Trump Officials Deny They Wrote New York Times Op-Ed

Geneva Stokes
September 7, 2018

The Woodward book, Fear: Trump in the White House, reported that senior aides lifted documents from the Oval Office desk to keep the president from acting on his impulses, reinforcing the assertions in the Times op-ed piece.

He suggested it "may not be a Republican, it may not be a conservative, it may be a deep state person who has been there for a long time".

"If you're a working journalist and you believe that Donald J. Trump is a demagogue playing to the nation's worst racist and nationalistic tendencies, that he cozies up to anti-American dictators and that he would be unsafe with control of the United States nuclear codes, how the heck are you supposed to cover him?"

The unsigned column drew disavowals from at least 11 advisers to Trump, including Vice President Mike Pence, Ambassador to Russia Jon Huntsman, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Defense Secretary James Mattis.

"Nobody knows who the hell he is, or she", Trump told supporters at a rally in Billings, Montana, adding: "Unidentified deep state operatives who defy voters to push their secret agendas are truly a threat to democracy itself".

The writer describes the president as "impetuous, adversarial, petty and ineffective". White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders called on the anonymous official to resign.

Trump has been very upset and vocal about the article.

So far, no senior staff member has come forward to claim the blistering op-ed about Donald Trump, and a number of others have released statements saying it was not them. "I don't know how Donald Trump is going to react to this".

Invoking national security concerns, Trump said the paper should publish the official's name, before encouraging reporters to investigate the matter.

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"The thing about the op-ed is that reading its text, you can think the writer is 'principled, ' as the NYT did".

Vice President Mike Pence also denied writing the opinion piece.

The reaction inside the White House on Wednesday afternoon ranged from shock to disbelief to frustration.

But as the president took the stage, the fallout lingered from the anonymous account published Wednesday in the New York Times.

With many prominent administration members delivering on-the-record denials, the focus could now fall on other senior aides to do the same, with questions raised about those who stay silent.

Some of that concern was seen on the third day of a contentious Senate confirmation hearing for Mr Trump's nominee for Justice of the Supreme Court, Judge Brett Kavanaugh, who was grilled by Democrat Party Senators over his opinion on key issues including whether he believes a sitting President can be indicted.

But Mrs. Trump struck a different note than her husband, prefacing her criticism by proclaiming the importance of first-amendment freedoms.

The critical spotlight on Trump's leadership comes just two months before midterm elections in which his fellow Republicans are seeking to maintain control of Congress. "And guess what? No one is going to come close to beating me in 2020".

The writer claims staff are alarmed at the president's erratic behaviour and that there's a resistance within the administration.

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