Donald Trump is always quick to unleash on his enemies, especially if those enemies happen to question his narcissistic self-image. Like a petulant child, he relishes attacking others, slandering them rather then rebutting their claims.
As is our new national tradition, President Trump is spending his Saturday golfing and tweeting:
So much Fake News is being reported. They don’t even try to get it right, or correct it when they are wrong. They promote the Fake Book of a mentally deranged author, who knowingly writes false information. The Mainstream Media is crazed that WE won the election!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 13, 2018
Once you look past the distracting random capitalization, you’ll see that Trump is once again attacking the media. This is specifically aimed at Michael Wolff, author of bestselling exposé Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House.
This book is chock-full of bombshells, describing the chaotic and surreal atmosphere of the White House during the first year of the Trump presidency.
Trump doggedly insists the book is categorically false; he wants you to know that he is telling the truth!
Michael Wolff is a total loser who made up stories in order to sell this really boring and untruthful book. He used Sloppy Steve Bannon, who cried when he got fired and begged for his job. Now Sloppy Steve has been dumped like a dog by almost everyone. Too bad! https://t.co/mEeUhk5ZV9
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 6, 2018
Among the assertions in the book:
The Trump Organization is eyeballs deep in money-laundering schemes:
“This is all about money laundering. Mueller chose [senior prosecutor Andrew] Weissmann first and he is a money-laundering guy. Their path to fucking Trump goes right through Paul Manafort, Don Jr and Jared Kushner. … It’s as plain as a hair on your face.” (Steve Bannon quote)
The Trump Campaign likely committed treason:
“The three senior guys in the campaign thought it was a good idea to meet with a foreign government inside Trump Tower in the conference room on the 25th floor — with no lawyers. They didn’t have any lawyers. Even if you thought that this was not treasonous, or unpatriotic, or bad shit, and I happen to think it’s all of that, you should have called the FBI immediately.” (Steve Bannon quote)
(These two quotes by Steve Bannon have not been denied by the former W.H. Chief Strategist and Trump Campaign CEO.)
The staff surrounding Trump thinks he’s not very smart:
“For Steve Mnuchin and Reince Priebus, he was an “idiot.” For Gary Cohn, he was “dumb as shit.” For H.R. McMaster he was a “dope.” The list went on.”
He does not understand the basics of the U.S. Constitution:
“Early in the campaign, Sam Nunberg was sent to explain the Constitution to the candidate. ‘I got as far as the Fourth Amendment,” Nunberg recalled, “before his finger is pulling down on his lip and his eyes are rolling back in his head.'”
Obstruction of justice is de rigueur:
“Mark Corallo was instructed not to speak to the press, indeed not to even answer his phone. Later that week, Corallo, seeing no good outcome-and privately confiding that he believed the meeting on Air Force One represented a likely obstruction of justice-quit. (The Jarvanka side would put it out that Corallo was fired.)”
Trump and Co. are understandably running scared. If the revelations in Fire and Fury are indeed true, most senior members of the administration as well as Trump himself should be under intense federal investigation.
So the question we are left with is: should we believe Trump’s denials?
I authorized Zero access to White House (actually turned him down many times) for author of phony book! I never spoke to him for book. Full of lies, misrepresentations and sources that don’t exist. Look at this guy’s past and watch what happens to him and Sloppy Steve!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 5, 2018
Trump says Wolff had “Zero access”, but that’s easily refuted by White House reporter Zeke Miller:
FWIW: The several times I saw Wolff at the White House, he was cleared-in with a blue 'appointment" badge allowing West Wing access, rather than a gray "press" badge.
— Zeke Miller (@ZekeJMiller) January 3, 2018
This indicates that he was indeed given access, likely by Steve Bannon.
Axios reports that there is physical evidence backing up the book’s claims, in the form of tapes:
Michael Wolff has tapes to back up quotes in his incendiary book — dozens of hours of them. Among the sources he taped, I’m told, are Steve Bannon and former White House deputy chief of staff Katie Walsh.
Even Sarah Huckabee Sanders was forced to admit that, contrary to the White House’s prior statements, Wolff did indeed have access to Trump (from The Washington Post):
White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Trump spoke to Wolff only once for about “five to seven minutes,” and not specifically about the book. But the author said on “Today” that he had a full interview with the president.
Verdict: Trump’s lying once more.
Featured image: Getty/NurPhoto