A Trump administration staff member crammed pictures of President Biden’s son Hunter Biden into the White House’s air conditioning unit during the presidential transition, breaking it, according to a new book set to be released on Tuesday.
The action by the employee, who worked for then- Presidential Personnel Office Director John McEntee, was one of several examples of ways members of the Trump administration sought to undermine the incoming administration, according to New York Times journalist Maggie Haberman’s book, “Confidence Man,” Politico reported based on excerpts it reviewed.
Haberman reported both “rank-and-file” staffers and members of the senior staff from the Trump administration, including then-chief of staff Mark Meadows, were not cooperative with their incoming successors, per Politico.
Referring to Trump’s false claims that the 2020 election was stolen from him, Meadows reportedly told incoming chief of staff Ron Klain that he knew the former president was “saying these things,” but it would all be worked out.
However, the Biden team were delayed in getting information from the Pentagon and obstructed in getting access to COVID-19 vaccines at the start of their rollout, according to Haberman. Meadows also refused to give them access to a computer system to start working on Biden’s budget, saying that they “can’t expect us to endorse your spending plans.”
After Klain asked Meadows for Biden to begin receiving daily intelligence briefings, Meadows asked how many days per week Biden wanted it. Klain was reportedly “dumbstruck” by the question and told Meadows that Biden wanted it every day.
Meadows responded that “no president ever does that” and that it’s “never happened.”
“It seemed so beyond Meadows’ own experience that he could not comprehend it,” Haberman said in the book, according to Politico.
Trump reportedly often did not read his daily intelligence briefings while president. Presidents usually receive a summary of national security and intelligence information on a daily basis, and presidents-elect are usually given access to that information while transitioning to become president.
Haberman additionally reported that Meadows texted Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas’s wife Ginni Thomas, who was involved in efforts to dispute the results of 2020 election in multiple states, that “this is a fight of good versus evil,” according to Politico.
Meadows did not immediately return a request from The Hill for comment through America First Legal, a conservative legal advocacy group where he is a board member.