Published: Wed, September 05, 2018
Arts&Culture | By Kristi Paul

Sarah Sanders rebukes new book on Trump as 'fiction,' touts president's successes

Sarah Sanders rebukes new book on Trump as 'fiction,' touts president's successes

He says the book is "already discredited" with "so many lies and phony sources", rejecting an allegation that he had used the terms "mentally retarded" and "dumb Southerner" to describe Attorney General Jeff Sessions.

According to a Wednesday Axios report, no senior staffers had read the book when the Washington Post first published excerpts on Tuesday. Following the recusal, Trump is believed to have lobbied Republican lawmakers to oust Sessions, who "talks like he has marbles in his mouth", according to White House aides.

President Donald Trump insisted Wednesday that he's "the exact opposite" of Bob Woodward's portrayal of him in a new book that has set off a firestorm in the White House with its descriptions of current and former aides calling Trump an "idiot" and a "liar". It also says he called Trump an "idiot", an account Kelly denied Tuesday. "It's pointless to try to convince him of anything". He always knows where I stand and he and I both know this story is total BS.

"The contemptuous words about the president attributed to me in Woodward's book were never uttered by me or in my presence", Mattis said.

Mattis told Trump he would proceed with such a plan, but immediately told an aide, after getting off the phone with the president that, "We're not going to do any of that". According to Woodward, Cohn told a colleague that Trump never noticed.

"Everything so far I've seen out of this book doesn't depict what's going on in the building behind me".

She said that Trump has had the most successful two years of any president in modern history, pointing to tax cuts, victories against ISIS, the remaking of the judiciary and historic deregulation.

The publication of Woodward's book has been anticipated for weeks, and current and former White House officials estimate that almost all their colleagues cooperated with the famed Watergate journalist. Woodward tells Trump he had contacted multiple officials to attempt to interview Trump and was rebuffed. "They know they can't give him the Michael Wolff treatment", referring to Michael Wolff's White House bombshell "Fire and Fury".

Former defence attorney John Dowd and colleagues did not want Trump to testify before Russian Federation special counsel Robert Mueller because they didn't think he could tell the truth.

The book says Trump's former lawyer in the Russia probe, John Dowd, doubted the president's ability to avoid perjuring himself should he be interviewed in special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian election interference and potential coordination with Trump's campaign.

According to Woodward's reporting, Trump stumbles and contradicts himself during the exercise and Dowd is convinced that Trump should never sit down with Justice Department investigators.

The documents would have allowed the president to withdraw from the North American Free Trade Agreement and a trade deal with South Korea.

Trump told Defence Secretary Jim Mattis he wanted to have Syrian leader Bashar Assad assassinated after evidence surfaced of a chemical weapons attack on rebels in that country; Mattis ignored the request and planned the targeted missile strike on chemical weapons facilities that Trump eventually approved.

Mr Mattis is also quoted as saying Mr Trump had the understanding of "a fifth- or sixth-grader" - the age of 10 or 11 - in understanding foreign affairs.

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