Defending president backfires on former aide


Omarosa Manigault Newman says Donald Trump is a ‘racist’. Photo: Reuters
Omarosa Manigault Newman says Donald Trump is a ‘racist’. Photo: Reuters

For years, Omarosa Manigault Newman stood at Donald Trump’s side, making her deeply unpopular with African-Americans who see her as a sell-out for aligning herself with a US president who has hurled one insult after another at black people.

Her falling out with Mr Trump and her decision to call him a racist as she sells her new book – and him in turn calling her a “dog” – have not been enough for many African-Americans to invite her back into the fold.

Too little, too late, many said.

“Her tell-all mea culpa won’t win her any brownie points with most blacks,” said Earl Ofari Hutchinson, author of the book ‘Why Black Lives Do Matter’. “Their loathing of Omarosa is virtually frozen in stone. She’s still roundly lambasted as a two-bit opportunist, a racial sell-out and an ego-driven hustler.”

Few in the black community rushed to defend Manigault Newman after she wrote a book entitled ‘Unhinged’ about her time in the White House.

It paints a damning picture of Mr Trump, claiming without evidence that tapes exist of him using the n-word as he filmed ‘The Apprentice’ reality series, on which she co-starred.

She has since stepped up her attacks on Mr Trump, telling ‘The Associated Press’ that the president is “a racist, a misogynist, a bigot”. “I want to see this nation united as opposed to divided,” she said. “I don’t want to see a race war, as Trump does.”

The deep hostility that African-Americans harbour for Manigault Newman stems largely from her defence of the president or her public silence as he repeatedly attacked the American citizenship of former president Barack Obama; insulted various minority groups; and described some African nations as “s***hole” countries.

He has also insulted prominent blacks such as Democrat congresswoman Maxine Waters and NBA superstar LeBron James, and said that “many sides” are to blame for the violence at last year’s white nationalist rally in Charlottesville.

Manigault Newman once told US documentary series ‘Frontline’ that “every critic, every detractor will have to bow down under President Trump”.

After associating herself with Mr Trump for more than a decade, she now says he “used” her, calling him a “con who has been masquerading as someone who is actually open to engaging with diverse communities” and is “truly a racist”.

Mr Trump ratcheted up his rhetoric against Manigault Newman on Tuesday. “When you give a crazed, crying lowlife a break, and give her a job at the White House, I guess it just didn’t work out,” he said. “Good work by General Kelly for quickly firing that dog!” John Kelly is the White House chief of staff.

Many condemned the president and his repeated attempts to compare minorities with animals, but there was little defence of Manigault Newman.

“We should not mistake anything that has happened here as to be Omarosa in any way purporting be a benefit to the African-American community,” said Aisha Moodie-Mills, a Democratic strategist.

Irish Independent

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