It looks like Donald Trump’s argument over the size of his inauguration crowd is going to plague us forever. In an excerpt from Chris Whipple’s book, “The Gatekeepers: How the White House Chiefs of Staff Define Every Presidency,” Reince Priebus describes how the former Celebrity Apprentice host had a screaming fit about the crowd and how he demanded proof that it was bigger than Obama’s because, for him, it’s all about the size. The bigger the better, right?
An excerpt of Whipple’s book, which will be released in paperback on March 6, was published in Vanity Fair and gives us a juicy, tweet-filled, behind-the-scenes look at the Trump presidency, courtesy of former White House chief of staff Priebus. But one of the biggest standouts from the excerpt was the catastrophic ordeal involving the inauguration crowd.
Priebus told Whipple that Trump called him early in the morning after the inauguration to complain and vent about the Washington Post‘s coverage of the crowd, calling it “bullsh*t.” He insisted there were more people there and claimed that there were a lot of things going on that made it impossible for people to get there.
From there, he just barked orders and wanted Priebus to solve the problem. He wanted Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke and the Park service to get involved and wanted research to be done the “right way.”
Priebus tried to calm him down and defuse Trump’s tantrum, but ultimately it wasn’t worth fighting him. He eventually says “This is a Democrat haven and nobody cares.”
Then, as we all know, then press secretary Sean Spicer said, “This was the largest audience to ever witness an inauguration, period.”
Thus marked the beginning of the “My inauguration crowd was bigger than yours” era.