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The Trump Tapes: 20 interviews that show why he is an unparalleled danger

Washington Post – Bob Woodward: “…In the “The Trump Tapes,” I share my personal reporting journey through the eight hours of interviews. I provide commentary at more than 200 points in the audiobook, explicitly offering my own reactions, hesitations, conclusions, and explanations of my method of gathering and confirming information. When Trump came on the political scene in 2015, he was immediately a big presence, regularly making outrageous statements. He seized the attention of the media and gave regular interviews before and after he was elected president. But for someone who talked so much, he insulated himself from long and sustained questioning. In our extended conversations, I was able to press him for prolonged periods and with dozens of follow-up questions. Trump agreed that all of our interviews were on the record and could be recorded. “When did it become yes?” I asked about his decision to run for president. On his handling of the coronavirus, “What grade would you give yourself?” And about the presidency, “What have you learned about yourself?” In all, I asked him more than 600 questions.

I am also releasing “The Trump Tapes” for the historical archive. The content of the interviews was comprehensively quoted in my 2020 book, “Rage,” and some of the audio of the most dramatic news released. But the full exchange amplifies an understanding of Trump and the unique concentration of power in the presidency…In 2020, I ended ‘Rage’ with the following sentence: ‘When his performance as president is taken in its entirety, I can only reach one conclusion: Trump is the wrong man for the job.’ Two years later, I realize I didn’t go far enough. Trump is an unparalleled danger. When you listen to him on the range of issues from foreign policy to the virus to racial injustice, it’s clear he did not know what to do. Trump was overwhelmed by the job. He was largely disconnected from the needs and leadership expectations of the public and his absolute self-focus became the presidency…‘The Trump Tapes’ leaves no doubt that after four years in the presidency, Trump has learned where the levers of power are, and full control means installing absolute loyalists in key Cabinet and White House posts. The record now shows that Trump has led — and continues to lead — a seditious conspiracy to overturn the 2020 election, which in effect is an effort to destroy democracy.”

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