Haberman Says White House Felt Comey’s Book ‘Could Have Been Worse,’ Doesn’t Seem Like ‘There’s a Ton of News in It’

• April 15, 2018 10:51 am


New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman said Sunday the White House isn't particularly fazed by former FBI Director James Comey's new book, adding it doesn't seem like "there's a ton of news in it."

"From their perspective, this was not as bad as they thought it was going to be," Haberman said on ABC's "This Week." "I have obviously not read the book. Does not seem like there's a ton of news in it, based on what I've seen … They felt like it could have been worse."

Comey's book A Higher Loyalty: Truth, Lies and Leadership, recounts his interactions with President Donald Trump, who he blasts as "untethered to truth" and compares to a mob boss. Out April 17, the book reportedly does not offer major revelations on the Russia investigation, which Comey led before Trump fired him last May.

"The View" co-host Meghan McCain criticized an excerpt of Comey's book where he noted his hands were larger than the president's when they first met, saying it belied his portrayal of himself as a "boy scout."

"Pretty salacious, gossipy things to be putting in a book that I thought was supposed to be about just clearing the truth on this," McCain said.

McCain said Comey's book felt more like Fire and Fury, gossip author Michael Wolff's inside look at the administration released in January. It came under criticism for its hazy sourcing and mistakes, in addition to Wolff's unsubstantiated implication that United Nations ambassador Nikki Haley was sleeping with Trump.

Haberman added the White House felt things like Comey's attack on Trump's hand size actually helped Trump.

"In terms of Comey and in terms of Fire and Fury … these are books that don't offer a whole lot of new information," she said. "They affirm what we have seen over the course of time … I don't know that it changes [anything]."

Comey's book has come under heavy fire from the GOP, and Trump himself has tweeted several attacks at Comey, calling him a "slime ball" and the worst FBI Director in the bureau's history.