Considering Donald Trump tried to stop publication of Michael Wolff’s 2018 White House exposé “Fire and Fury,” it might seem strange that the former president agreed to interviews for Wolff’s latest book, “Landslide: The Final Days of the Trump Presidency.”
But Trump did sit down with Wolff for the new book. In fact, in an interview published Monday in the German newspaper Der Spiegel, Wolff said the president actually sought him out after the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol.
Surprised? Well, Wolff said the former president approached him for a very Trumpian reason.
“Trump told his people that guy ― me ― gets big ratings, so let’s see him. For Trump, the goal is almost entirely the media attention. Good, bad, indifferent, doesn’t matter,” Wolff said. “I’m not the only author he has seen, but I would assume that I’m the most disliked author that he’s seen. But that doesn’t play into his conception of the world.”
“It’s not like or dislike,” he went on. “It’s not right or wrong. It’s what can you do for me? It’s just about answering his needs, desires and inclinations in the moment. So, here’s a guy, he sells a lot of books, why not? And it’s not as if you’re going there and actually having an exchange.”
Wolff said that when Trump is being interviewed, he only cares about the sound of his own voice.
“The people he talks to are ultimately interchangeable,” Wolff said.
Still, Wolff said that when he and the former president chatted for the new book at the Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida, “it was like he was seeing his best and oldest friend.”
“He said, those books you wrote were very mean and very wrong. But I don’t blame you. I blame my people who talked to you,” Wolff recalled.
Although Trump keeps falsely insisting he won the 2020 election, Wolff said that among the White House, the campaign and Trump’s family, the only other person who took the claims seriously was Rudy Giuliani.
Wolff also discounted the notion that Jan. 6 was an attempted coup ― because, he said, Trump isn’t smart enough to do that.
“There was no plan. He is deranged,” Wolff said. “The guy can’t get from the beginning of the sentence to the end of a sentence. Everybody knows there was no election fraud, except Trump and his lawyer Rudy Giuliani. It’s like they’re on some other planet.”