Omarosa releases new secret recordings revealing Trump ‘rambling’ about Steele dossier

Omarosa Manigault Newman is continuing to release controversial alleged recordings of the president and his staff

Chris Riotta
New York
Monday 10 September 2018 21:41 BST
Omarosa releases new tape of secret recordings revealing Donald Trump talking about Steele dossier

A new secret recording released by former Donald Trump aide Omarosa Manigault Newman appears to show the president accusing Hillary Clinton of illegally influencing the 2016 presidential election — nearly a year after his victory.

The former White House aide unveiled her latest recording from her tenure working in the administration on an episode of talk-show The View, claiming the president got bored "very often" and would crash meetings while "rambling from topic to topic".

In the recording, Mr Trump apparently talked about what’s seemingly become one of his favourite topics: the controversial dossier penned by Christopher Steele, and his former opponent.

The dossier, which was originally funded by a conservative group, was later paid for in part by a law firm acting on behalf of Ms Clinton’s campaign as part of its legal opposition research against Mr Trump.

But the president repeatedly claimed the former secretary of state committed "collusion" by funding "the phoney report" in a conversation with Sarah Sanders and Hope Hicks.

“I think Hillary is getting killed with Russia,” he said in the recording, which Ms Newman claimed was from October 2017. “The real Russia story is Hillary and collusion. Somebody told me, Hope, you told me it was $9m they spent on the phoney report".

That accusation led Ms Sanders, the White House press secretary, to correct the president, noting the Clinton campaign spent "closer to six" million in funding the dossier.

Ms Hicks also corrected the president’s claim, adding that “someone just said, ‘[Ms Clinton is] far worse for the country than we thought if she didn’t know her own campaign was spending $9m.”

Still, Mr Trump continued to assert his opponent spent $9m towards the dossier, adding his accusation that she had illegally used a law firm to pay for the research.

“I can’t even believe it,” he continued. “The reason a law firm is because this way you don't have to give any papers. But they found out, it's definitely illegal and it's illegal from a campaign standpoint, from a campaign financing standpoint. So the whole Russia thing, I think seems to have turned around. What do you think, Sarah?”

“Absolutely,” the press secretary can be heard saying in response to Mr Trump.

After the president called Ms Clinton’s acts during the 2016 election illegal, his communications staff was reportedly implored to echo those exact sentiments, according to Ms Newman.

In late October, Ms Sanders slammed Ms Clinton while speaking from the White House press briefing room podium, saying, “What the Clinton campaign did, what the DNC did, was actually money.”

However, there is nothing illegal about conducting opposition research in a US federal election.

In fact, the only campaign finance violations appear to have come from Mr Trump’s campaign, with his longtime attorney and fixer admitting to paying multiple women for their silence about alleged affairs with the president during the election.

A longer clip of the audio recording which Ms Newman shared with MSNBC appeared to show the president and is staff joking about terrorists killing US troops in Niger.

“I was in a toxic relationship with Donald Trump and I regret that I was so complicit,” she said on The View. "You know, Hillary Clinton was robbed, and I was … a co-conspirator in that robbery."

Mr Trump's 2020 re-election campaign has filed arbitration action against Ms Newman for allegedly breaching a confidentiality agreement. The White House did not respond to requests for comment.

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