Talk of Bob Woodward's new tome, just like all the recently released political books, came and went quickly.
President Trump has deemed "Fear: Trump in the White House" "a total fraud," a "work of fiction," and "totally discredited." Some of the book's most salacious quotes have been roundly denied by the people who supposedly said them. And conservative websites, including The Daily Wire, have cast some doubts on Woodward's methodology.
So with the waning publicity for the book, Woodward took to the airwaves to re-hype it. Appearing on CBS (his book was published by Simon & Schuster, a division of CBS) on Thursday, Woodward tried his best to hawk his book.
The Washington Post writer made famous during the Watergate scandal was asked if he would release the interview tapes he claims to have. "Well, if somebody really wants to challenge me, of course. Of course. But I — again, I've made agreements with people that these sources are going to remain confidential."
So, you've got to take what he says as a matter of faith. Of course, liberals will more than happily do that, which is why the book is selling well (at least this week; it hit the shelves Tuesday).
But there was more pushback on the claims Woodward makes in the book. While Woodward wrote that the Trump administration is unraveling, FBI Director Christopher Wray said he has "not seen a 'nervous breakdown' of executive power."
"I have also not read Mr. Woodward's book, and I'm not sure whether I'll ever find time," Wray added.
Woodward slapped back, saying Wray's "experience is limited with Trump."
"I spent over a year on this. I have literally hundreds of hours of tapes with people who were there. If you've looked at the book, they're very specific incidents. And it is a kind of — it opens the window," Woodward said.
Woodward also said pushback from people quoted in the book, like White House Chief of Staff John Kelly and Defense Secretary James Mattis, is expected.
"Look, going back to the Nixon case, any of these books you're going to have what I call this 'survival denial' by somebody who wants to be politically connected with the president. And that's fine," Woodward said. "But as the great editor of The Washington Post Ben Bradlee said, the truth emerges. And it does. And I've done this time and time again where you get denials."