Fire and Fury author Michael Wolff has been challenged in some interviews about his factual errors (most notably by Meghan McCain), but this morning CNN’s Michael Smerconish challenged him on another issue entirely: whether he falsely represented himself to gain more access.
Smerconish brought up something he said in another interview about saying “what was ever necessary to get the story” and asked him directly, “Did you ever misrepresent your objective or your feelings about the president?”
Wolff said he did not and defended the way he presented himself to the Trump Team and the White House. At one point he told Smerconish, “It sounds like you have something on your mind here.”
Smerconish noted how it seems like Wolff positioned himself as an ally of the White House offering to humanize the President and offer a more sympathetic portrait than the rest of the media.
Wolff insisted, “If I could write a book in which I found that the President was, contrary to all opinions, a potential success, I would have been delighted to write that book.”
Smerconish asked Wolff about his access to the President and this exchange followed:
SMERCONISH: From the paper trail that I’ve seen, and I’ve tried to become more knowledgable in anticipation of having you here, it doesn’t seem like there was any interview you were afforded for the book per se…
WOLFF: Okay, I think that we should point out that someone in the White House is obviously giving you emails that I sent, which is perfectly fine, but the White House has been on a concerted attack on me since this book came out. By the way, a totally incompetent attack… You are now doing the job of the White House, just so everybody knows that.
Smerconish said he read the book and that he has serious, legitimate questions, as a reader.
Wolff accused Smerconish of being fed emails by Hope Hicks, saying again, “You’re doing the work of the White House to discredit this book! The White House wants to discredit this book.”
Towards the end of the interview, Smerconish offered Wolff the last word, and Wolff got a little ticked off when he, well, didn’t quite get it.
Watch above, via CNN.
[image via screengrab]