Trump, Kim Jong Un Might Still Be in Touch

Book reveals Trump's casual racism, apparently ongoing relationship with North Korean leader
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 28, 2022 9:50 AM CDT
Trump's Fav Presidential Perk: 'So Many Rich Friends'
Former President Donald Trump is seen at a rally on Friday in Wilmington, NC.   (AP Photo/Chris Seward)

We already know Maggie Haberman's upcoming book on President Trump claims he vowed not to leave the White House and clogged toilets trying to flush away papers. Now new revelations are flooding out ahead of Tuesday's release of Confidence Man: The Making of Donald Trump and the Breaking of America, based in part on three interviews with the former president. Among those revelations: Trump, in conversation with a guest, gave the impression that he didn't want to use the same toilet as Barack Obama. More:

  • Casual racism: At a White House reception in January 2017, Trump turned to racially diverse aides for Democratic congressional staffers and, assuming they were waiters, asked them to get the canapes, writes Haberman, a New York Times reporter, per Rolling Stone. In another exchange, Trump told a guest about changes made to White House bathrooms, which the guest took to mean that "Trump did not want to use the same bathroom as his Black predecessor."

  • Seeking the white supremacist vote: When Chris Christie pressed Trump to condemn white supremacists during his 2016 campaign, Trump responded that he was in no rush to do so, the book reads, per the Washington Post. "A lot of these people vote," he said.
  • Denies taking documents: In September 2021, Trump told Haberman that he didn't take important documents from the White House. "Most of it is in the archives, but the Kim Jong Un letters ... We have incredible things," he said, per Axios. Letters from the North Korean leader, then in his possession, would be turned over to the National Archives months later.
  • His buddy Kim: Trump told Haberman that he'd kept in touch with other world leaders, but not Russia's Vladimir Putin or China's Xi Jinping. Asked about Kim Jong Un, however, he responded, "Well, I don't want to say exactly," and then trailed off, per the Atlantic. Haberman writes that Trump had then been telling others that he and Kim were in contact.

  • A classified photo: Aides at one time tried to prevent Trump from tweeting a photo of an Iranian facility that was marked as classified, until key details could be removed, the book reads, per the Post. "If you take out the classification, that's the sexy part," Trump apparently said.
  • Bombing drug labs: His idea to stop illicit substances crossing the southern border into the US involved dropping bombs on Mexican drug labs. "He raised it several times, eventually asking a stunned Defense Secretary Mark Esper whether the United States could indeed bomb the labs," writes Haberman, per the Post.
  • Interactions with female leaders: He once referred to German Prime Minister Angela Merkel as "that b----," according to Haberman. In his first meeting with British Prime Minister Theresa May, Trump reportedly brought up abortion, saying, "Imagine if some animals with tattoos raped your daughter and she got pregnant."

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  • Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump: Essentially, he wanted them out. According to the book, he told officials to fire them, but they refused, unsure whether Trump would back them up. Another time, Trump drafted a tweet saying the pair were leaving the White House, but he was told to talk to them before sending it. No change occurred.
  • On Jan. 6: "I didn't usually have the television on. I'd have it on if there was something. I then later turned it on and I saw what was happening," Trump told Haberman. "I had heard that afterward and actually on the late side. I was having meetings. I was also with Mark Meadows and others. I was not watching television."
  • Presidential benefits: So is Trump glad he ran for president? "The answer is, yeah, I think so," he said. "Because here's the way I look at it. I have so many rich friends and nobody knows who they are." "He then went on to talk about how much easier his life would have been had he not run," Haberman writes, per the Atlantic.
(More Donald Trump stories.)

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