WIKILEAKS: Trump Biographer Offered Interview Tapes To Clinton Campaign

REUTERS/Mike Segar

Chuck Ross Investigative Reporter
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A Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and author of a biography on Donald Trump offered the Hillary Clinton campaign nine hours of tape recordings from interviews with the Republican presidential candidate.

In March, a representative for the author, Michael D’Antonio, contacted Clinton campaign official Sara Latham offering to share the tapes free of charge.

“Per our conversation, John Manly is close to Michael D’Antonio (who wrote Never Enough about Trump) and Michael wants to meet with the Clinton campaign’s opposition research team,”Janet Keller, a Democratic party fundraiser, wrote in a March 4 email, entitled “Opposition research.”

“He does not want to be paid. And he has 9 hours of taped conversations with Donald Trump,” Keller added in the email, which was hacked from the Gmail account of Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta and released by Wikileaks on Monday.

D’Antonio’s book “Never Enough: Donald Trump and the Pursuit of Success,” was published last year. It draws on hours of interview with Trump and members of his family. According to a New York Times review of the work, Trump cut D’Antonio off after the author interviewed an enemy of Trump’s.

The Times described the work as “an admirably straight­forward, evenhanded but nonetheless damning account of Trump’s life.”

It is unclear from the emails if the Clinton campaign made contact with D’Antonio.

Latham forwarded the email to Clinton communications director Jennifer Palmieri. She asked Latham if she should connect Keller with someone named Christina. Christina Reynolds is the campaign’s deputy communications director and has worked on the campaign’s rapid response operations.

D’Antonio, who won a Pulitzer with a team of reporters when he worked for Newsday, has been highly critical of Trump in recent months.

An Internet search does not reveal any mentions of interview tapes released by D’Antonio or the release of any material from a D’Antonio interview.

But after the release earlier this month of unaired footage from 2005 of Trump speaking in vulgar terms about women, D’Antonio hinted in an interview that other damning tapes could exist.

“It might be more likely that another horrible thing is going to happen for Trump. There’s got to be more video and audio out there,” he said in an interview with Politico.

D’Antonio shared transcripts of some of his interview material with Buzzfeed. In one interview, conducted in 2014, Trump’s son, Donald Trump Jr., told D’Antonio that he admired his father’s “moral conviction” for raising the Obama birther issue in 2011.

Keller did not return a request for comment.

This article has been updated with additional information. 

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