Fireworks ensued on Friday between President Trump and former advisor, Steve Bannon. Early excerpts of Michael Wolff’s new book Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House prompted the tensions.
In his book, Wolff claims that Bannon gave him extensive interviews in which he fingered Donald Trump Jr. in problematic meetings with a Russian lawyer and called the President’s daughter “dumb as a brick.”
On the Sunday morning circuit Wolf went so far as suggesting the possibility of invoking the 25th Amendment. The 25th allows the President’s cabinet an option to vote to remove the President from office due to being unable to perform his duties. Constitutional experts on all side agree the amendment exists for cases in which a president is incapacitated, such as in a comma.
But Wolff insisted that the 25th Amendment is a distinct possibility according to unnamed sources “inside” the White House. He said, “It is not an exaggeration or unreasonable to say …The 25th amendment concept is alive every day in the White House.
Wolff narrative relies heavily on on-the-record interviews with Bannon. In one such interview, Bannon referred to a 2016 meeting between a Russian lawyer and Donald Trump Jr. and a Russia lawyer at Trump Tower as “treasonous” and inferred that it was highly likely that Trump Jr. told the President about the meeting.
President Trump’s top policy adviser, Stephen Miller, blasted his former White House colleague calling Bannon an angry, vindictive person [whose] “grotesque comments are so out of touch with reality.” Speaking of Michael Wolff’s book on CNN’s State of the Union, Miller said:
It reads like an angry, vindictive person spouting off to a highly discredible author, … The book is best understood as a work of poorly written fiction. The author is a garbage author of a garbage book. . . . The betrayal of the president in this book is so contrary to the reality of those who work with him.
Not long after Jake Tapper ended that interview abruptly calling Miller “obsequious” and only concerning about “one viewer”, President Trump tweeted:
I’ve had to put up with the Fake News from the first day I announced that I would be running for President. Now I have to put up with a Fake Book, written by a totally discredited author. Ronald Reagan had the same problem and handled it well. So will I!
Speaking to Axios, Bannon appeared to be trying to distance himself from supposed quotes in Fire and Fury and fixing the rupture between the President and himself when he said:
Donald Trump, Jr. is both a patriot and a good man. He has been relentless in his advocacy for his father and the agenda that has helped turn our country around. My support is also unwavering for the president and his agenda — as I have shown daily in my national radio broadcasts, on the pages of Breitbart News and in speeches and appearances from Tokyo and Hong Kong to Arizona and Alabama. President Trump was the only candidate that could have taken on and defeated the Clinton apparatus. I am the only person to date to conduct a global effort to preach the message of Trump and Trumpism, and remain ready to stand in the breach for this president’s efforts to make America great again.
There is no doubt that the president was incensed by Bannon’s comments and repeated an ultimatum for allies to choose sides. He has made it plain there is no middle ground – either his team supports him or Bannon.
Thought they have been far less than friends this first year of his presidency, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell voiced his support for Trump.
Bannon’s mea culpa seems aimed at stemming the tide of his increasing isolation from the Republican Party establishment. Wolff’s book has caused Bannon’s chief financial backer, Rebekah Mercer, to threaten to sever ties. Though he is chairman of Breitbart, there is also debate among the company’s leaders as to whether he should remain.
The president and his staff have repeatedly denied allowing an interview with Wolff, yet he claims to have spoken to numerous “unnamed” sources and the President himself.
The media painted Steve Bannon as the devil over the last year but now is mostly willing to declare him a saint now. Time will tell how that works out.
~ American Liberty Report