Cheriss May/Zuma

Fight disinformation: Sign up for the free Mother Jones Daily newsletter and follow the news that matters.

If you ever had the great misfortune of visiting Melania Trump’s official website, you would know that the former first lady is very into NFTs now. What exactly an NFT is is not clear. But Melania’s first entry into the boom, as typical of her and as usual for crypto, is certainly tacky as hell. Who on earth would want to own this thing?

Apparently no one. Bloomberg reports that the winning bid on the auction for Melania’s NFT collection, which received just five bids last month, came from the same digital wallet belonging to the entity that created the auction. In other words, it seems like Melania or someone tied to the former first lady bought the NFTs themselves. From Bloomberg:

Transactions reviewed by Bloomberg News show that on Jan. 23, the digital wallet listed as the creator of Trump’s NFT transferred 372,657 USDC, a stablecoin pegged to the U.S. dollar, to a second wallet that later sent 1,800 SOL to a third address. That third one is listed as the winner of the auction on Trump’s website.

On Jan. 27, the original wallet sent 1,800 SOL back to the second wallet address, according to blockchain transactions. The record of transactions was earlier reported by Vice.

In response to the report, Melania’s office said that the NFTs were purchased on behalf of a third party. But that claim, already dubious, was met with further skepticism on Thursday after Melania announced a new line of NFTs titled the POTUS NFT Collection.

So, was this a wash-sale stunt? Or was Melania just sad that no one wanted what she was selling? Did she actually get a third-party buyer? Judging from the Trump family’s long record of grift and fraudulent charity-giving, it’s hard to imagine it’s not whatever of these options is the stupidest.

FACT:

Mother Jones was founded as a nonprofit in 1976 because we knew corporations and billionaires wouldn't fund the type of hard-hitting journalism we set out to do.

Today, reader support makes up about two-thirds of our budget, allows us to dig deep on stories that matter, and lets us keep our reporting free for everyone. If you value what you get from Mother Jones, please join us with a tax-deductible donation today so we can keep on doing the type of journalism 2022 demands.

payment methods

FACT:

Mother Jones was founded as a nonprofit in 1976 because we knew corporations and billionaires wouldn't fund the type of hard-hitting journalism we set out to do.

Today, reader support makes up about two-thirds of our budget, allows us to dig deep on stories that matter, and lets us keep our reporting free for everyone. If you value what you get from Mother Jones, please join us with a tax-deductible donation today so we can keep on doing the type of journalism 2022 demands.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate