In the new book Peril, by Robert Costa and Bob Woodward, Donald Trump was so desperate for media attention that he leaked that House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) was crawling back to him.
When McCarthy arrived at Mar-a-Lago in late January, Trump met him with the question, "Hey, did you leak this lunch?"
McCarthy said he didn't, noting that Trump's staff must have because he never even told his staffers.
"You think my staff did it?" asked Trump.
"No. I don't think your staff did it," McCarthy replied.
"Well, who do you think did it?" Trump asked.
"You," McCarthy said
The book notes that "Trump seemed very eager to be back in the headlines" and that he bragged that Melania told him, "this has more press than when I met Putin."
In the wake of Trump's time in the White House, he has struggled for attention, sending out, at times, three-word or one-sentence press releases that he normally would have tweeted were he not banned from the website. His comments are filled with flame-throwing language, occasionally curse words and perpetuate his election fraud conspiracies. News networks have largely ignored it.
Political analysts have questioned if Trump is losing his influence, particularly after the Sept. 18 rally had only a few hundred attendees.
While he hosted a rally in Alabama and pledged to have one in Iowa, 2021 hasn't been flooded with Trump events the way it was during his political campaigns.