Sputnik: How damaging is the book to Trump's reputation?
Edward Hardy: This is the third book that the White House is dealing with that examines the inner workings of the current administration. We have Bob Woodward's book, we have Omarosa's book "Unhinged," which has been all over the news recently and Michael Wolff's book from several months back — they all presented a similar picture of the White House that is in disarray, and books that were backed by the recent anonymous New York Times op-ed which was from a senior White House administration official. So, Bob Woodward's book is just another in a long line of books and articles that portrayed the Trump administration as "chaotic and erratic," a quote from the New York Times op-ed that labeled Donald Trump's leadership as "impetuous, adversarial, petty and ineffective." These are all things are backed up by Bob Woodward's book that are referenced in there, so it's another damaging blow to the Trump administration.
Sputnik: But is it also more damaging because this is, as you said, the third book and we also had the op-ed and this is all in a short period of time and they all are saying similar things? I mean, it's either a conspiracy or they are telling the story of what is actually going on.
Edward Hardy: Exactly, the biggest issue that the White House is dealing with here, the problem that they are trying to tackle, is when you have one book, it is relatively easy to deny that and say, "This has been made up by staffers that were disgruntled, etc., etc., which they tried to do with Omarosa or when they had Michael Wolff, the Trump administration claimed that he did not have proof and these were just exaggerated statements and baseless fabricated work. Whereas with Bob Woodward's this is the third one that presenting a similar picture and the big issue with Bob Woodward is that this is the man who keeps tapes. He is known for having the receipts when it comes to the statements that he will put in his book, the quotes, the sources, that he will use. So these suggestions, these quotes, these sources that are in Bob Woodward's book — he has these on tape, he has this proof. So, it's really difficult for the White House now to deny that this is what's going on inside.
Sputnik: And it's also interesting that Woodward was the man who was very instrumental in bringing [ex-President Richard] Nixon down. I am just wondering if you think that this exposes, if you will, is going to be as damaging as some of his other publications were for Nixon.
Edward Hardy: Well, Bob Woodward has covered numerous presidents. He became famous for his work bringing down Nixon with Watergate, but he'd done it to other presidents as well: Bill Clinton, two books released in 1994 for midterms and 1996 for the presidential election, there were books before George Bush, again, 2002 and 2004 and Obama 2010 and 2012. And these books do have an impact, they are going to get people thinking at the very least, but they could change people's mind and when there are undecided voters out there that might be on fence, if they see this happening, and they believe that there needs to be a stronger check on the Trump administration, they might go out and vote Democrat in November because they want a Democratic Congress to hold the White House to account, to keep it in check. So, this could really have an impact.
The views and opinions expressed by Edward Hardy are those of the speaker and do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.