I know, I know—it’s Friday, you want to kick back and take it easy; you don’t want to think about Trump staffers’ genitals. But trust me on this one: Today’s Politico Magazine piece about the woes of being a young Trump staffer in Washington, DC is worth it. Take my hand, and join me in Hell. Drink full and descend:
One beleaguered 31-year-old female administration official described at length her “very, very frequent” scraps with her matches on dating apps. “You do the small talk thing, and you have a very good conversation, and then they might say, ‘You didn’t vote for Trump, right?’” she says. “As soon as I say, ‘Of course I did,’ it just devolves into all-caps ‘HOW COULD YOU BE SUCH A RACIST AND A BIGOT?’ And ‘You’re going to take away your own birth control.’”
In one recent star-crossed exchange, the official told a match she worked for the federal government. When he pushed, she revealed she was in the administration. He asked her, “Do you rip babies from their mothers and then send them to Mexico?”
Evasive answers will get you only so far, though, since many dating apps provide enough information for inquisitive users to sleuth out their matches’ identities. “I literally got the other day, ‘Thanks but no thanks. Just Googled you and it said you were a mouthpiece for the Trump administration. Go fuck yourself,’” says the official. It’s all enough to drive her and some of her colleagues away from at least some of the apps. “I’m no longer on Bumble,” she says.
Young staffers have had to develop a keen sense of just when to have “The Talk” with romantic partners. “I’ve still been able to hook up with women,” says a male former White House staffer. “But I know that I need to be careful about broaching the Trump stuff. I just know that going in, I need to be able to get it out at the right time and not get it out too early to the point where it’s like, ‘Hey, I worked for Trump, you should stop talking to me,’ but late enough in that eventually they know that there is this information floating out there that I worked for this guy and hopefully you have now seen that I’m not a horrible person and we can go further with this.”
The rest of the article details the non-dating aspects of young Trump staffers’ social lives in DC, including which neighborhoods they nest in and which bars they like. According to the article, Trump staffers have gravitated to living in the Waterfront area, an extremely sterile, mostly newly-developed area, which is interestingly kind of reminiscent of National Harbor, where CPAC is held. It’s full of Nice Restaurants and Nice Coffee Shops and all the other completely soulless but superficially pleasant stuff that characterizes so much of gentrified Washington—and it’s “devoid of true locals,” the Politico notes.
According to one administration staffer the magazine interviewed, Rebellion, “a Southern-themed establishment” near the U Street area (the apotheosis of DC gentrification, where horrible condo buildings and new yoga studios pop up every few months), is “one of the few closet Trump bars” in town. It also happens to be the place where the anti-Initiative 77 campaign, which sought to defeat a minimum wage increase for servers, held its deeply embarrassing pop-up bar intended to demonstrate how awful restaurants would be if servers were paid a living wage.
This isn’t the first time the Trump contingent in DC has complained of not being able to visit Pound Town: In March, Washingtonian published a piece detailing how difficult it is to date as a Trump supporter in This Town, featuring similar anecdotes about un-matching on Bumble and dates fleeing in horror.
But I would advise Trump staffers not to fret about it so much. There are other options available.