Published: Fri, September 14, 2018
Life&Culture | By Mildred Hamilton

Bob Woodward opens up to Dana Perino in exclusive Fox News interview

Bob Woodward opens up to Dana Perino in exclusive Fox News interview

In his book Fear, which comes out Tuesday, Woodward describes Trump behaving erratically and impulsively, even on significant issues of national security, and insulting some of his senior officials.

Mr Trump said of the book on Twitter: "Isn't it a shame that someone can write an article or book, totally make up stories and form a picture of a person that is literally the exact opposite of the fact, and get away with it without retribution or cost".

"(Defense Secretary) James Mattis says we're doing this to prevent World War III", Woodward added. It depicts a "two-track presidency" in which Trump acts according to his own whims while many of his top aides, in the author's words, work to thwart his "more misguided impulses until he is out of office".

Several prominent figures in the book have denied quotes that Woodward attributes to them.

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But Woodward stands by his reporting. "Because we go up and every time you go up they want to raise rates again".

"These are political statements to protect their jobs? totally understandable", Woodward said on NBC's "Today" speaking about the denials.

When I became a book critic at the Post in 2015, I never imagined I'd be writing so much about Donald J. Trump. "We're told the book is based on hundreds of hours of interviews, most of which were taped with the consent of the source". "I just said I'd like to record this, Mr. President, when he called, and he said, 'Okay, ' so I turned on the tape recorder". The White House has blasted the book, and Trump on Monday referred to it as a "scam". Also, Woodward steers clear of Trump's controversial decision to move the USA embassy to Jerusalem, thanks in part to the efforts of his ardently pro-Israel son-in-law Jared Kushner. The letter stated that the US was planning to withdraw from a trade agreement with South Korea. Woodward notes a September 2017 incident, for instance, in which Trump economic advisor Gary Cohn withdrew papers from the president's desk which would keep him from withdrawing from KORUS, a key trade agreement with South Korea.

"We're underestimating how serious all of this is", Woodward tells NPR. There had been rumors for some time that certain people wanted the USA president to follow in Richard Nixon's footsteps and step down, and Vice President Mike Pence to take over.

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Colbert then goes through the book's final scene, where Trump's lawyers put him through a mock interview with Robert Mueller.

Woodward said he was "deeply surprised" when Trump announced tariffs on steel and aluminum from Canada and other countries.

Honestly, Colbert's first question, about how on Earth people still think it's a good idea to talk to Woodward, is probably one that a lot of people have.

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