According to excerpts from Michael Wolff's new book, "Landslide: The Final Days of the Trump Presidency", Donald Trump and his inner circle were stunned by how out of control the march on the U.S. Capitol became as it turned into a riot that had lawmakers running for their lives.
The Guardian's Edward Helmore reports that the new book reveals confusion on the part of many at the White House after Trump's chief of staff Mark Meadows had to intercede in the belief that the former president was going to march on the Capitol with attendees who showed up for his "Save America" rally.
Quoting from the book, Helmore wrote that after Trump told the rallygoers, "We're going to walk down [to the Capitol to protest] – and I'll be there with you," Meadows "was reportedly approached by concerned Secret Service agents, who he told: 'No. There's no way we are going to the Capitol.'"
As Trump's mood went from pleased to dismayed at how the march unfolded, telling Meadows, "How bad is this? This looks terrible. This is really bad. Who are these people? These aren't our people, these idiots with these outfits. They look like Democrats," others close to the ex-president reacted in different ways.
"Ivanka Trump, the president's daughter and adviser, reportedly saw the assault on the Capitol as 'an optics issue'", Wolff wrote adding that Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani "was "drinking heavily and in a constant state of excitation, often almost incoherent in his agitation and mania."
Wolff's book also adds that Trump's inner circle became alarmed when they realized that Vice President Mike Pence was not going to intercede on the now ex-president's behalf during the vote certification.
"The White House, Wolff writes, soon realized Mike Pence had 'concluded that he was not able to reject votes unilaterally or, in effect, to do anything else, beyond playing his ceremonial role, that the president might want him to do'", the report states, adding, "Trump aide Jason Miller is portrayed as saying 'Oh, sh*t' and alerting the president's lawyer and chief cheerleader for his lie about electoral fraud, Rudy Giuliani."
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