Administration

Trump trying to stop publication of explosive book about his presidency: report

President Trump is reportedly attempting to stop the publication of "Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House," Michael Wolff's explosive new book about his campaign and presidency.

The Washington Post reported Thursday that Trump's attorneys have sent a cease-and-desist letter to the book's publisher, demanding that Henry Holt & Company not publish the book and apologize to the president.

The letter, according to the Post, demands that Henry Holt & Co. "immediately cease and desist from any further publication, release or dissemination of the book," including excerpts and summaries of the book's contents, and requests a copy of the book in its entirety as they pursue possible legal action.

Trump also reportedly sent a cease-and-desist letter to former White House chief strategist Stephen Bannon late Wednesday, saying that he violated a nondisclosure agreement by speaking with Wolff and accusing him of making "disparaging" and "outright defamatory" statements. A statement from Trump attorney Charles Harder said that the president plans to take legal action against Bannon.

The book, scheduled to be published next week, has sparked a major feud between Trump and Bannon. Several excerpts published Wednesday revealed interviews with Bannon in which he made incendiary comments about Trump and his family.

In one excerpt, Bannon described the 2016 meeting between Donald Trump Jr. and a group of Russians as "treasonous" and "unpatriotic." He also said there was "zero" chance that the president was not aware of the meeting.

"They're going to crack Don Junior like an egg on national TV," Bannon said. The president has repeatedly denied knowledge of the meeting.

Other controversial excerpts from the book include anecdotes about election night, including one in which first lady Melania Trump was in tears, according to Wolff, and that Rupert Murdoch allegedly called the president a "f---ing idiot."

Wolff reportedly recorded many of the 200-some interviews that are included in the book, including his conversation with Bannon.

After excerpts from the book were published, Trump issued a blistering statement denouncing Bannon, saying that the former chief strategist has "lost his mind" and accusing him of "leaking false information to the media to make himself seem far more important than he was."

"Steve Bannon has nothing to do with me or my presidency," Trump said. "When he was fired, he not only lost his job, he lost his mind."

This report was updated at 9:45 a.m.

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