Bob Woodward says he would release book interview tapes if strongly challenged

President Trump strongly criticized Bob Woodward’s new book, “Fear: Trump in the White House,” as “a total fraud,” “work of fiction” and “totally discredited.” But Woodward said he drew from hundreds of hours of interviews for his book, which is published by Simon & Schuster, a division of CBS. The book depicts a chaotic White House with details from participants and witnesses to the Trump administration.

Asked whether he would release any of the interview tapes, Woodward told “CBS This Morning” on Thursday: “Well, if somebody really wants to challenge me, of course. Of course. But I — again, I’ve made agreements with people that these sources are going to remain confidential.” 

  • Bob Woodward’s “Fear” — some top takeaways

In the book, Woodward described a “nervous breakdown” in the administration. In an interview with “CBS This Morning” co-host Norah O’Donnell, FBI Director Christopher Wray told her he has “not seen a ‘nervous breakdown’ of executive power.”

“I have also not read Mr. Woodward’s book, and I’m not sure whether I’ll ever find time,” Wray added.

Woodward responded to Wray, saying, “His experience is limited with Trump.” Wray was confirmed as FBI director in August 2017.

“I spent over a year on this. I have literally hundreds of hours of tapes with people who were there. If you’ve looked at the book, they’re very specific incidents. And it is a kind of — it opens the window,” Woodward said.

Various Trump administration officials have come forward to deny certain accounts in the story, including White House Chief of Staff John Kelly and Defense Secretary James Mattis. Woodward addressed the various push-back he’s getting.

“Look, going back to the Nixon case, any of these books you’re going to have what I call this ‘survival denial’ by somebody who wants to be politically connected with the president. And that’s fine,” Woodward said. “But as the great editor of the Washington Post, Ben Bradlee said, the truth emerges. And it does. And I’ve done this time and time again where you get denials. Oh, ‘Nixon and Kissinger did not pray on the eve of Nixon’s resignation.'” 

Watch the video above to see Woodward’s response to the recent ousting of “60 Minutes” executive producer Jeff Fager. 

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