UPDATE: Defense Secretary James Mattis has responded to Woodward's new book, claiming he did not utter the words credited to him by the author.
Another book, another round of sensational claims about the Trump White House. In the same vein as Michael Wolff’s Fire and Fury and Omarosa Manigault-Newman's scathing reports about her own experience in the Trump administration, Bob Woodward's Fear: Trump in the White House is full of unflattering descriptions of Trump and his associates.
- Former White House lawyer John Dowd called Trump an "f***ing liar" and told he not to testify with special counsel Robert Mueller because he'd end up in an "orange jumpsuit"
- Trump called Attorney General Jeff Sessions "mentally retarded" and a "traitor"
- Chief of Staff John Kelly suggested Trump is not mental fit, declaring during one meeting, “We’re in Crazytown”
- Defense Secretary James Mattis told associates that the president acted like "a fifth- or sixth-grader”
- Gary Cohn, former director of the National Economic Council, removed papers from Trump’s desk to prevent their signature
Some of the characters quoted in the book are already rebuffing some of the above claims. Dowd, for instance, insists he was misquoted. (graphic language)
Dowd denied the accuracy of Woodward's reporting in single-word emails to the Washington Examiner.
Asked if he disputed the accuracy of quotes attributed to him in CNN's report, Dowd replied "yes."
Dowd wrote "no" when asked if he ever described Trump as a "fucking liar," warned Trump he risked an "orange jump suit," or described Trump's interview prep to Mueller, as quoted by CNN.
The Washington Post, where Woodward is an associate editor, reports that Woodward reached out to Trump for an interview while he was writing the book, but did not hear back until after the manuscript had been completed. Trump claimed that no one had told him about the interview request. The WaPo has the transcript of the phone call.
"It’s really too bad, because nobody told me about it, and I would’ve loved to have spoken to you," Trump reportedly told the journalist. "You know I’m very open to you. I think you’ve always been fair. We’ll see what happens."
Woodward insisted on the call that he spoke with a few White House officials, including Deputy Press Secretary Raj Shah and advisor Kellyanne Conway, to which Trump suggested they were "afraid" to come and talk to him about it.
On CNN Tuesday, Woodward's old journalistic partner at WaPo, Carl Bernstein, claimed the Trump presidency is a "national emergency" and Americans must do something about it.
Fear: Trump in the White House comes out on September 11.