campaign for her, but she’s a great trouper. Her history is far from being over.”
Trump also said he had high hopes for Obama’s presidency:
“Barack will need to be a great president, because we’re in serious trouble as a country. It hasn’t been this way since 1929. So he doesn’t have much choice — he will simply have to be great, which he has a very good chance of being. I saw him speak in Berlin, and what he has done is amazing. The fact that he accomplished what he has in one year is truly phenomenal.”
“After 9/11, this country had a lot of compassion from countries around the world. Within a short amount of time, we were hated. How did that happen? We had no dialog with other countries because they just plain hated us. I think we know who is responsible for that. What’s different today is that we have a new chance, a new beginning. The world is excited about Barack Obama and the new United States. Let’s keep it that way!”
The Trump Blog also included posts from other authors, some of which also seem far from Trump’s current views. In one 2010 post, real estate agent Tina Merritt explained how undocumented immigrants could buy homes in the U.S. “It is not illegal to own real estate in the U.S. even if one is in the country illegally,” she wrote. “If getting a mortgage is not an option, one can always pay cash.”
The blog also served as way to promote Trump’s various brands and business ventures, many of which — like the university itself — are gone. In 2006, Trump wrote about his launch of a new travel website called “GoTrump.com”
“I recently put my name on a new travel site, GoTrump.com. It has everything from the ultimate in luxury travel to the absolute best deals on everything from hotels to airfare.”
“It’s a great site, check it out. It has to be, or I wouldn’t have put my name on it.”
“I’ve worked hard to make sure the Trump name is found only on buildings of the highest caliber and products of the finest quality. I won’t even consider giving my approval to anything unless I know it’s the top of the line because when people see or hear ‘Trump,’ they expect the best. That’s just basic marketing and good business.”
The travel site appears to have shut down a year later.