Good Wednesday afternoon. THE WOLFF BOOK — WITH FRIENDS LIKE THESE … “Trump Tower meeting with Russians ‘treasonous’, Bannon says in explosive book,” by the Guardian’s David Smith: “Donald Trump’s former chief strategist Steve Bannon has described the Trump Tower meeting between the president’s son and a group of Russians during the 2016 election campaign as ‘treasonous’ and ‘unpatriotic’, according to an explosive new book seen by the Guardian. Bannon, speaking to author Michael Wolff, warned that the investigation into alleged collusion with the Kremlin will focus on money laundering and predicted: ‘They’re going to crack Don Junior like an egg on national TV.’ …
“The meeting was revealed by the New York Times in July last year, prompting Trump Jr to say no consequential material was produced. Soon after, Wolff writes, Bannon remarked mockingly: ‘The three senior guys in the campaign thought it was a good idea to meet with a foreign government inside Trump Tower in the conference room on the 25th floor – with no lawyers. They didn’t have any lawyers. … Even if you thought that this was not treasonous, or unpatriotic, or bad s***, and I happen to think it’s all of that, you should have called the FBI immediately.’ …
“Bannon has criticised Trump’s decision to fire Comey. In Wolff’s book, obtained by the Guardian ahead of publication from a bookseller in New England, he suggests White House hopes for a quick end to the Mueller investigation are gravely misplaced. ‘You realise where this is going,’ he is quoted as saying. ‘This is all about money laundering. Mueller chose [senior prosecutor Andrew] Weissmann first and he is a money-laundering guy. Their path to f***ing Trump goes right through Paul Manafort, Don Jr and Jared Kushner … It’s as plain as a hair on your face.'” http://bit.ly/2E1NUPj
— The Drudge headline: “Bannon Turns” … HOW WILL TRUMP REACT to Bannon going after his child and son in law?
— HMM … ! … NBC’S PETER ALEXANDER (@PeterAlexander): SIREN: ‘Steve Bannon was certain that after the (July 2016 Trump Tower) meeting, Trump, Jr. had taken the participants to see his father,’ per excerpts from new Michael Wolff book, ‘Fire & Fury.’ Trump has claimed he was unaware any meeting with Russians took place.” … (@PeterAlexander): “NEW: Here’s the Bannon quote regarding the July 2016 Trump Tower meeting: ‘The chance that Don Jr. did not walk these Jumos up to his father’s office of the 26th floor is zero,’ per “Fire & Fury.” (pg. 255)”.
MORE FROM WOLFF in NEW YORK MAG — “Donald Trump Didn’t Want to Be President: One year ago: the plan to lose, and the administration’s shocked first days”: “Shortly after 8 p.m. on Election Night, when the unexpected trend — Trump might actually win — seemed confirmed, Don Jr. told a friend that his father, or DJT, as he calls him, looked as if he had seen a ghost. Melania was in tears — and not of joy. … There was, in the space of little more than an hour, in Steve Bannon’s not unamused observation, a befuddled Trump morphing into a disbelieving Trump and then into a horrified Trump. But still to come was the final transformation: Suddenly, Donald Trump became a man who believed that he deserved to be, and was wholly capable of being, the president of the United States.”
AND DETAILS ON THE FIRST DAYS: “Trump did not enjoy his own inauguration. He was angry that A-level stars had snubbed the event, disgruntled with the accommodations at Blair House, and visibly fighting with his wife, who seemed on the verge of tears. Throughout the day, he wore what some around him had taken to calling his golf face: angry and pissed off, shoulders hunched, arms swinging, brow furled, lips pursed.
“The first senior staffer to enter the White House that day was Bannon. On the inauguration march, he had grabbed 32-year-old Katie Walsh, the newly appointed deputy chief of staff, and together they had peeled off to inspect the now-vacant West Wing. The carpet had been shampooed, but little else had changed. It was a warren of tiny offices in need of paint, the décor something like an admissions office at a public university. Bannon claimed the nondescript office across from the much grander chief of staff’s suite and immediately requisitioned the whiteboards on which he intended to chart the first 100 days of the Trump administration. He also began moving furniture out. The point was to leave no room for anyone to sit. Limit discussion. Limit debate. This was war. Plus more on Rupert Murdoch calling Trump a “f***ing idiot”, Bannon’s meeting with Roger Ailes, Trump’s lunch with Mika and Joe, Ivanka musing running for president, the White House power struggles and more http://nym.ag/2E265V4
— Part of the excerpt says Trump questioned who John Boehner was. But Trump has tweeted about Boehner on multiple occasions, and Jake and James Hohmann reported back in 2013 that the pair had golfed together. http://politi.co/2ERM4Sj ALSO: Boehner has been in touch with this White House.