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

President TrumpDonald John TrumpThe Guardian slams Trump over comments about assault on reporter Five takeaways from the first North Dakota Senate debate Watchdog org: Tillerson used million in taxpayer funds to fly throughout US MORE 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.

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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.Donald (Don) John TrumpElection Countdown: Florida Senate fight resumes after hurricane | Cruz softens ObamaCare attacks | GOP worries Trump will lose suburban women | Latest Senate polls | Rep. Dave Brat gets Trump's 'total endorsement' | Dem candidates raise record B Eric Trump: Trump Org has 'zero investments' in Russia or Saudi Arabia West Virginia sports stars back Manchin in new ad MORE 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 TrumpMelania TrumpTrump submits 2017 federal income tax returns Overnight Health Care — Presented by Purdue Pharma — Trump officials ratchet up fight over drug pricing | McConnell says Republicans could try again on ObamaCare repeal | Dems go on offense against GOP lawsuit Melania Trump meets with families affected by opioid withdrawal in newborns MORE 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 BannonStephen (Steve) Kevin BannonBannon: Timing of Nikki Haley's departure 'horrific' Oversight Dems call for probe into citizenship question on 2020 census House Intelligence Committee to vote Friday on releasing dozens of Russia probe transcripts MORE 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.