Donald Trump and Michael Cohen are in the midst of an all-out “credibility war.” But on Monday the president and his former longtime personal attorney and fixer found themselves on the same side — at least for the moment — as Cohen denied Omarosa Manigault Newman‘s claim that that she once witnessed Trump eat a note from the attorney in the Oval Office.
“To the many dozens of #journalists who called me, questioning @OMAROSA claim in her new book that @POTUS @realDonaldTrump took a note from me, put it in his mouth and ate it…I saw NO such thing and am shocked anyone would take this seriously,” Cohen tweeted.
In Manigault Newman’s new book, Unhinged, out Tuesday, the ousted White House aide claims that Trump ate the paper in what she suspected was an attempt to destroy “sensitive” information.
“I saw him put a note in his mouth. Since Trump was ever the germaphobe, I was shocked he appeared to be chewing and swallowing the paper. It must have been something very, very sensitive,” Manigault Newman wrote, according to an excerpt of the book obtained by The Washington Post.
Later on Monday, Trump retweeted Cohen’s denial.
And journalist Yashar Ali was quick to point out the irony of the situation.
“The president has retweeted a tweet by his former personal lawyer (who has turned against him and recorded conversations with him) in an effort to fact check his former staffer who also recorded conversations with him,” Ali wrote.
Cohen is currently under investigation for possible tax fraud, which has prompted speculation that he could turn on Trump to avoid potential jail time. Last month, his legal team released a secretly recorded conversation between Cohen and Trump, in which they appeared to be discussing a payment to former Playboy model Karen McDougal, who claims she had an affair with Trump in 2006. Trump has denied having an affair.
Manigault Newman — a former Apprentice star who went on to serve as director of communications for the White House Office of Public Liaison until her firing in December 2017 — followed in Cohen’s footsteps this week when she released two tapes she had secretly recorded of Trump and White House Chief of Staff John Kelly.
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The first tape, which Manigault Newman released during an interview with NBC’s Meet the Press on Sunday, reveals Kelly firing her in a conversation that she claims turned threatening.
In a second tape she released on the Today show on Monday, a voice purportedly belonging to President Trump sounds surprised to hear that Kelly had asked Manigault Newman to leave the White House. “Nobody even told me about it,” Trump is heard saying in the tape.
Shortly after Manigault Newman released the second recording, Trump took to Twitter to attack his former aide.
“Wacky Omarosa, who got fired 3 times on the Apprentice, now got fired for the last time. She never made it, never will,” Trump tweeted. “She begged me for a job, tears in her eyes, I said Ok. People in the White House hated her. She was vicious, but not smart. I would rarely see her but heard….
“…really bad things,” he continued in a second tweet. “Nasty to people & would constantly miss meetings & work. When Gen. Kelly came on board he told me she was a loser & nothing but problems. I told him to try working it out, if possible, because she only said GREAT things about me – until she got fired!”
Press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders also issued a statement saying that Unhinged “is riddled with lies and false accusations,” adding that “it’s sad that a disgruntled former White House employee is trying to profit off these false attacks, and even worse that the media would now give her a platform, after not taking her seriously when she had only positive things to say about the president during her time in the administration.”