- On Tuesday, Pulitzer Prize-winning Washington Post reporters Philip Rucker and Carol Leonnig published a new book on the Trump Administration.
- The book tells never-before-heard stories about the Trump White House, and confirms anecdotes that were detailed in other books and reporting.
- “A Very Stable Genius: Donald J. Trump’s Testing of America” is on sale now.
- Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
A new book by Washington Post reporters Philip Rucker and Carol Leonnig is shedding new light on the White House, and what appears to be a very chaotic administration.
According to publisher Penguin Random House, the book draws on “scores of exclusive new interviews with some of the most senior members of the Trump administration and other firsthand witnesses.”
These sources tell the story of a seemingly unhinged president, who regularly demeans and degrades his staff, who lacks fundamental knowledge necessary for the job, and who isn’t being properly protected.
Trump responded to the book’s impending release with a tweet on Monday, calling Rucker and Leonnig “two stone cold losers from Amazon [Washington Post].”
“Almost every story is a made up lie, just like corrupt pol Shifty Schiff, who fraudulently made up my call with Ukraine. Fiction!” he wrote.
Here are some of the most interesting anecdotes from the book:
- House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s daughter gave Trump a bottle of water to drink during a visit to the White House in March 2017 that wasn’t tested by his security team. Alexandra Pelosi was filming a documentary at the White House when the president appeared and asked for some water. Alexandra gave him a bottle from her purse, since no one else was around to assist the president. But looking back, she told Rucker and Leonnig the situation seemed like a serious lapse in the president’s security. “I’ve been to the White House. There are always protocols. Here there were no rules, no protocol,” she said, according to the book. “There’s so much wrong with the whole thing. I’m thinking, Isn’t there someone who’s supposed to guard what he’s eating and drinking?”
- Trump called the members of his national security team “losers” and “a bunch of dopes and babies” when they tried to school him on foreign policy during a July 2017 meeting. Former Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, former National Economic Council Director Gary Cohn, and former Defence Secretary Jim Mattis called the meeting after growing concerned with Trump’s apparent lack of knowledge when it came to international relations, according to the book. But when they started their slideshow presentation, they were met with hostility from the president who started demanding to know why the US wasn’t getting paid for sending troops to Europe and South Korea, and berating the military leaders for past failures in Afghanistan. “You’re all losers. You don’t know how to win anymore,” Trump reportedly said. “I wouldn’t go to war with you people. You’re a bunch of dopes and babies.”
- Trump is also said to have had a meltdown over bathroom tile used in the renovation of The Plaza hotel in the 1980s, even though he had picked it out. Barbara Res, a former vice president of the Trump Organisation, said Trump blamed her when he saw the green marble in person after it was installed, according to the book. “You’re no f—— good!,” Trump said, according to Res’ recollection. “You’re making me look bad! This is cheap s—! Who told you to buy this?” Res explained that she had given Trump three options for the bathroom tile and this was the option he picked, which also happened to be the cheapest variety. “I just stood there and said, ‘Donald, you approved it,'” Res recalled she said at the time. “I thought he might explode. He was that angry.”
- Trump reportedly asked his then-Chief of Staff John Kelly “what’s this all about?” when they took a private tour of the USS Arizona Memorial in November 2017. Rucker and Leonnig wrote that although Trump “heard the phrase ‘Pearl Harbour’ and appeared to understand that he was visiting the scene of a historic battle… he did not seem to know much else.” The USS Arizona was a US battleship sunk in the December 1941 Japanese attack on the Honolulu, Hawaii, military base, which propelled the US to enter World War II. More than 1,000 servicemen on the boat were killed and most of the bodies could not be recovered from the submerged ship.
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