Omarosa releases audio of Trump campaign’s job offer said to be in exchange for her silence
Former White House aide Omarosa Manigault Newman on Thursday released an audio recording to back up her claim that President Trump’s campaign offered her a high-paying job to stay quiet about her tenure inside the administration.
MSNBC aired the recording, in which the president’s daughter-in-law Lara Trump can be heard offering Manigault Newman a job, a day after a news report suggested the fired aide might go public with damaging information about the president.
In a snippet of audio, Lara Trump, who is working on the president’s reelection bid, offers Manigault Newman a $180,000 annual salary, matching what she was making as an aide to the president. Lara Trump also expresses concern about what Manigault Newman might say, referencing the New York Times report suggesting the former reality television star would eventually air her dirty laundry.
“She made it very clear that if I joined this campaign that I would have to be quiet,” Manigault Newman said Thursday. “I saw this as an attempt to buy my silence, to censor me and to pay me off, $15,000 per month by the campaign.”
In the recording, Lara Trump indicated that Manigault Newman’s only responsibility would be to occasionally attend events and make speeches, and that she could continue to live in Washington instead of New York, where the campaign is headquartered.
In a statement released shortly after Manigault Newman’s appearance on MSNBC, Lara Trump called the recording “a fraud” and, while not explicitly denying that the campaign’s job offer was contingent on a confidentiality agreement, portrayed the outreach after Manigault Newman’s firing as a matter of compassion for a friend.
“My entire family was concerned for her because we had no idea about the basis of her dismissal,” Lara Trump said. “We still wanted her on our team because we cared so much about her personally.”
Lara Trump added that she has been “shocked and saddened by her betrayal and violation on a deeply personal level. I hope it’s all worth it for you, Omarosa, because some things you just can’t put a price on.”
The repeat “Apprentice” contestant, now in the midst of a publicity blitz surrounding the release of a tell-all book about her relationship with the president, threatened to continue to release additional recordings of her conversations with White House aides.
“I’m going to go toe-to-toe with him,” Manigault Newman told MSNBC’s Craig Melvin. “Everything he throws at me. Believe me, my tapes are much better than theirs.”
Melvin pressed her to corroborate her explosive charge, made in an MSNBC interview on Tuesday but not in her book, that Trump knew in advance about the impending release by WikiLeaks of hacked emails from Hillary Clinton’s campaign chief and others aimed at hurting her candidacy. Manigault Newman demurred.
“There’s some things I can’t even talk about,” she said.
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