Donald Trump reportedly told a friend that “you’ve got to deny” and “push back” whenever accusations of sexual improprieties are made, Bob Woodward claims in his new book.
As the Independent reports, the veteran Watergate reporter makes the damning claim in his new book, Fear, which describes a White House in chaos.
According to an unnamed source who claims to be a friend of the 45th president, at some point, the friend and Trump were discussing sexual harassment claims. It is not clear if the advice Trump supposedly gave this friend came in the context of the friend being accused of sexual abuse. Nevertheless, Trump’s advice was direct.
“You’ve got to deny, deny, deny and push back on these women. If you admit to anything and any culpability, then you’re dead. That was a big mistake you made.”
Trump also encouraged the friend to be relentless in his denials and chastised him for not being more aggressive in the beginning.
“You didn’t come out guns blazing and just challenge them. You showed weakness. You’ve got to be strong. You’ve got to be aggressive. You’ve got to push back hard. You’ve got to deny anything that’s said about you. Never admit.”
Trump himself has been accused by over a dozen women of sexual misconduct. And in a famous quote that surfaced during the 2016 campaign, Trump was caught on an audio recording telling Access Hollywood reporter Billy Bush that when you’re a celebrity such as Trump, you can get away with sexually assaulting women.
“Grab ’em by the p***y.”
As Rolling Stone reports, Trump, his foundation, his university, his associates, and other people and institutions connected to him have been a party to thousands of lawsuits, many still pending, and many of which pertain to alleged sexual abuse.
— The Hill (@thehill) September 12, 2018
Further, Trump has famously paid off at least two women to keep quiet about alleged affairs. Most famously, adult-film actress Stormy Daniels (whose real name is Stephanie Marie Clifford) accepted $130,000 in hush money from Trump associate Michael Cohen to keep quiet about an alleged affair. Similarly, Playboy Playmate Karen McDougal also claims she was paid hush money to keep quiet about an affair with Trump.
Bob Woodward’s Fear, Omarosa Maginault Newman’s Unhinged, and an anonymous editorial by a “senior White House official” published in the New York Times all make similar claims: The Trump administration is being mitigated by an in-house “resistance.” That is to say, aides and officials work together to try to limit Trump’s more explosive and ill-informed efforts, even to the point of snatching papers from his desk before he can read them.