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Trump Demands NYT Turn Over Anonymous White House Critic

September 7, 2018 by  

VOA

Top Trump administration officials are denying they are the author of an anonymous New York Times opinion piece criticizing President Donald Trump’s “petty and ineffective” leadership style. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, speaking during a visit to India, called the article “sad,” saying he finds “the media’s efforts in this regard to undermine this administration incredibly disturbing.” The director of national intelligence, Dan Coats, released a statement saying: “Speculation that The New York Times op-ed was written by me or my Principal Deputy is patently false. We did not.” Others issuing denials included Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, U.N. ambassador Nikki Haley, Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin, Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, Labor Secretary Alex Acosta and Energy Secretary Rick Perry. The Times said the author is a senior administration official whose job would be jeopardized if that person’s identity is made public.

The anonymous writer asserts the president’s worst impulses are frequently foiled by his own staff.

WATCH: Trump Officials Denounce Anonymous Attack From ‘The Quiet Resistance’

There for ‘all the wrong reasons’

Trump, asked earlier Wednesday about the article following an event in the East Room, called it “gutless” and launched into an extended criticism of the newspaper.

“They don’t like Donald Trump and I don’t like them because they’re very dishonest people,” the president told reporters.

Trump characterized the writer of the opinion piece as someone “probably who is failing and probably here for all the wrong reasons.”

Trump ended his night on Twitter by declaring: “I’m draining the Swamp, and the Swamp is trying to fight back. Don’t worry, we will win!”

Just after Trump’s impromptu remarks, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders issued a statement calling the article “pathetic, reckless, and selfish,” describing the action as “a new low for the so-called paper of record.’”

Sanders said the Times should issue an apology, calling the article’s publication “another example of the liberal media’s concerted effort to discredit the President.”

As for the anonymous author, the press secretary accused the person of “not putting country first, but putting himself and his ego ahead of the will of the American people. This coward should do the right thing and resign.”

Support for agenda

The article plays into anecdotes released Tuesday from reporter Bob Woodward’s new book “Fear”, which alleges Trump’s staff has stolen important documents off his desk. The book is scheduled for release next Tuesday.

Trump terms the book as “fiction.”

 

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