- Getty/Drew Angerer
- Peter Thiel was the only major Silicon Valley mogul to publicly back Donald Trump’s presidential campaign.
- Trump showered Thiel with praise but failed to return his calls after he was elected president, according to Michael Wolff’s “Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House.”
Peter Thiel is one of the most successful venture capitalists in Silicon Valley. He was also one of the few technology moguls to publicly support President Trump during his campaign.
He even spoke at the Republican Convention where Trump was nominated.
But apparently Trump later blew him off, according to Michael Wolff’s “Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House.” To make matters worse, it happened after Trump reportedly told Thiel they’d be “friends for life.”
Here’s the revelation from Wolff’s book:
“PayPal cofounder and Facebook board member Peter Thiel-really the only significant Silicon Valley voice to support Trump-was warned by another billionaire and longtime Trump friend that Trump would, in an explosion of flattery, offer Thiel his undying friendship. Everybody says you’re great, you and I are going to have an amazing working relationship, anything you want, call me and we’ll get it done! Thiel was advised not to take Trump’s offer too seriously. But Thiel, who gave a speech supporting Trump at the Republican Convention in Cleveland, reported back that, even having been forewarned, he absolutely was certain of Trump’s sincerity when he said they’d be friends for life-only never to basically hear from him again or have his calls returned.”
Ouch. Thiel made a fortune as a co-founder of PayPal and as an early investor in Facebook. He’s used to having his phone calls returned.
Thiel seemed optimistic about a Trump presidency shortly after Trump was elected, congratulating him in a statement and calling for “all hands on deck.” But according to “Fire and Fury,” as Trump assumed power, he suddenly had several billionaires vying for his attention, and Thiel had to suffer “social lapses” by Trump.
Still, that didn’t stop Thiel from assembling a star-studded guest list for Trump at a technology summit at Trump Tower in December 2016, one month after he was elected. Thiel was officially on Trump’s transition team, acting as an adviser on technology issues and staffing. Vanity Fair reported in September that the billionaire may be in line for a top intelligence advisory post.
But recently, several reports have quoted Thiel saying privately that the Trump administration is “incompetent” and may end in disaster.
Ultimately, it still looks like Thiel and Trump are friendly. There hasn’t been a public Trump-Thiel divorce yet, but according to Wolff’s account, it might not be the solid working partnership many believe it to be.