Trump blew up at a top general over how to handle George Floyd protests, yelling, ‘You can’t f—ing talk to me like that!’ new book says

Donald Trump yell
Former President Donald Trump. David Goldman/AP Images
  • Trump got into a shouting match with Gen. Milley over racial-injustice protests, a new book said.
  • An excerpt of a new book on Trump described an expletive-ridden row between the two.
  • Trump denied that the conversation ever took place, calling it “fake news.”
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

A new book said former President Donald Trump got into an explosive confrontation with Gen. Mark Milley over how to handle racial-injustice protests last summer, Axios reported.

An excerpt of a forthcoming book by the Wall Street Journal reporter Michael Bender, seen by Axios, described an expletive-filled yelling match between Trump and Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

At this time, Trump had been mulling over invoking the Insurrection Act and sending federal troops to quell the protests, some of which were turning deadly.

Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark Milley
Gen. Mark Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

The proposition received considerable pushback from top military leaders at the time. This even reached the Situation Room, Bender wrote in the forthcoming “Frankly We Did Win This Election: The Inside Story of How Trump Lost.”

Bender said Trump exaggerated how violent the protests were, and that he had put Milley “in charge” of responding, the excerpt said.

When Milley confronted him about this, Trump yelled, “I said you’re in f—ing charge!” Bender wrote.

Milley yelled back that he wasn’t in charge, Bender continued. Trump is described as shooting back, “You can’t f—ing talk to me like that!”

Milley then appealed to others in the room, asking them to explain to the president about his legal responsibilities, Bender wrote.

At this point, Attorney General Bill Barr told Trump, “He’s right, Mr. President,” the excerpt said.

The Trump Organization did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment. Trump denied to Axios that the conversation had taken place, saying it’s “totally fake news.”

“It never ever happened,” Trump told the outlet. “I’m not a fan of Gen. Milley, but I never had an argument with him and the whole thing is false. He never talked back to me. Michael Bender never asked me about it and it’s totally fake news.”

But Bender told Axios that the exchange “was confirmed by multiple senior administration officials during the course of hundreds of hours of interviews with dozens of top Trump World aides for this book.”

Bender added that Trump did not reply to his fact-checking email.

In his book, Bender wrote of instances where Milley opposed Trump’s plans for reacting to the protests. The book said that more than once, Trump called for protesters to be shot and said US troops should “crack their skulls.”