President Donald Trump is widely despised and mistrusted by senior officials within his own administration, according to Bob Woodward’s bombshell new book.
The veteran Washington Post reporter’s new book, “Rage,” documents some of those concerns — including a chilling assessment by his former director of national intelligence, Dan Coats.
“[Coats] continued to harbor the secret belief, one that had grown rather than lessened, although unsupported by intelligence proof, that Putin had something on Trump,” Woodward wrote. “How else to explain the president’s behavior? Coats could see no other explanation.”
The former director of national intelligence — who resigned July 28, 2019, right before the Ukraine saga burst into view and launched the impeachment process — and other high-ranking Trump officials shared their concerns about the president.
“There may come a time when we have to take collective action,” Mattis told Coats, according to Woodward. “[He is] dangerous. He’s unfit.”
Coats had been recruited to the administration by Vice President Mike Pence, a fellow Indiana native, and Woodward quoted an interaction between Coats’ wife and the vice president.
“I just looked at him, like, how are you stomaching this?” Marsha Coats said, according to Woodward. “I just looked at him like, this is horrible. I mean, we made eye contact. I think he understood. And he just whispered in my ear, ‘Stay the course.’”
Coats eventually considered resigning over Trump’s behavior toward Russia, but Pence urged him to stay on.
“Look on the positive side of things that he’s done,” Pence said, according to Woodward. “More attention on that. You can’t go.”