Trump aides gave up trying to communicate with him in the attack on the US Capitol, calling him 'mentally unreachable,' reports say

Trump aides gave up trying to communicate with him in the attack on the US Capitol, calling him 'mentally unreachable,' reports say
President Donald Trump.Erin Schaff - Pool/Getty Images
  • As supporters of President Donald Trump ransacked the Capitol building on Wednesday, the president was acting detached and ignoring aides' pleas, according to multiple reports.
  • One official told The Washington Post that Trump was "so driven by this notion that he's been treated unfairly" and that he struggled to understand events.
  • Axios and Politico reported that some of Trump's close friends and advisors were trying to avoid him and had given up trying to communicate.
  • Axios paraphrased sources as saying the president was "mentally unreachable."
  • The official told The Post that Trump was so incensed at Vice President Mike Pence, who presided over the congressional session to confirm Joe Biden as the president-elect, that "he couldn't see straight."

President Donald Trump was detached from reality as his supporters stormed the US Capitol on Wednesday, according to multiple reports citing people close to him.

Trump aides are said to have given up trying to communicate with him during the crisis.

During the attack, which forced Congress to temporarily abandon the certification of Joe Biden's victory in the election, Trump was at the White House defending his supporters and refusing to condemn the violence, The Washington Post reported.
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An administration official described the president as "a total monster" who was "so driven by this notion that he's been treated unfairly that he can't see the bigger picture."

The official was referring to Trump's untrue claims that the 2020 presidential election was stolen from him because of widespread voter fraud - allegations that have been repeatedly rejected in court.

Axios paraphrased its sources as saying that Trump's closest friends and White House officials were "avoiding him like the plague" and that some had "given up trying to communicate with him, considering him mentally unreachable."
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On Wednesday afternoon, the New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman said that Trump's aides were trying to get him to issue a strong statement against the violence but that he was "ignoring these entreaties."

Haberman also described a Trump advisor as saying that people close to Trump were "certain the president wanted this and is enjoying it." According to Politico, fewer staffers than normal were around Trump on Wednesday. The report noted that the White House senior advisor Jared Kushner was traveling back from the Middle East that day.
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"I don't know who is getting through to him right now," a former senior administration official told Politico.

One Republican whom Politico described as being close to Trump also told the outlet: "I don't want to talk to him ... What am I going to say? This is one of those moments when I don't know if I want to be involved."

The official who spoke with The Post said Trump was so angry at Vice President Mike Pence, who presided over the congressional session, that "he couldn't see straight."
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Trump has in recent days repeatedly called on Pence to reject the electoral votes for Biden and declare Trump the winner of the election instead - something the vice president has no power to do.

Read more: Lawmakers, Hill staffers, and reporters recount the harrowing experience as a violent pro-Trump mob broke into the Capitol to protest the electoral-vote count

As rioters stormed the Capitol, the president continued to attack the election result on Twitter. Hours later, he released a video calling on his supporters to stop the violence.
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But in the video, the president continued to push his false claims that the election was stolen from him, and he told his supporters, "We love you; you're very special."

Twitter locked the president out of his account, citing the tweets and the video. But the social-media platform later said Trump had removed the tweets that led to his suspension and would regain access to his account on Thursday.

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