The journalist, biographer and also White residence chronicler top top why we still can’t count the previous president out.

You are watching: Is donald trump really that stupid


photograph by Stephan​ie Diani/New York Times/Redux/Eyevine

Michael Wolff is cashing in in ~ last. After ~ a lengthy career together a newspaper writer (for New York, Vanity Fair and also GQ), the 68-year-old has actually in current years end up being one the a grasp of journalists through a worldwide profile. In 2018 his publication Fire and also Fury shot to the optimal of bestseller perform on both political parties of the Atlantic, giving unparalleled access to the an essential figures behind Donald Trump’s anarchic presidency. Wolff had spent a year drifting in and also out of the White House, seemingly in ~ will, leveraging pre-existing relationships through Trump’s command adviser, Steve Bannon, and also with the chairman himself. The publication sold 1.7 million duplicates in 3 weeks.

Two trump sequels followed: Siege and also Landslide. Now, in an noticeable bid to record the critical of a wave, Wolff has actually released another book: Too Famous, a repertoire of formerly published essays top top the politicians and media moguls that have identified the past 20 years, from Hillary Clinton come Harvey Weinstein. Because that now, Wolff is finished through the previous president. “If I have to write an additional Trump book I would have to shoot myself,” the told me over a video link from new York, where he resides with his partner, Victoria Floethe, and also their 2 young children.

Still, Wolff is convinced that trump will look for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination. Polling argues that if the does, he can be the runaway favourite.


“I would certainly then intend the project to be a fiasco,” Wolff said, pointing to Trump’s two previous bids. In 2016 Trump showed up to have provided up top top his own campaign by respectable – “he had virtually abandoned it, he to be refusing to put any an ext money in” – if in 2020 he was vastly outspent by Joe Biden.

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Wolff is astonished that January’s Capitol Hill riot go not finish Trump’s political career. “There the is, climbing again, indigenous January 6! anyone – his people, his family, the Republican Party – thought, ‘OK, the train has lastly crashed.’” i asked Wolff, who listens to questions with his on handle pressed with each other to type an arch, what might be different this time. “Trump is never ever different,” he said. “It is always the same.”

They spoke for his most recent book, Landslide, and Wolff was no reticent around the encounter: “He’s absolutely stone stupid. Ns think the is precise crazy, off his rocker. However that is an unified with the reality that that is information-free. I median that he yes, really knows nothing around anything. He has almost set out no to permit anybody tell that anything. You have the right to see the in his eye – he has actually no idea what you’re talk about. When you’re with him you go, ‘Oh mine God.’”

It was not constantly so. Video clip clips indigenous the 1980s, when Trump very first flirted v the idea the a presidential run, present someone that is boastful and also possibly malicious, but evidently no stupid. And Wolff has actually in the previous been more generous to the former president: a 2015 essay in Too Famous explains Trump together being, in person, “almost soothing” (“his excessive self-satisfaction rubs off”).