Whether or not the now infamous tape recording of Donald Trump using the N-word ever emerges no longer really matters, except insofar as it may prove yet again that he is a liar. For his core supporters it probably won't matter a jot if he used the word - indeed, his stock may rise even further with them, who probably use the word all the time. As for his opponents, they probably have no doubt that he used it, for the story is after all entirely believable. That Trump had and still nurtures a hatred for a prominent black man, Barack Obama may help explain his problem. Trump, from the days of his 'birther' campaigning never really believed that Obama was legitimate. Indeed, if Obama was actually born in Kenya that would mean he was not only black but alien. Would Trump have clinged to his accusations if Obama had been white? Yes, Trump says unpleasant things about white men and women, but his campaign against Obama was (and remains) visceral, and has followed him into the White House where he seeks to undo or undermine everything Obama did. Indeed, Trump would stand all that he believed in on its head if it gave him the opportunity to have a crack at Obama. Why else, for example would this arch-climate change denier sign (and presumably help pay for) a full page advertisement in the New York Times, at the time of the 2009 Copenhagen climate change summit calling on Obama to take tough action on behalf of the planet's future? One can be certain he was willing the president to fail (which, by the way, he more or less did).
A bit of casual racism for Trump is probably just another dose of 'locker room' talk. What's worrying is that he acts on it. But in defence of Trump his press secretary pointed to 700,000 African-Americans who since his election have now found work. This of course is balderdash. Many of the economic drivers would have been in place before his election, but needed time to work through. All that could be said is that if his policies benefit the American economy, they may also benefit black Americans. A big if and a big may, and colour blind.