Impeachment Will Leave ‘Deep Scars’ Because Donald Trump Is ‘Acutely Insecure,’ Former Aides Tell ‘The Hill’

Though he is outwardly defiant, impeachment has deeply wounded Trump, according to those close to him.

Donald Trump leaves the podium.
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Though he is outwardly defiant, impeachment has deeply wounded Trump, according to those close to him.

Donald Trump has put on a show of bravado since his impeachment on December 18, condemning the process as a “hoax” and an “assault on America,” as quoted by The Hill in a report published Monday. But privately — according to several former aides and associates who spoke to the publication — Trump feels “its scars deeply,” because he is “acutely insecure.”

After Trump achieved success in his career, his efforts turned to achieving “significance,” according to former senior adviser Omarosa Manigault Newman, who first met the president in 2003 when she was a contestant on the Trump-starring reality TV show, The Apprentice.

Impeachment “undermines his desire to be significant,” she told The Hill, adding that Trump’s impeachment will remain with him as an “asterisk tattooed to his head.”

He is preoccupied with the belief that “everyone is out to get him,” said Barbara Res, a former vice president of The Trump Organization. Her former boss has convinced himself that he is being “treated unfairly” by the House Democrats who carried out the impeachment, she continued.

Her comments appeared to be borne out by Trump himself, who — the day before the impeachment vote — took to Twitter to complain.

“It’s not fair that I’m being Impeached,” he wrote, saying he had done nothing wrong.

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi. Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

Sam Nunberg, a former Trump associate and campaign aide, told The Hill that Trump has reacted in “extremely upset” fashion to impeachment echoes the way he would react, “if you mentioned past bankruptcies.”

The president’s former aides and acquaintances are not alone in seeing him as “insecure.” After he gratuitously insulted the late Michigan congressional representative John Dingell at a campaign rally the same night of the impeachment vote, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi called Trump “insecure” as well. At the rally, Trump suggested that Dingell — who passed away in February of this year — was “looking up” from hell.

Pelosi said that “the president clearly is insecure when it comes to statespersons — whether it was John McCain… now John Dingell,” as quoted via Twitter by CNN reporter Josh Campbell.

In an interview with the online magazine Salon published on Monday, former The George Washington University Medical Center psychiatry professor Justin Frank compared Trump to a “a little child,” based on a seven-page letter Trump wrote to Pelosi, cataloguing a lengthy list of grievances he had regarding his impeachment.

The “childish” letter exemplified what Frank described as Trump’s focus on “always being a victim.” His repeated accusations against the speaker and other House Democrats — calling them “traitors,” for example — is just another symptom of mental illness. Frank described the symptom as “delusional projection.”

“Projection” is the psychological phenomenon of assigning one’s own personality flaws to others. According to Frank, “delusional projection” is seen only in “very disturbed people” — primarily hospitalized mental patients — whose projections are not subtle but so disconnected from actual reality “that everybody can see that they are delusional.”