- Gallery Books
Omarosa Manigault-Newman, the firebrand communications director of the White House Office of Public Liaison who was abruptly fired in December, has released her tell-all book, “Unhinged: An Insider’s Account of the White House.”
In the book, she recounts her alleged experiences inside the Trump administration and campaign, making startling claims that include an accusation she heard a recording of Trump saying a racial slur.
But the Trump administration is fighting back, with the president leading the charge by downplaying her credibility and calling her names on Twitter.
The relationship between the two former reality TV stars – Trump was the host of NBC’s “The Apprentice” while Omarosa was a contestant – was not always strained. Even in a phone call between Trump and Omarosa shortly after her ouster from the White House, the two appeared to share a compassionate moment with Trump offering his condolences.
“Damn it, I don’t love you leaving at all,” Trump appeared to say on a secretly recorded phone call from Omarosa.
Here’s a timeline of Omarosa’s journey from a star on “The Apprentice,” to her eviction from the White House:
Omarosa Manigault-Newman was involved in politics long before Donald Trump’s presidency.
- The Preachers
Omarosa held various roles in government during the Clinton administration. She answered invitations for Vice President Al Gore and eventually landed a job with the Department of Commerce.
Her former colleagues described her tenure as rocky, including Cheryl Shavers, the former Under Secretary for Technology at the Commerce Department, who said that “she was asked to leave as quickly as possible, she was so disruptive,” according to People.
“One woman wanted to slug her,” Shavers said.
Omarosa made her primetime debut on NBC’s “The Apprentice” in 2004.
She was eliminated from the show by Trump in Week 9 of the first season.
Omarosa continued to make appearances in various “Apprentice” spinoffs. She also starred in her own show “The Ultimate Merger,” in which 12 men, selected by Donald Trump, competed against each other for her favor.
- TV One
Omarosa dipped into politics again in 2015, helping Trump organize meetings with prominent black pastors.
- Jonathan Ernst/Reuters
Omarosa was later appointed as the vice-chair of the National Diversity Coalition for Trump.
She landed a formal role with the Trump campaign as its director of African-American outreach in July 2015, and eventually became a member of his transition team after Trump was elected president.
Source: Mother Jones
After Trump officially assumed office, Omarosa became the communications director for the Office of the Pubic Liaison.
Her tenure in the Trump administration was marked with heated exchanges with other people, including April Ryan, a veteran White House correspondent and a reporter with American Urban Radio Networks.
During a testy exchange with Omarosa near the Oval Office, Ryan said she felt “physically intimidated” by her.
Ryan accused Omarosa of saying she was included in supposed White House “dossiers” of negative information on several journalists.
“She stood right in my face like she was going to hit me,” Ryan said in The Washington Post.
Omarosa denied that she had threatened Ryan and also accused her of hurling insults.
Source: The Washington Post
The new White House chief of staff arrives, and it’s curtains for all the riff-raff — at least temporarily
- REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque
Trump appointed the former four-star Marine Corps General John Kelly to be White House chief of staff, which ultimately signaled the beginning of Omarosa’s departure.
In a White House that was teeming with embarrassing leaks, Kelly began regulating the staffers’s facetime with the president and attempted to limit the scores of unflattering news reports.
Omarosa’s reportedly unfettered access to Trump was curtailed and that set the stage for a more explosive encounter in the weeks ahead.
Source: The New York Times
Omarosa is fired.
Kelly fired Omarosa in January.
Multiple news reports recounted a less-than-amicable departure, with some suggesting she was forcibly escorted off the White House grounds.
April Ryan, the reporter from American Urban Radio Networks who previously had an altercation with her, said sources told her that Omarosa used vulgar language towards Kelly and “tried to get in” Trump’s residence.
Source: American Urban Radio Networks
- Mark Wilson/Getty Images
At the time, Omarosa disputed reports that she was fired.
However, in a secretly recorded conversation between Omarosa and Kelly inside the Situation Room, the chief of staff indicated she was being let go. Omarosa later described the conversation as a veiled threat that if she did not leave, her future career might be in jeopardy.
In another audio file Omarosa later released, Trump suggested he was unaware of her firing, saying “I don’t love you leaving at all.”
- Drew Angerer/Getty Images
Omarosa conducted several interviews and made reality TV show appearances after she was booted from the White House.
In July, publishing company Gallery Books announced she would be releasing the tell-all book, “Unhinged: An Insider’s Account of the White House,” in August.
“Omarosa is finally ready to share her side of the story in this explosive, jaw-dropping account,” the company said.
Omarosa unleashes fire and fury.
- Carlo Allegri/Reuters
In the days leading up to her book’s release, Omarosa teased several audio tapes of her secretly recorded conversations with Trump’s campaign and White House staffers.
She also made several explosive claims about Trump, including an assertion that she heard Trump say the N-word “multiple times” in reference to Kwame Jackson, a black contestant on NBC’s “The Apprentice.”
“It sounded as if he used it every day,” Omarosa told MSNBC host Chris Matthews of the N-word. “It rolled off his mouth.”
Trump and his surrogates fire back.
- Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
The White House and Trump’s surrogates countered Omarosa’s claims with their own media blitz.
On Twitter, Trump said there were “NO TAPES” of him using a racial slur and described his former apprentice as “Wacky and Deranged,” “lowlife,” “crazed,” and “that dog.”
Other Trump associates who were implicated in the secret recordings took swings at their former colleague, calling her “a dog with a bone” and downplayed her claims of having heard a recording of Trump saying racially insensitive remarks.
Katrina Pierson, a Trump campaign official, admitted Omarosa mentioned the tape’s alleged existence in multiple conversations, but said she was forced to “placate” her “obsession” by looking into the claim.
Former campaign aide and regional director at the Department of Housing and Urban Development Lynne Patton echoed Pierson’s remarks.
“There were a lot of times that we talked about this tape because Omarosa was literally obsessed with it,” Patton said on CNN. “She brought it up constantly. It’s clear now that the reason why she did was because she was surreptitiously recording us.”
Trump’s presidential campaign also filed arbitration proceedings in light of her book, claiming she breached a nondisclosure agreement for her role in the White House.
“I’m not going to be bullied by Donald Trump.”
- Thomson Reuters
Following the White House’s denials, Omarosa stood her ground, saying she “will not be silenced” by Trump.
“I will not be intimidated,” Omarosa told The Associated Press. “I’m not going to be bullied by Donald Trump.”