×
FOLLOW THE WEEK ON FACEBOOK
August 14, 2018

It's unclear what prompted President Trump's mean tweet about former White House aide Omarosa Manigault Newman on Tuesday morning, but he sent this short diatribe exactly 18 minutes after CBS This Morning posted a new recording from Manigault Newman that purports to lend credence to her claim that the president was recorded saying the N-word.

Trump's new attacks on Omarosa — "crazed, crying lowlife" and "dog" — follow earlier tweets in which he called her a "loser" and "not smart." In other words, as author Isaac Fitzgerald noted in response to Trump's tweet, the president's not doing much to undermine Manigault Newman's assertion that he's a racist. Peter Weber

August 13, 2018
Win McNamee/Getty Images

President Trump tweeted on Monday night that Mark Burnett, the producer of The Apprentice, "called to say that there are NO TAPES of the Apprentice where I used such a terrible and disgusting word as attributed by Wacky and Deranged Omarosa."

Trump is referring to Omarosa Manigault Newman, his former White House adviser and a repeat Apprentice contestant, who on Sunday said she personally heard a recording of Trump using the N-word during filming for the show. "I don't have that word in my vocabulary, and never have," Trump tweeted, adding that Omarosa said "such wonderful and powerful things about me — a true Champion of Civil Rights — until she got fired."

In 2016, after the Access Hollywood tape featuring Trump bragging about assaulting women was released, Burnett announced he could not release any tapes of Trump on the set of The Apprentice due to "various contractual and legal requirements." Burnett released a statement that he was "NOT 'Pro-Trump'" and he and his wife, actress Roma Downey, "reject the hatred, division, and misogyny that has been a very unfortunate part of his campaign." Catherine Garcia

August 7, 2018

In May, President Trump unilaterally pulled the U.S. out of a 2015 nuclear deal negotiated with Iran and a handful of world powers. On Monday, Trump followed through with his threat to reimpose sanctions lifted under the deal, despite strident protest from European allies. He defended his actions in a tweet early Tuesday and not-so-subtly warned Europe that it had better follow his lead.

Trump's assertion that he's "asking for WORLD PEACE, nothing less!" is probably galling to Europe, since Iran was, by all accounts, following through with its end of the bargain. Under the deal, Iran agreed to largely dismantle its nuclear infrastructure and prove that it was not taking steps to develop a nuclear weapon for at least 10-15 years. Peter Weber

August 2, 2018

In a solemn ceremony at a military base in Hawaii on Wednesday, Vice President Mike Pence and Adm. Phil Davidson, commander of U.S. forces in Asia, presided over the formal repatriation of what Pyongyang says are 55 caskets carrying the remains of U.S. service members killed in North Korea during the Korean War. Forensic anthropologists and scientists at the base will now work to identify the remains.

"They were husbands and fathers, brothers and neighbors — long gone, but never lost to the memory of their loved ones," Pence said. "Today, our boys are coming home." He said President Trump was grateful that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un followed through on his promise, at least in this case, calling it "tangible progress in our efforts to achieve peace on the Korean Peninsula." Trump also tweeted his own thanks:

The Pentagon's POW/MIA Accounting Agency will use sophisticated DNA analysis but it "usually also relies on any items that may have been found with remains like uniforms, dog tags, and wedding rings to identify remains," The Associated Press says. "But North Korea only provided one dog tag with the 55 boxes it handed over last week." Also, in previous handovers, Pyongyang gave the U.S. "unidentifiable bones of many people and some animals," notes a skeptical Jonathan Chait at New York. "The good news, from Trump's standpoint, is that it will take years to definitively identify the remains. So Trump can keep bragging about how he got back the remains of our great heroes without the media being able to definitively assert that he has not." Peter Weber

April 25, 2018

Once again, it seems that with President Trump, there is a tweet for everything.

