Lots of Trump administration officials were quick on Thursday to scratch their names off the list of potential authors of an unsigned New York Times opinion piece by a member of the so-called resistance working to thwart “reckless decisions” by President Donald Trump.
Among the officials who have spoken out:
“The Vice President puts his name on his Op-Eds. The @nytimes should be ashamed and so should the person who wrote the false, illogical, and gutless op-ed. Our office is above such amateur acts.” — tweet from Jarrod Agen, communications director for Vice President Mike Pence.
"@stevenmnuchin1 is honored to serve @POTUS & the American people. He feels it was irresponsible for @nytimes to print this anonymous piece. Now, dignified public servants are forced to deny being the source. It is laughable to think this could come from the Secretary.” — tweet from Tony Sayegh, spokesman for Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.
“It’s not mine.” — Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, speaking at a news conference in India.
“No.” — U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley, responding to a shouted question on whether she was the anonymous author.
“Speculation that The New York Times op-ed was written by me or my Principal Deputy is patently false. We did not. From the beginning of our tenure, we have insisted that the entire IC remain focused on our mission to provide the President and policymakers with the best intelligence possible.” — statement by Dan Coats, director of national intelligence.
“I did not write and am thoroughly appalled by this op-ed. I couldn’t be prouder of our work at Commerce and of @POTUS.” — tweet by Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross.
“I am not the author of the New York Times OpEd, nor do I agree with its characterizations. Hiding behind anonymity and smearing the President of the United States does not make you an ‘unsung hero’, it makes you a coward, unworthy of serving this Nation.” — tweet by Energy Secretary Rick Perry.
“It was not his op-ed.” — Thomas Crosson, spokesman for Defense Secretary Jim Mattis.
“Secretary Nielsen is focused on leading the men and women of DHS and protecting the homeland - not writing anonymous and false opinion pieces for the New York Times. These types of political attacks are beneath the Secretary and the Department’s mission.” — Tyler Houlton, press secretary for Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen.
“It was not him.” — Caitlin Oakley, spokeswoman for Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar.
“He didn’t write it. ... Acting Administrator Wheeler supports President Trump 100% and is honored to serve in his cabinet, he also believes whoever wrote the op-ed should resign.” — John Konkus, spokesman for Andrew Wheeler, the acting administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency.
“Secretary DeVos is not a Washington insider and does not play Washington insider games. She has the courage of her convictions and signs her opinions. She is not the author.” — Liz Hill, spokeswoman for Education Secretary Betsy DeVos.
“Neither Secretary Wilkie nor anyone else at VA wrote the op-ed.” — Curt Cashour, spokesman for Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert Wilkie.
“The Secretary didn’t write the op-ed.” — Raffi Williams, spokesman for Housing Secretary Ben Carson.
“No to all of your questions.” — Michawn Rich, spokeswoman for Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, when asked whether Perdue had any role in the column or knew who wrote it.
When asked if the op-ed writer was Attorney General Jeff Sessions, a Justice Department spokesman referred The Associated Press to White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders’ Thursday statement in which she calls the writer an “anonymous coward” and “gutless loser” and says the people who work for the president “stand united together and fully support” him.
“No.” — White House counsel Don McGahn, when asked outside the Supreme Court confirmation hearing for Brett Kavanaugh if he wrote the op-ed.
“For those who have inquired, this is to confirm that Secretary Chao is not the author of the op-ed.” — Department of Transportation communications office on Secretary Elaine Chao.
“Amb Huntsman: Come to find, when you’re serving as the U.S. envoy in Moscow, you’re an easy target on all sides. Anything sent out by me would have carried my name. An early political lesson I learned: never send an anonymous op-ed.” — tweet from Andrea Kalan, spokeswoman at the U.S. Embassy in Moscow, quoting U.S. Ambassador to Russia Jon Huntsman.
“I am not author of the anonymous @nytimes op-ed. @realDonaldTrump has a clear governing vision for the country and his record of results is remarkable. I am proud to serve as a member of President Trump’s @Cabinet to advocate on behalf of America’s 30 million small businesses.” — tweet from Linda McMahon, administrator of the Small Business Administration.