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Omarosa: I Have Been 'Uncomfortable' With Things I Saw in White House

Omarosa: I Have Been 'Uncomfortable' With Things I Saw in White House

By    |   Thursday, 14 December 2017 11:08 PM

Former "Apprentice" star Omarosa Manigault Newman Thursday flatly denied reports that she was "dragged" from the White House after meeting with Chief of Staff John Kelly, but admitted in an interview that over the last year, there were many things she observed as director of communications for the Office of Public Liaison that affected her "deeply and emotionally."

"I have to be very careful about how I answer this, but there were a lot of things that I observed during the last year that I was very unhappy with, that I was very uncomfortable with, things that I observed," Manigault Newman told "ABC This Morning" correspondent Michael Strahan in an exclusive interview.

Manigault Newman's resignation was announced Wednesday, but her last official day is Jan. 20, one year to the day she began working for President Donald Trump, and she told Strahan she'll be ready to talk more after that date passes.

"I can't expand upon it because I have to go back and work with these individuals," Manigault Newman said. "But when I have my story to tell as the only African-American woman in this White House, as a senior staff and assistant to the president, I have seen things that have made me uncomfortable, that have upset me, that have affected me deeply and emotionally."

Such things, she added, have "affected my community and people, and when I can tell my story, it is a profound story that I know the world will want to hear."

Strahan pointed out to her that one of her friends, businessman Armstrong Williams, had said she was not happy with Trump's endorsement of Roy Moore for senator in Alabama, but she told him she had to be careful about what she said.

Williams told The Washington Post Wednesday that "as recently as last week she told me about her concerns about the president endorsing Roy Moore. It bothered her, being a woman."

He said he did not know if Manigault Newman had told Trump about her concerns, and she did not confirm to Strahan if she'd spoken with the president on the matter.

Other friends told the post that Manigault Newman did not agree with Trump on his handling of issues involving race, including with his response to last summer's violent rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, during which a counter protester was killed.

Meanwhile, Manigault Newman told Strahan that she resigned and was not fired, and she fully disputed the "interesting tales" of her departure as "100 percent false."

"I resigned and I didn't do that in the residence as being reported," Manigault Newman told Strahan. "[Chief of Staff] John Kelly and I sat down in the situation room, which is a very secure, very quiet room in the White House and we had a very candid conversation. I wanted to make the one-year mark that was one of the goals that I set out to and then get back to my life."

According to a report by American Urban Radio Networks reporter April Ryan, the fight between Manigault Newman and Kelly began at one of two Christmas parties at the White House on Tuesday, when Kelly tried to discuss her access to Trump.

"One of the things I asked of those people making those assertions, since they assert that I did it so publicly, is where are the pictures or videos?" said Manigault Newman. "If I had confronted John Kelly, who is a very formidable person, it would garner enough attention for anyone in the room to at least take a picture or a video or something?"

The Secret Service has denied claims that she was dragged away from the property, but acknowledged it has deactivated her passes.

"The assertion that I would do that in front of 600 guests at a Christmas party and no one has reported that except for one individual who has a personal vendetta against me, and so I have to tell you completely false, unverified reporting," Manigault Newman told Strahan.

Before Kelly came, Manigault Newman Newman and other assistants had the ability to walk in and speak with Trump, but the new chief of staff came in and stopped that. However, she said he did not restrict her access to Trump.

"First of all, he brought order, much needed order to the West Wing, absolutely," she said. "If the president called us and wanted to talk to us, then we went to talk with him. I went into the Oval to talk with the president any time."

Trump, she added, reads and watches a lot of news, and if he has questions he calls in one of his assistants.

"I was very respectful of the process," she said. "Certainly, I had more access than most and people had problems with that. People had problems with my 14-year relationship with this president. But I've always been loyal to him, straightforward, and I've provided him with the support that he's needed throughout this year and the White House."

Manigault Newman also denied that she'd tried to enter the White House to speak with Trump after her meeting with Kelly.

"The White House is the most secure place in the world," she said. "It is ridiculous to assert that anyone would be able to violate the security parameters that is outlined in the most secure building in the world. Not only is it ridiculous, but it is also absurd and I would hope people recognize there is a good security infrastructure around this president. I wouldn't want anyone nonetheless myself to run around. He is truly the president of the United States."

Manigault Newman said her access was limited after her resignation to restrict her access to classified information.

"That should be done in that way," she said. "As people's roles in the White House change, so should their access. What they tweeted is correct and I believe that CNN should correct their reporting...I was not escorted. I did not cause a disruption."

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Former "Apprentice" star Omarosa Manigault Newman Thursday flatly denied reports that she was "dragged" from the White House after meeting with Chief of Staff John Kelly, but admitted in an interview that over the last year, there were many things she observed as director of...
omarosa, resigns, uncomfortable, white house
Thursday, 14 December 2017 11:08 PM
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