When lawyers for Donald Trump sent the publisher of Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House a cease-and-desist demand, the CEO of Macmillan sent a memo to employees explaining why he decided to not only resist the intimidation but move up the publishing date. It is a stirring defense of free speech.
We cannot stand silent. We will not allow any president to achieve by intimidation what our Constitution precludes him or her from achieving in court. We need to respond strongly for Michael Wolff and his book, but also for all authors and all their books, now and in the future. And as citizens we must demand that President Trump understand and abide by the First Amendment of our Constitution.
Read the full text of the memo below the fold.
Stephen Miller defended his boss, President Trump, Sunday morning from claims made in the book Fire and Fury by Michael Wolff. Miller is, as you’d imagine, full of invective against the tell-all.
But Miller may also be smarting from the description Wolff offers of him in the book:
Miller, a fifty-five-year-old trapped in a thirty-two-year-old’s body, was a former Jeff Sessions staffer brought on to the Trump campaign for his political experience. Except, other than being a dedicated far-right conservative, it was unclear what particular abilities accompanied Miller’s political views. He was supposed to be a speechwriter, but if so, he seemed restricted to bullet points and unable to construct sentences. He was supposed to be a policy adviser but knew little about policy. He was supposed to be the house intellectual but was militantly unread. He was supposed to be a communications specialist, but he antagonized almost everyone.
— Wolff, Michael. Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House (pp. 64-65). Henry Holt and Co. Kindle Edition.
CNN’s Jake Tapper got fed up with Miller’s refusal to directly answer or even address the questions he was asked in their interview:
The publication and incredibly brisk sales of Michael Wolff’s book “Fire and Fury” seem to have really gotten under President Trump’s skin.
“Fire and Fury” has upended the administration in a way no scandal previously has. Insiders report the White House has turned into a “three-ring circus” and caused a very ugly public split between the president and his former top strategist Steve Bannon.
The book describes Mr. Trump as being terrified of dementia, calling him “a man whose many neuroses included a horror of forgetfulness or senility,” and his tweets in response to the questions being raised about his mental fitness seem to bear that out.