By Emily Tillett CBS News August 14, 2018, 12:38 PM Omarosa on why she was recording Trump campaign officials: "In Trump world, everyone lies"
Last Updated Aug 14, 2018 12:51 PM EDT
After releasing a series of damaging recordings of conversations with White House officials and President Trump, former White House staffer and "Apprentice" star Omarosa Manigault Newman said she needed to "protect herself" during the 2016 campaign and in the White House because in "Trump world, everyone lies."
"Everyone says one thing one day, and they change their story the next day," Omarosa said on "CBS This Morning" on Tuesday.
Her comments come after the release of a new recording in which Trump campaign staffers, including Lynne Patton, then-assistant to Eric Trump, campaign spokesperson Katrina Pierson and campaign communications director Jason Miller, discuss how to deal with the fallout from the potential release of a tape where then-candidate Trump had used the N-word. Audio of that call was obtained by CBS News overnight.
"I wanted to have this type of documentation so that in the event I found myself in this position where they're questioning my credibility, saying they never discussed the N-word tape, they never heard these accusations, the president never heard these accusations when in fact this tape proves they discussed it at high levels of the Trump campaign," Omarosa said.
"The moment we started talking about the N-word tape I was surprised no one doubted that he said it, and in fact they worked to try to suppress this tape for so long and everyone says he said it," she added.
The release of the recording comes as Omarosa is promoting her memoir, "Unhinged," published by a division of Simon & Schuster, which is a division of CBS. She said of the book's authenticity, "If you see it in quotes, it can be verified, corroborated and it's well-documented."
Pierson, appearing on Fox News Monday before the latest tape's release, denied that she had heard from sources that there was a tape of Mr. Trump using the racial slur or that she was asked to "put it to bed."
"'Katrina had heard from her sources that the tape was of trump using the N-word. Someone she knew who knew political strategist Frank Luntz told her that Luntz had heard it. Lynne reported that she asked trump about it on the plane specifically if it was possible that such a tape might exist and he said no. Then she (Katrina) asked him what he wanted her to do and he said put it to bed. Katrina cursed and said 'he said it.' Did that happen?," asked Fox's Ed Henry.
"No, Ed. That did not happen. Sounds like she is writing a script for a movie," she responded.
Pierson and Patton later provided a joint statement to CBS News saying that "no one ever denied the existence" of conversations about an alleged N-word tape, but that "Omarosa was obsessed with it."
The statement goes on to say that Trump campaign officials "never had a call" confirming that anyone had directly heard Mr. Trump "use derogatory language on this alleged tape."
In an updated statement, Pierson maintained that she "never organized a conference call with Jason Miller to confirm Mr. Trump said anything." She added, "That discussion was nothing other than sifting through unconfirmed rumors regarding the Apprentice tape and the transcript supports my statement. Omarosa fabricated the story by conflating numerous discussions."
Mr. Trump also denied the existence of any such tapes of him using the N-word, and called the former staffer "wacky", "deranged" and a "lowlife."
Mr. Trump appeared to respond shortly after Omarosa's appearance on CBS, tweeting, "When you give a crazed, crying lowlife a break, and give her a job at the White House, I guess it just didn't work out. Good work by General Kelly for quickly firing that dog!"
Omarosa told CBS that she found it "ironic" that such high-level campaign and White House staffers were reacting in such a manner. "He's tweeting at me, saying he never said it, he discussed this on Trump Force One on the campaign," she said.
Omarosa said that she had not heard the alleged recording of the president using the slur while she was working in the White House. She said if she had, she would have "left immediately." The former reality star also said even if the president had used the slur, it wouldn't impact his base.
"The sad thing is as we saw with 'Access Hollywood,' it probably won't impact his base, I think their support is baked-in, but I think it does expose him for the racist that he is," she said, adding that the "truth matters."
"I believe that we should keep the truth as a priority," she said. "This administration, they struggle with the truth, and they construct their own reality deceiving the American people."
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