Trump aides gave up trying to communicate with him in the attack on the US Capitol, calling him 'mentally unreachable', reports sayJanuary 7, 2021
- Aides have described President Donald Trump being detached and ignoring their pleas during the storming of the US Capitol building on Wednesday.
- One official told The Washington Post that Trump had been blinded by "this notion that he's been treated unfairly" and 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 trying to communicate.
- Axios reported, paraphrasing sources, that the president was "mentally unreachable."
- Per The Post, Trump was incensed at Vice President Mike Pence, who presided over the congressional session to confirm Joe Biden as president-elect and "couldn't see straight."
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President Donald Trump was detached from reality as his supporters stormed the US Capitol, according to multiple reports citing those 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 process of certifying 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.
An administration official described the president as being "a total monster" who is "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 long-held and untrue claims that the 2020 presidential election was stolen due to voter fraud — allegations which have been repeatedly rejected in court.
Axios wrote, paraphrasing its sources, that Trump's closest friends and White House officials were "avoiding him like the plague," and that they had "given up trying to communicate with him, considering him mentally unreachable."
On Wednesday afternoon, 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 reported, citing a Trump advisor, that people close to Trump were "certain the president wanted this and is enjoying it."
According to Politico, there were fewer staff than normal around Trump. It noted that White House senior advisor Jared Kushner was traveling from the Middle East that day.
"I don't know who is getting through to him right now," Politico cited a former senior administration official saying.
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."
According to the Post, Trump was so angry at Vice President Mike Pence, who presided over the congressional session, that "he couldn't see straight."
Trump has in recent days called on Pence repeatedly to reject Electoral College votes for Biden and declare Trump as the winner of the 2020 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 results on Twitter. Around two and a half hours later, he released a video calling on his supporters to stop the violence at the Capitol.
But in the video, the president continued to push his false claims that the election was stolen from him, and told his supporters: "We love you; you're very special."
Twitter later locked the president out of his account, citing the tweets and video. However, the social platform said Trump had removed the tweets that led to his suspension, and that he would get access to his account again on Thursday.
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