Former reality star-turned White House aide Omarosa Manigault Newman on Tuesday said U.S. President Donald Trump needed to be removed from office after the president called her a “dog” and his campaign took legal action against her.
The intensifying spat came as Manigault Newman, a former contestant on Trump’s reality show “The Apprentice,” publicly released more recordings from her time in his orbit as she promoted her tell-all book, “Unhinged,” which describes her year at the White House. She was fired last December.
“When you give a crazed, crying lowlife a break, and give her a job at the White House, I guess it just didn’t work out. Good work by General (John) Kelly for quickly firing that dog!” Trump wrote on Twitter, referring to his chief of staff.
In her book, Manigault Newman accuses Trump of making derogatory statements about African-Americans, Filipinos and other minorities, as well as exhibiting “forgetfulness and frustration.”
“It makes me very concerned. And I think that all Americans should be very concerned,” Manigault Newman told Reuters.
“His mental decline could not be denied,” wrote Manigault Newman, who had been one of the Republican president’s most prominent black supporters.
White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders, asked if she was surprised by Manigault Newman’s animus toward the president, told reporters she was disappointed by what she called the former aide’s self-serving and false claims.
“I think it’s really sad what’s she’s doing,” Sanders told a White House briefing.
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In recent days, Manigault Newman has released audio of her firing by Kelly and of a call from Trump in which he says he did not know about her dismissal.
Manigault Newman said she made the recording to protect herself.
“If I did not tape that exchange with Kelly in the situation room. first of all, no one would believe that they would take me in the basement of the White House, lock me in there for two hours and General Kelly say things like things are going to get ugly for you or you might have damage your reputation,” she said.
On Tuesday, CBS News released another recording it said was unverified but appeared to be Manigault Newman and several Trump campaign aides in October 2016 discussing the potential fallout from a tape of Trump using a racial epithet during the taping of “The Apprentice.”
CBS News’ parent company, CBS Corp, owns Simon and Schuster Inc, which published her book. In it, Manigault Newman describes the recorded conversation as being a conference call held on Oct. 11, 2016. Reuters could not verify any of the recordings.
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Trump on Monday denied the existence of any tape from “The Apprentice” in which he used the racial epithet.
Asked whether she could guarantee such a recording would never surface, Sanders said: “I can’t guarantee anything, but I can tell you that the president addressed this question directly.”
In a related development, a Trump campaign official said the campaign, which is gearing up for his 2020 re-election run, had filed an arbitration against Manigault Newman for breaching a 2016 confidentiality agreement.
Asked about the pact, Manigault Newman told MSNBC she did not believe she had violated it.
She was more circumspect with Reuters.
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“I can’t comment on any pending or current litigation, or arbitration for that matter. But what I will say is the American people should be asking the question of what is he trying to hide what is he so afraid of? Why is he trying to shut me down?”
Trump brought on Manigault Newman, previously known for repeatedly being fired on NBC’s “The Apprentice,” as director of communications for the White House Office of Public Liaison.
Manigault Newman said she feels “complicit” in supporting and promoting Trump.
“We should have banded together to ring the alarm long before it got to this point,” she said.
“And so I take full responsibility for my role but I also talk a lot in ‘Unhinged’ about how I tried to counter those attacks and try to help to minimize the damage particularly to the African-American community.”
© 2018 Reuters