President Trump lashed out at the author of a soon-to-be-released book about the chaotic first year of his presidency Thursday night.
In a tweet, Trump called “Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House,” a “phony book” and claimed that he’d never spoken to its author, Michael Wolff.
“Look at this guy’s past and watch what happens to him and Sloppy Steve!” Trump wrote. He appeared to be referring to former White House chief strategist Stephen K. Bannon, whose stunning criticisms of Trump and his circle figure prominently in the title.
Trump’s tweet came hours after he had his lawyer demand that Henry Holt & Co. and Wolff stop publication the book.
Instead, the publisher expedited the book’s release to Friday, four days before it was slated to hit bookstore shelves, in response to “unprecedented demand.” Published excerpts on Wednesday and Thursday whetted that appetite and roiled Washington.
Bannon’s comments, including that it was “treasonous” and “unpatriotic” for Trump’s son Donald Trump Jr., son-in-law Jared Kushner and campaign manager Paul Manafort to have met in 2016 with Russians said to have “dirt” on Democratic rival Hillary Clinton, prompted Trump on Wednesday to rebuke his former advisor, saying Bannon had “lost his mind.”
— This post contains reporting from Times staff writers Brian Bennett and Alex Wigglesworth.