Washington Post editor Bob Woodward strategically released to the newspaper excerpts from his upcoming book about the Trump administration that is bound to be topic of conversation and media coverage until the November 6 election.
Titled "Fear," the book offers anecdotes about members of the Trump administration who are supposedly thwarting the bosses intentions. The book asserts, for example, that White House staff went so far as to wisk papers off Trump’s desk to keep him from taking action. Reportedly taken from notes, diaries and government documents given to Woodward by administration officials, the book also is based on interviews with administration officials and "other principals," according to the Washington Post.
Chief of Staff John Kelly, a former general, supposedly called Trump an "idiot," according to the book, and said that the Chief Executive had gone "off the rails" and that "I don't know why any of us are here." The book says that Kelly frequently lost his temper, telling colleagues that Trump was "unhinged." Woodward write that Kelly said of Trump: "He’s an idiot. It’s pointless to try to convince him of anything. He’s gone off the rails. We’re in Crazytown. I don’t even know why any of us are here. This is the worst job I’ve ever had."
On Tuesday, Kelly denied the report: “The idea I ever called the President an idiot is not true,” saying in a statement, “He always knows where I stand, and he and I both know this story is total BS.”
John Kelly's full statement below:
"The idea I ever called the President an idiot is not true. As I stated back in May and still firmly stand behind: "I spend more time with the President than anyone else, and we have an incredibly candid and strong relationship. He always knows where I stand, and he and I both know this story is total BS. I'm committed to the President, his agenda, and our country. This is another pathetic attempt to smear people close to President Trump and distract from the administration's many successes."
The White House also blasted the book and called it "nothing more than fabricated stories."
The full White House statement:
"This book is nothing more than fabricated stories, many by former disgruntled employees, told to make the President look bad. While it is not always pretty, and rare that the press actually covers it, President Trump has broken through the bureaucratic process to deliver unprecedented successes for the American people."
"Sometimes it is unconventional, but he always gets results. Democrats and their allies in the media understand the President's policies are working and with success like this, no one can beat him in 2020 – not even close."
Woodward wrote that there is "an administrative coup d’etat" and a "nervous breakdown" of the executive branch.
President Trump, according to the book, said of Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross: “I don’t trust you. I don’t want you doing any more negotiations. … You’re past your prime.”