Speaking to CNN, former Forbes reporter Jonathan Greenberg said that Trump "figured out what he had to do in order to deceive me and get onto that [Forbes 400 Richest] list."
In 1984, Trump's net worth was recorded at 400 million dollars on the Forbes 400 list even though his actual net worth as a real estate developer at the time was less than five million dollars, according to Greenberg.
"And he did it very well. He maintained that persona of just sort of talking about his assets without any sense of debt and lying about it," Greenberg added referring to Trump posing as "John Barron," a purported Trump Organization executive, during their phone talk.
In an op-ed for The Washington Post, Greenberg wrote that Trump was "telling a lie so cosmic that people believed that some kernel of it had to be real."
"The tactic landed him a place on the Forbes list he hadn't earned and led to future accolades, press coverage and deals. It eventually paved a path toward the presidency," Greenberg pointed out.
Twitter users were quick to respond to the news with a wave of sarcastic remarks, blaming "crazy" Trump for repeatedly telling lies.
John Barron is a terrific guy. He's been with the organization for years. pic.twitter.com/EJ8zCeDFTe— Donald J. Drumpf (@RealDonalDrumpf) 21 апреля 2018 г.
It shows what a fraud he is, but it also shows what he really doesn’t want known: his wealth stems not from genius but from Fred Trump. No banks would have lent him all that money at 27 without the old man’s guarantees and NYC wouldn’t have given the tax abatement without Fred.— Hudson Henley (@hudsonhenley) 20 апреля 2018 г.
Donald Trump used an alias (John Barron) and lied to get on the Forbes 400 list.— Tommy Campbell (@MrTommyCampbell) 20 апреля 2018 г.
His history of manipulation and exaggerating his wealth is decades long.
Will we ever see this creepy con artist’s taxes?!
President John Barron, also known as David Dennison & Donald Trump, lied about his wealth to get on the Forbes 400 list.— dylan (@dylanmsmitty) 20 апреля 2018 г.
Maybe there’s a reason he won’t release his tax returns?
Good thing it’s not his birth certificate in question, bc then Republicans would want to see it.
Such a sad man. I almost feel sorry for him. Almost.— Amy Ernano (@AmyErnano) 21 апреля 2018 г.
We need to ask ourselves how it is that #Trump could not only get away with lies all these years, but actually succeeded in lying his way to the top. How can this happen?— Luanna Meyer (@LuBonLez) 21 апреля 2018 г.
Hmm, is it time to bring in an exorcist? pic.twitter.com/Qd3UwJA1I0— Edmund Blackadder (@baldrick531) 21 апреля 2018 г.
Yeah, well no surprise; he's pretending to be a president too.— pover (@graeber_1) 21 апреля 2018 г.
Lol trump lied to a Forbes reporter and posed as his own spokesperson to get on the list. Fake time covers all over his properties. This man doesn’t have a genuine cell in his body. Crazy.— Cris Rivera (@Lastplace_champ) 20 апреля 2018 г.
Former reporter for Forbes claims that Trump lied to him decades ago about his net worth to snatch a spot on the Forbes 400 Richest list.— Molly 🌊 (@Molly3186) 20 апреля 2018 г.
He lied about his height too so he wasn't labeled as obese.
I don't believe for a second that Trump's a billionaire.#DonTheCon