Published: Thu, September 06, 2018
Arts&Culture | By Kristi Paul

Donald Trump condemns Bob Woodward book as 'con'

President Donald Trump's former attorney in the Russian Federation investigation says scenes and comments in journalist Bob Woodward's explosive new book on Trump did not occur.

According to Woodward's book, Trump called Attorney General Jeff Sessions "mentally retarded" and told defence chiefs about Syrian leader Bashar Assad: "Let's f****** kill him".

In a meeting about the Korean Peninsula, Trump's comments left Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis to say that Trump understood the matter at hand like a "fifth or sixth grader".

"We are going to take a strong look at our country's libel laws, so that when somebody says something that is false and defamatory about someone, that person will have meaningful recourse in our courts", Mr. Trump threatened in January. It describes how Trump's closest aides have taken extraordinary measures in the White House to try to stop what they saw as his most unsafe impulses, going so far as to swipe and hide papers from his desk so he wouldn't sign them.

Woodward also reveals that Trump orders print outs of his tweets and studied them to find out which ones were most popular. Shah reports directly to White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders and regularly addresses reporters on the president's behalf.

On Tuesday, Kelly denied in a statement that he had ever called Trump an "idiot".

Mattis said Tuesday in a statement: "The contemptuous words about the President attributed to me in Woodward's book were never uttered by me or in my presence".

"Sekulow's answer was classic Trump - an answer spun out of thin air, with contradictions, made-up stuff, anger", Woodward wrote. "It's either that or an orange jumpsuit". Likewise other stories and quotes.

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.

By Wednesday afternoon, White House reporters noted a slight change in the tone of official statements, implicitly accepting some internal strife.

Although Trump begins the conversation with Woodward saying, "I think you've always been fair", once he determines the journalist is writing a tough book (which Trump characterizes as negative), his demeanor changes.

He continued on Wednesday: "The already discredited Woodward book, so many lies and phony sources, has me calling Jeff Sessions "mentally retarded" and "a dumb southerner". The United States twice has attacked targets inside Syria as punishment for Assad's use of chemical weapons. He said the early release of information from the book this week was created to interfere with confirmation hearings for Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, "which I don't think it's done". McMaster does not play as much of a role in the portions of the book released this week, although Woodward does mention that Trump once denigrated the former adviser as a guy who wears cheap suits like a beer salesman. Subjects and critics of Woodward's books over the years have complained about his zealous approach to narrative reconstructions and some of the details in his reporting, while largely failing to undermine the broader thrusts of a body of work built upon heaps of in-depth, recorded interviews and ample documentation. I said NEITHER, never used those terms on anyone, including Jeff, and being a southerner is a GREAT thing.

"They don't tell me", Trump replied.

Did the president speak to Woodward?

"This is the worst job I've ever had".

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