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White House aides tried to get Trump to fact-check his tweets: Woodward book
Top officials inside the Trump administration tried to persuade President Trump to hold his tweets for fact-checking before publishing them,, according to veteran journalist Bob Woodward's new book, "Fear," as first reported by USA Today.
Former communications director Hope Hicks led a group of White House aides who tried to create a committee to vet Trump's tweets after he attacked MSNBC's host Mika Brzezinski's appearance in June 2017.
In the tweet, Trump said Brzezinski was "bleeding badly from a face-lift" while attending his Mar-a-Lago resort around New Year's eve, a comment which led to a wave of criticism.
"It's not politically helpful," Hicks told Trump, according to Woodward's book. "You can't just be a loose cannon on Twitter. You're getting killed by a lot of this stuff. You're shooting yourself in the foot. You're making big mistakes."
Hicks, along with former staff secretary Rob Porter, former chief economic adviser Gary Cohn, and social media director Dan Scavino, reportedly also suggested to Trump that they would draft tweets they believed the president would like.
"If the president had an idea for a tweet, he would write it down or get one of them in and they would vet it," Woodward wrote of the proposed idea, USA Today reported. "Was it factually accurate? Was it spelled correctly? Did it make sense? Did it serve his needs?"
The newspaper reported that Trump replied "I guess you're right" multiple times. But Trump never followed their wishes and continued to do what he wanted, Woodward wrote.
The details about White House aides' attempts to rein in Trump's tweets are one of many revelations included in Woodward's new book - one that paints a portrait of an administration increasingly at odds with the president's impulses.
The White House and Trump have aggressively pushed back against Woodward's reporting. White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said the book was full of fabricated stories.
On Tuesday, Cohn and Porter released statements calling into question the accuracy of the book. Woodward has continued to stand by his reporting.