A year and a half since what was perceived in Donald Trump‘s camp as BuzzFeed‘s explosive takedown of The Donald in which they painted him as a phony candidate, the site comes out with a Part II.
This time it’s a takedown of Trump’s closest confidantes.
As the result of Trump’s “special counsel” Michael Cohen threatening The Daily Beast‘s Tim Mak within an inch of his bank account, BuzzFeed political reporter McKay Coppins went to work on Trump’s inner circle, painting members as “bullies, thugs and goons.”
Trump’s main legal goon Michael Cohen went after The Daily Beast because of a story Mak wrote about a 20-year-old deposition in which Ivana Trump described being violently raped by her then-hubby, Trump. She adamantly discounted The Daily Beast‘s account, saying it has no merit. Trump would make a great president!
Coppins returned to the well of time he spent with Trump and his aides last year — first on the snowy roads of Manchester, New Hampshire, and then at his Mar-a-Lago resort in Palm Beach filled with apparently the sexiest wait staff on the planet.
In Part II, Coppins paints a pretty vivid picture of Sam Nunberg, the Trump aide that was canned because he arranged the interview for the 2014 BuzzFeed profile. (There are serious doubts that Nunberg was ever really fired. Nunberg was always in the fold whether officially working for Trump or not.)
Nunberg is, no doubt, a character.
“A 32-year-old New York native who sported tailored suits and double-Windsor knots, Nunberg had a disarming way of working to exude a macho, Trumpian aura of authority, before inevitably slipping back into his own good-natured neurosis.”
Coppins portrayed Nunberg as a kid in a candy store type of guy, starry-eyed at the ritzy lifestyle he was enjoying while working for Trump.
“One minute, he was bragging about the ‘beyond decadent’ lifestyle he had grown accustomed to while working for Trump; the next, he was marveling at Mar-a-Lago with the wide-eyed wonder of a little boy on his first trip to Disney World. More than once, he confidently informed me of his intentions to chat up a hostess or waitress who he believed was sending him signals, only to fumble through a brief, clumsy conversation with the women before bowing out. I found the routine endearing — but inside The Donald’s political orbit, it seemed clear that such revelations of vulnerability were not encouraged or rewarded.”
Nunberg may not be so green when it comes to an opulent lifestyle. He has attended private school his whole life — a Yeshiva prep school in Manhattan that set his parents back $30,000 a year — from the time he was 3 to 18. His parents are lawyers.
Coppins’ Part II reports that after the profile ran and Nunberg was obviously in scalding hot water, he asked Coppins to help him take Michael Cohen down.
Nunberg vehemently protested this point in an interview with The Mirror.
“Once again McCay is writing fiction,” Nunberg wrote by email and then read aloud by phone. “I never took McCay’s phone call after the story came out. He wishes.”
On the topic of Michael Cohen: “I have known Michael Cohen for over five years and consider him a friend. Michael is a talented lawyer, deal maker and provides steadfast top counsel to Mr. Trump. I have depended on Michael for advice many times over the years. He is a confidant.”
Nunberg dug into the very premise of Coppins’ 2014 profile, which was that Trump would never run for president.
Sounding just like Trump when he makes fun of Chuck “Sleepy Eyes” Todd, he cracked on Coppins’ upcoming book.
“By the way — how does McKay’s ‘punditry’ and predictions look now with the state of the Republican presidential race?” he asked.
“McKay is right about one thing — my suits are tailored. It is a shame no one will read about them because McKay will not sell a book.”