Trump hosted his first state dinner, for French President Emmanuel Macron, on Tuesday night, and while no Democratic members of Congress were invited, several top Trump donors made the list, as MSNBC's David Gura noted:

Also in attendance were Estée Lauder heir Ronald Lauder, who has donated heavily to Republicans in Congress and gave $1.1 million to a group that ran anti-Muslim ads right before the 2016 election, according to OpenSecrets, and Rupert Murdoch, whose Fox News channel employs several high-profile Trump boosters. Overall, however, the guest list "was fairly standard for events like these, filled mostly with White House officials, Cabinet members, the diplomatic corps, and a smattering of surprise faces," The Washington Post notes, and the dinner itself went off "without any major glitches." You can catch a glimpse of the decor and guests in the video of Trump's toast below. Peter Weber

April 18, 2018

In a series of early morning tweets from Mar-a-Lago on Wednesday, President Trump confirmed that CIA Director Mike Pompeo had met with North Korea's Kim Jong Un to prepare for a Trump-Kim summit and predicted that "denuclearization will be a great thing for World, but also for North Korea!"; accused California Gov. Jerry Brown (D) of "trying to back out of the National Guard at the Border, but the people of the State are not happy. Want Security & Safety NOW!"; and issued his first tweet about Stormy Daniels, the pornographic actress who said she slept with him in 2006.

In his Daniels comment, Trump was responding to a tweet from an admirer who juxtaposed a photo of Daniels' ex-boyfriend with the sketch Daniels released Tuesday of a man she said threatened her to keep quiet about her affair with Trump, suggesting the two vaguely similar men were the same person. Trump apparently found the theory plausible:

Though, really, you could do a similar comparison with lots of men:

In any case, Daniels' lawyer, Michael Avenatti, appeared thrilled that Trump, once again, mentioned his client in public. He subtweeted Trump:

Avenatti is trying to get Daniels out of a nondisclosure agreement that Trump lawyer Michael Cohen paid her $130,000 to sign in October 2016. That payment is reportedly one of the reasons the FBI raided Cohen's office last week. Peter Weber

April 12, 2018

President Trump's Thursday morning tweets included a thank you note to California Gov. Jerry Brown (D) for deploying the National Guard to the Mexican border (where they will not work to detain immigrants or refugees) and good luck wishes to CIA Director Mike Pompeo, who faces a tough confirmation hearing to be secretary of state Thursday morning. But he also seemed determined to set the record straight, first on a New York Times report that he moved to fire Special Counsel Robert Mueller in December and then on his Wednesday morning threat to fire missiles at Syria.

The New York Times report on Mueller cited eight White House officials and people close to Trump, and while Trump insists he has the right to fire Mueller himself, that's an open legal question. According to The Washington Post and its 21 sources, Trump's aides were shocked at his tweeted threat to send "nice, new, and 'smart!'" missiles into Syria, but they "quickly regrouped and, together with Pentagon brass, continued readying Syria options for Trump as if nothing had happened." And last week, Syrian Kurdish officials warned that the Islamic State is entrenched and gaining strength in its remaining pockets along the Syria side of the Iraq border. Peter Weber

April 10, 2018

Early Tuesday morning, President Trump returned to his critique of the FBI's raid on his longtime personal lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen, tweeting that "attorney–client privilege is dead!" and this is "A TOTAL WITCH HUNT!!!" Trump railed against what he called Special Counsel Robert Mueller's Democratic "witch hunt" in public comments on Monday evening, but on Tuesday's Morning Joe, host Joe Scarborough pointed out that Monday's raid was orchestrated by U.S. Attorney Geoffrey Berman, "Rudy Giuliani's former law partner who Giuliani got appointed to the Southern District of New York as a prosecutor."

"This was a Trump man, a Trump contributor, and a Giuliani man who executed this search warrant," Scarborough said. "This is his doing, it was not Robert Mueller's doing, and there's nothing Donald Trump can say and there's no lies that he can try to spread that will change that."

"This raid was no Democratic fishing expedition," Scarborough added in a tweet. "This is Rudy's protégé running an investigation of a president whose campaign he cut a $5,400 check to in 2016. Trump interviewed and appointed him. Some conspiracy." On CNN's New Day, political analyst John Avlon noted that this is Trump's first crisis without Hope Hicks, his communications director and handler, but agreed that Trump also must be "reconciling himself to the fact that this is his Justice Department, this is a U.S. attorney for the Southern District appointed by him to replace Preet Bharara, so there's got to be an extra sense of betrayal which may further inflame his actions."

Jeffrey Toobin went on to argue that Mueller's investigation "absolutely" might end if Trump orders him fired. "This is a very important point, that the president really has within his ability to stop this investigation," he said. Luckily, Trump was probably watching Fox & Friends. Peter Weber

See More Speed Reads