Kevin McCarthy begged Trump to call Biden on the eve of his inauguration but Trump refused: book

DJT and Kevin McCarthy
WASHINGTON, DC – APRIL 24: House Minority Leader Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) and U.S. President Donald Trump attend a signing ceremony for H.R. 266, the Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act, in the Oval Office of the White House on April 24, 2020 in Washington, DC. The bill includes an additional $US321 ($AU440) billion for the Paycheck Protection Programs forgivable loans to cover payroll and other costs for small businesses. Hospitals and other health care providers will receive $US75 ($AU103) billion and another $US25 ($AU34) billion is allocated for COVID-19 testing. Photo by Anna Moneymaker/The New York Times/POOL/Getty Images
  • Kevin McCarthy begged Trump to call Biden before his inauguration to solidify the transfer of power, a new book says.
  • “Do it for me,” McCarthy reportedly told Trump. “You’ve got to call him. Call Joe Biden.”
  • But Trump refused, according to Bob Woodward and Robert Costa’s book, “Peril.”
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Republican Rep. Kevin McCarthy begged President Donald Trump to call incoming President Joe Biden on the eve of his inauguration, but Trump repeatedly rebuffed him. That’s according to Bob Woodward and Robert Costa’s “Peril,” an early copy of which was obtained by Insider.

The conversation took place on the phone at around 10 p.m. on January 19, the book said, and Trump told McCarthy he’d just finished writing a personal letter to Biden as part of a longrunning tradition in which outgoing presidents leave letters for their successor.

“I just finished the letter,” Trump told McCarthy, according to the book. The House GOP leader was glad to hear that after weeks of urging, Trump had finally taken his advice.

The California Republican wanted Trump to go a step further to solidify the transfer of power to Biden, especially since Trump wasn’t going to attend the inauguration, eschewing years of norms and leaving a lasting fracture in the long American tradition of peaceful transitions between administrations.

“I don’t know what happened to you in the last two months,” McCarthy told Trump on the phone, per the book. “You’re not the same as you were for the last four years.”

He then begged that the president call Biden. “Do it for me,” he told Trump. “You’ve got to call him. Call Joe Biden.”

Trump said no. After McCarthy pushed him a couple more times, Trump changed the subject, according to the book.

It was par for the course for Trump, who had refused to acknowledge Biden’s victory in the 2020 election and continues insisting that he was the rightful winner and that the race was unfairly stolen from him.

He brushed off any suggestions that he concede to Biden in the days and weeks after the election. At one point in November, after the race had been called for Biden, Trump told his close confidant and communications director Hope Hicks, “It’s not who I am to give up. It’s not in me to do that,” the book said.

She appealed to Trump to consider the political capital he could accumulate and urged him not to “squander it,” the book said. But Trump was adamant, saying, “I don’t care about my legacy. My legacy doesn’t matter. If I lose, that will be my legacy.”

McCarthy publicly blamed Trump for the Capitol siege. But soon after, he softened his tone and walked back some of his criticism.

The two men even met at Mar-a-Lago after Trump left office, but Trump was reportedly still upset McCarthy had blamed him for the riot.

“This guy called me every single day, pretended to be my best friend, and then, he fucked me,” Trump told friends at a dinner in February, according to the book. “He’s not a good guy.”