Marlowe Dobbe

WASHINGTON, DC—In a shocking announcement on Tuesday, “President” Donald J. Trump announced that his entire 18-month tenure as commander-in-chief has been a prank for a new show he’s developing for NBC called Trump’d.

“John McCain was no war hero,” Trump said when asked what he thought of the recently deceased US Senator from Arizona. “I said it before—I like people who weren’t captured.”

As the press corps solemnly shook their heads, exhausted from almost two years of this chaotic presidency, the president smiled widely and proclaimed, “Just kidding—you’ve been Trump’d!!!”

CNN’s Jim Acosta was the first to break. “What?” he said, looking around at his colleagues. “Oh, no! You’re kidding! You got me! You really got me!!!”

“This nut,” said American Urban Radio Networks’ April Ryan, pointing at Trump. “So, separating kids from their parents at the border?”

“Trump’d!” yelled Trump gleefully. “I can’t believe you guys bought that! I told Melania there was no way people would let that thing go through, but there it went. CRAZY!”

After the reveal, reactions varied from Trump supporters across the country.

“I feel a little weird about the whole thing,” said Brad McCartle of Duluth, Minnesota, dressed in a replica Nazi SS uniform. “He kinda seemed like the real deal, and now I’m not sure where to put all this anger and frustration. According to our employee handbook, it’s not really appropriate to express at Applebee’s.”

Sarah Yasbek of Nyack, New York, believes the prank reveal is, itself, a prank.

“Jesus’ hand is guiding him in everything he does and he’ll continue to be our president,” she said, fondling her Bible. “I mean, it probably wasn’t guiding him when he paid off that porn star or when his hands were on either or both of her boobs, but Jesus can’t be everywhere at all times. Sometimes he needs to stop and get a Big Gulp or whatever.”

Senator Paul Ryan, apparently unclear that the prank meant Trump wasn’t actually president anymore, continued praising him.

“The president is hilarious,” Ryan said. “What would be even funnier is if he did something like, I don’t know, took Medicaid away from everyone. He should totally do that. As a prank, I mean. For a few years.”

Congress is currently scrambling to come up with a plan of succession, as there’s no legislative precedent for a prank presidency. Additionally, the federal government is attempting to reverse the prank appointments in the Department of Education, the Treasury, and, most critically, the EPA.

“I appointed a guy to the EPA who was famous for suing the EPA,” Trump said. “How could you NOT know this whole thing was a joke? It was nuts.”

When asked whether it was worth tearing at the very fabric of the country to create a compelling television show, NBC had no comment.

Trump’d will air on Tuesday nights at 10 pm after This Is Us.