In 2016, in his shock and outrage over Donald Trump actually winning the election against his hand-picked successor, former President Barack Obama and a top aide cooked up a scheme to “destroy” the president-elect around Christmas, according to a new book.
Former New York Times Magazine editor Edward Klein calls out Obama’s plot to damage the Trump presidency and have the man himself impeached in All Out War: The Plot to Destroy Trump, which goes on sale Tuesday.
In an excerpt he shared with the Washington Examiner, Klein described a “Christmastime” dinner when national security adviser Susan Rice offered plans to “unmask, or disclose, the names of several Trump campaign associates who were mentioned or whose conversations were captured in intelligence intercepts of Russian officials.”
Klein, who has written several insider accounts critical of the Clintons and Obamas, said the former president knew of Rice’s efforts to disclose the names, in hopes that they would be leaked to the media and spark an investigation.
“He knew Rice wanted to encourage leaks to the Washington Post and the New York Times accusing Trump and his campaign of colluding with Russian President Vladimir Putin in the American presidential election,” Klein wrote. “If Rice’s plot succeeded — that is, if it could be proved that Trump had colluded with Putin during the campaign or, later, if it could be proved that he had tried to prevent an investigation into such collusion — Trump would likely face charges of impeachment.”
Klein further revealed that even Obama didn’t know that his closest aide, Valerie Jarrett, was the mastermind behind the scheme to destroy the incoming president. In the book, Klein uses an unnamed source, whom he says is Jarrett’s “friend.”
When she testified before Congress about her actions, Rice denied having leaked Trump campaign and associated names.
Klein wrote how then-First Lady Michelle Obama initially raised concerns that the effort was clearly a political plot to “sandbag” Trump.
Worried that the leaks of Democratic National Committee emails, which embarrassed the Clinton campaign, came from Russian sources, Rice reportedly said she wanted to make sure the alleged links to the Trump campaign and Russia became public before Trump came to office.
“She said she was afraid that once Trump got into the White House, the evidence of collusion would be covered up or destroyed,” wrote Klein.
At that point, during the dinner, the former first lady reportedly warned that the plot could “bite us in the ass.”
Klein’s book describes Obama as a man who was torn: “Most of the time he had to choose between the lesser of two evils. This was an example of such a dilemma. It was clearly unethical to use illegal leaks to sabotage Trump. But Barack could argue that it was his patriotic to duty to draw attention to the possibility that the Trump campaign had conspired with the Russians to influence the outcome of an American election.”
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