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Jacob Heilbrunn Politics US Politics

What does Omarosa reveal in her new book?

Sarah Huckabee Sanders depicted her as the classic aggrieved employee who is thirsting for revenge against her old boss.

August 10, 2018

8:24 PM

10 August 2018

8:24 PM

If there is one that American industry President Trump is helping to revive again, it’s book publishing. The latest author to profit from this trend is Omarosa Manigault-Newman whose Unhinged, a memoir of her brief time in the White House, will soon appear. Her account, if the advance excerpts are anything to go by, is not the usual morose lamentation of a true believer who complains that the boss failed to adhere to the policies he enunciated during the campaign. She doesn’t appear to have any ideological concerns about Trump.

Instead, she has launched a purely personal attack on Trump. Omarosa’s account has all the fury of a betrayed lover. She depicts Trump as a narcissistic racist whose use of what the mainstream media carefully refers to as the “N-word,” has been captured on tape. Her fusillade of allegations is attracting the fire and fury of an administration whose offer of $15,000 a month in hush money she says she spurned.

Today, press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders depicted her as the classic aggrieved employee who is thirsting for revenge against her old boss. According to Sanders, Omarosa should have written a saccharine account lauding Trump’s political acumen. Alas, “Instead of telling the truth about all the good President Trump and his administration are doing to make America safe and prosperous, this book is riddled with lies and false accusations. It’s sad that a disgruntled former White House employee is trying to profit off these false attacks, and even worse that the media would now give her a platform, after not taking her seriously when she had only positive things to say about the president during her time in the administration.”

Indignation at Omarosa is also emerging from a more surprising corner. George Conway, the husband of Trump aide Kellyanne, lawyer and half Filipino, regularly issues tweets dissenting from the administration’s policies. But he has taken umbrage at Omarosa’s contention that Trump referred to him as “Goo-goo” and “Flip.” No way, says Conway. He issued a tweet defending Trump: “”The allegation is not credible, and indeed is ridiculous, particularly in light of the timing of her departure from the White House—December 12, 2017. It’s absurd all around.” Republican pollster Frank Luntz says much the same in a tweet: “I’m in @Omarosa’s book on page 149. She claims to have heard from someone who heard from me that I heard Trump use the N-word. Not only is this flat-out false (I’ve never heard such a thing), but Omarosa didn’t even make an effort to call or email me to verify. Very shoddy work.” But Washington Post reporter Josh Dawsey tweets, “Some of Omarosa’s claims are entirely unverifiable. But having listened to several of the recordings she made, they match quotations in the book.”

For her part, Omarosa claims to be taking the high ground, a patriot sounding the alarm about a president who is careening out of control. She draws a sharp distinction between the Trump she knew early on and the monster that later emerged. “The Donald Trump of 2003 was as smart and as shrewd as he claimed to be,” she writes. Now a steady diet of diet cokes has rendered him all but mentally incapacitated. But even a cursory look at Trump’s career reveals that he hasn’t gone bonkers. He always was.

To add insult to injury, Omarosa offers a little homily about how to handle Trump.  “All we need to remember,” she writes, “is that Trump loves the hate. He thrives on criticism and insults. He delights in chaos and confusion. Taking to Twitter to call him names only fuels him and riles his base. To disarm him, starve his ego; don’t feed into it.” Be Best, in other words. It’s not advice that she seems to be following in writing and promoting her book. Trump has brought out the worst in her.


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