The Trump administration reportedly sent a cease and desist letter to former White House Chief Strategist Stephen Bannon demanding that he refrain from making any “disparaging” remarks about President Donald Trump and his family.
According to ABC News, the cease and desist demand comes after excerpts from Michael Wolff’s new book, “Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House,” were published Wednesday in New York Magazine, causing an uproar at the White House.
The president’s attorney, Charles J. Harder of the firm Harder Mirell & Abrams LLP, said in a statement, “This law firm represents President Donald J. Trump and Donald J. Trump for President, Inc. On behalf of our clients, legal notice was issued today to Stephen K. Bannon, that his actions of communicating with author Michael Wolff regarding an upcoming book give rise to numerous legal claims including defamation by libel and slander, and breach of his written confidentiality and non-disparagement agreement with our clients. Legal action is imminent.”
“You [Bannon] have breached the Agreement by, among other things, communicating with author Michael Wolff about Mr. Trump, his family members, and the Company, disclosing Confidential Information to Mr. Wolff, and making disparaging statements and in some cases outright defamatory statements to Mr. Wolff about Mr. Trump, his family members, and the Company, knowing that they would be included in Mr. Wolff’s book and publicity surrounding the marketing and sale of his book,” the attorney wrote in a letter to Bannon.
During the campaign, then candidate-Trump had all of his staff sign a non-disclosure agreement that, according to sources, forced them to “refrain from any disparaging comments against the candidate, his family or the Trump campaign and organization,” ABC News reported.
In the published excerpts, Bannon, among other things, said that Donald Trump Jr.’s meeting with a Russian lawyer was “unpatriotic” and “treasonous.” He also said that there was “zero” chance that the president didn’t know about the meeting.
President Trump, himself, responded to the book’s excerpts in a statement, saying, “Steve pretends to be at war with the media, which he calls the opposition party, yet he spent his time at the White House leaking false information to the media to make himself seem far more important than he was.”
He also said that “Steve Bannon has nothing to do with me or my presidency,” Trump said. “When he was fired, he not only lost his job, he lost his mind.”