The former "Apprentice" contestant and White House aide opens up about why she started making recordings, why she followed Trump so long and why she might stop releasing tapes.
Omarosa Manigault-Newman's promotoinal tour for her new book "Unhinged" took her to "The Daily Show" and a long chat with Trevor Noah, where she revealed how easy it is to actually defeat Donald Trump.
According to the former White House aide and "Apprentice" contestant, who has known the president for 15 years, it's the same way you would defeat any classic narcissist. Simply deny them the one thing they want more than anything: attention.
Now that Omarosa has decided to come after the president, Noah asked her to use her insight into the man gained over their long relationship to tell us the best way to defeat him. And according to Omarosa, the press and his political enemies are going about it all wrong.
"There’s one way to shut Donald Trump down and that is to just not give him the oxygen," she said. "And the oxygen comes from the clicks, the likes, the shock, the discussion. Like when he attacked LeBron James and everybody was just, ‘Oh my god!’ Donald Trump enjoyed every moment of that.
"He enjoyed every single person that was shocked by his abrasiveness, his attack on this African-American male athlete; which is favorite go-to thing. He loved it and he thrived off of it. If you ignore him, then you starve him of the thing he loves the most, and that his controversy and attention."
Of course, Omarosa isn't starving him of oxygen at all with the release of "Unhinged," and all these talk show appearances. If he thrives on shock, discussion and clicks, Omarosa is giving him plenty of that day after day. Below are the xx biggest revelations from her frank discussion with Noah.
She Had a Blind Spot for Trump
Omarosa admitted to having a blind spot when it came to President Trump for years, missing all of the clues that others have claimed assert him as a racist. It may simply be a matter of failing to fully see someone she looked up to and admired when she first meet him.
"I met him back in 2003 when I was a young, up-and-coming business woman. I wanted to lead one of his companies. He inspired me. I wanted to be a billionaire." And despite knowing many of his character flaws, she thought he would step up and be able to lead as president.
"I hoped that he would rise to the occasion, I mean, to the greatest honor that any person can have," she said. "I thought that he could actually rise to the occasion of being presidential, and boy was I wrong. I mean, every single day he dismantles the dignity of that office."
After being away from him for the past seven months, though, she said she's gained a new perspective on the man and herself. "I looked like the biggest dummy following this person because I did not have that same perspective," she said. "Sometimes you have to step back in order to get a clear view and I recognize that I was going down the wrong path."
Motive Behind Recordings
Perhaps the simplest motive behind Omarosa recording so many of her interactions in the White House has to do with credibility. She claims the White House lacks it, and presumably she has to be aware that she lacks it as well. A notorious villain on "The Apprentice," Omarosa has proven willing to lie and scheme to advance herself professionally.
When she asked Noah if he would have believed the claims in her book without recordings to back some of them, he immediately told her no. " I wouldn’t have believed you, genuinely, because I don’t think I believe many of the people who come out of the White House," he said. "Because you don’t know what to believe when you’ve been gaslighted to the point you don’t know what the truth is."
She further painted a picture of her recording these moments specifically for the purpose of blowing the whistle on the White House. "I knew that I had to cover my back and document what I saw as an opportunity to kind of blow the whistle on a lot of the corruption going on in the White House," she said. "And I knew that I needed to document that corruption, otherwise, people would not take it seriously."
Recording Release Strategy
Noah wanted to know why she was releasing these recordings so methodically and strategically. As he explained it, she appeared to be going for maximum dramatic affect. Omarosa would make an outlandish claim, someone in the White House would deny it and then she would hit them back with audio proof. But the reality star insists she is not "trolling" the White House.
"When Katrina Pearson came out and made that long statement that she had never had any conversations related to the n-word tape, she never remembered talking to me, none of that happened; in fact, she said I was writing a script for a movie; I was sitting back going, really," Omarosa said of the latest incident of exactly what Noah described. "I was never intending to share that."
The "Daily Show" host compared it to an artist releasing singles when the fans are hungry for the whole album. Why is Omarosa holding on to these recordings, and why isn't she just releasing all of them if she is, as she says, determined to be a whistleblower on this administration. What's the holdup?
More Recordings to Come?
Unfortunately, the near-constant stream of recordings may be coming to a halt, though perhaps only temporarily. When asked about the recordings specifically, Omarosa paused the conversation to explain to Noah why she was going to have to be careful in her responses.
"As of today, Donald Trump has decided to sue me, or to bring litigation against me, to silence me and to not allow me to tell my story," she said. "I have a whole host of attorneys who are telling me to not give Trump the ammunition."
So will Omarosa be silenced? She only talked about recordings already released, and wouldn't even tease any other moments she might have captured, so she appears to be heeding the advice of her attorneys, and the White House can be pleased that their litigation appears to have had the desired affect for now.
Fears for Her Safety?
When asked if she had any fears for her safety over those recordings, Omarosa shut that notion down immediately. Stormy Daniels, who has also spoken out against Trump, and alleges an affair with him, has claimed that a man physically threatened her on behalf of Trump. Trump's legal team has denied all allegations related to Daniels.
"If you see me in a fight with a bear, pray for the bear," Omarosa laughed.