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Former White House communications director Anthony Scaramucci told HuffPost that he felt burned by New Yorker reporter Ryan Lizza, who published a bombshell interview with him, because of their families’ relationship.
“The Lizzas and Scaramuccis have been friends for over 50 years,” Scaramucci said. “My dad knew his dad from construction, and we were building a personal relationship. Most of what I said was humorous and joking. Legally, it may have been on the record, but the spirit of it was off. And he knew that.”
During the interview, Scaramucci went off on people leaking information from the White House and asked Lizza to disclose who had informed him about a dinner Scaramucci had with President Donald Trump and Fox News personalities. Scaramucci eventually zeroed in on Reince Priebus, then the chief of staff, calling him a “paranoid schizophrenic, a paranoiac.”
Scaramucci also unloaded on White House chief strategist Steve Bannon, implying Bannon was interested only in media attention. “I’m not Steve Bannon, I’m not trying to suck my own c—,” Scaramucci told Lizza.
Days after the interview was published, Scaramucci was ousted as communications director.
Lizza defended his decision to publish his phone conversation with Scaramucci.
“I’ve only known Anthony in his capacity as a Trump surrogate and then White House communications director,” Lizza told HuffPost. “We are not and have never been ‘old family friends,’ though I think our fathers knew each other, so maybe that’s what he’s talking about. (The Long Island Italian world in that generation is relatively small.) But again, that would not be a reason to suppress an explosive on-the-record interview.”