President Trump initially thought he was going to lose to Hillary Clinton on election night and bemoaned the waste of resources expended to become president, according to “Let Trump be Trump,” a new book by former Trump campaign aides David Bossie and Corey Lewandowski.
From a Politico article about the book:
“What a waste of time and money,” they say Trump said on election night when it looked like it he was going to lose, before greeting his sudden turnaround with, “Dave, can you believe this? We just started this to have some fun.”
In an interview with Politico, Bossie and Lewandowski refused to say whether Trump would remain in the Republican Party or whether he would stay committed to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McCoennell or House Speaker Paul Ryan, noting that Trump has had to fight the GOP establishment as well as Democrats.
The book describes how in August 2016 campaign chairman Paul Manafort was first demoted when a report appeared saying he had received a multimillion dollar payment from Ukraine and then, a few days later, fired.
From an excerpt from the book in Politico:
“I’ve got a crook running my campaign,” Trump said when he read it.
Trump told Bannon to fire Manafort right away. Steve argued that firing his campaign chairman would cause a shitstorm of bad press. Instead, he argued that Trump should take away his authority and give him a new title, which is what happened. When the campaign announced the new team, Bannon had the title of campaign CEO, Kellyanne Conway was the campaign manager and Manafort remained the title of campaign chairman.
The kill shot for Paul came on Thursday August 18, when Trump was about to go onstage at a rally in Charlotte, North Carolina. A friend showed him a printout of an AP story written by Jeff Horwitz and Chad Day. Based on emails that the AP had obtained, the story described Manafort running “a covert Washington lobbying operation on behalf of Ukraine’s ruling political party, attempting to sway American public opinion in favor of the country’s pro-Russian government.” It also said that Manafort and his deputy, Rick Gates, had “never disclosed their work as foreign agents as required under federal law.”
“Tell Jared to fire him,” Trump said.
The next morning at a breakfast meeting in Trump Tower, Jared asked Manafort to resign. At first, Paul balked. He was worried about the perception of being forced out of the campaign right after the Ukraine stories broke.
“It will make me look guilty,” he said.
Jared told him there wasn’t much that could be done. A press release was going out in 60 seconds.
The Politico article says Trump derided his current communications director, Hope Hicks, during the transition:
Among the moments served up as classic inside dish is a phone conversation between Lewandowski and Trump during the transition noting how bare bones their initial operation was, when the former campaign manager brings up now-White House communications director Hope Hicks, at the time a 28-year-old political novice:
Trump: “She had about as much experience as a coffee cup.”
Lewandowski: “But she’s good looking.”
Trump: “That always helps.”
Hicks didn’t respond to an email asking how she felt about this being in the book, or another scene in which candidate Trump is described as hearing an argument between Hicks and aide A.J. Delgado on the campaign plane and lowering his newspaper just long enough to yell “Cat fight!”
Breitbart also has an excerpt from the book here.