Omarosa still keeps in touch with current White House staffers, and focuses on a 2020 candidate

 

Omarosa Manigault Newman is not as radioactive to folks at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue as some may think.

The former reality star turned polarizing political operative says she’s remained in contact with current White House staffers, even after she spilled the beans on President Trump’s administration in the book “Unhinged: An Insider’s Account of the Trump White House,” which is out in paperback this week.

“I have talked to a lot of people who currently serve in the White House, and who previously served in the White House,” Manigault Newman, 45, told the Daily News.

“Let's think about the people who have left,” she continued. “So many of them have gone through very similar experiences like me, where Donald Trump publicly had someone else get rid of them or whatever. There is a whole, long line of people that he's treated that way. There is a group of us who talk and who communicate, and who commiserate.”

One of Trump’s prominent 2016 campaign staffers, Manigault Newman was appointed as Assistant to the President and Director of Communications for the Office of Public Liaison after Trump took the oath of office in 2017. She was fired from that role in December 2017 – then channeled her vitriol for her book, which was released in August. The book was supported by numerous audio recordings she made during her time in the White House.

Manigault Newman was mum when it came to naming names this time around.

“I'm not gonna betray the confidence of my friends and my colleagues,” she said. “We interact, let's just say that. No, we don't have a [group chat]. And there are people who are currently [working] there who are not comfortable. They feel afraid to leave because they know that the work that they're doing is so important. And they also know that he's erratic, and he hasn't been filling positions of people who leave.”

Related: Omarosa through the years

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Omarosa through the years
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Omarosa through the years
LOS ANGELES - JANUARY 30: BIG BROTHER: CELEBRITY EDITION -- Omarosa on the first-ever celebrity edition of BIG BROTHER in the U.S., will debut with a three-night premiere event, Wednesday, Feb. 7 (8:00-9:01 PM, ET/PT), Thursday, Feb. 8 (8:00-9:00 PM, ET/PT) and a two-hour live show on Friday, Feb. 9 (8:00-10:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network (Photo by Cliff Lipson/CBS via Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES - JANUARY 12: Omarosa (43), a Television personality, originally from Youngstown, Ohio and currently living in Jacksonville, Fla., will be one of the celebrities competing on BIG BROTHER: CELEBRITY EDITION, the first celebrity edition of reality hit BIG BROTHER in the U.S., which follows a group of celebrities living together in a house with 87 HD cameras and more than 100 microphones recording their every move 24 hours a day. The three-night premiere event airs Wednesday, Feb. 7 (8:00-9:00 PM, ET/PT), Thursday, Feb. 8 (8:00-9:00 PM, ET/PT) and a two-hour live show on Friday, Feb. 9 (8:00 ÃÂ 10:00 PM, ET/PT), on the CBS Television Network. (Photo by Cliff Lipson/CBS via Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES - JANUARY 29: Omarosa (43), a Television personality, originally from Youngstown, Ohio and currently living in Jacksonville, Fla., will be one of the celebrities competing on BIG BROTHER: CELEBRITY EDITION, the first celebrity edition of reality hit BIG BROTHER in the U.S., which follows a group of celebrities living together in a house with 94 HD cameras and 113 microphones recording their every move 24 hours a day. The three-night premiere event airs Wednesday, Feb. 7 (8:00-9:01 PM, ET/PT), Thursday, Feb. 8 (8:00-9:00 PM, ET/PT) and a two-hour live show on Friday, Feb. 9 (8:00 ÃÂ 10:00 PM, ET/PT), on the CBS Television Network. (Photo by Cliff Lipson/CBS via Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 26: Director of Communications for the White House Public Liaison Office Omarosa Manigault (L) waits for the beginning of an event highlighting the opioid crisis in the U.S. October 26, 2017 in the East Room of the White House in Washington, DC. Trump plans to authorize the Department of Health and Human Services to declare a nationwide public health emergency in an effort to reduce the number of opioid overdose deaths across the nation. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - SEPTEMBER 27: (R) Omarosa Manigault Newman and John Newman attends the premiere of Pure Flix Entertainment's 'A Question Of Faith' at Regal 14 at LA Live Downtown on September 27, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Leon Bennett/Getty Images,)
Omarosa Manigault (L), aide to U.S. President Donald Trump, stands beside White House spokesman Sean Spicer (R) at a press briefing at the White House in Washington, U.S., February 14, 2017. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque
Former campaign manager Corey Lewandowski (C) says hello to reporters as he and White House advisors Sebastian Gorka (from L), Omarosa Manigault and Communications Director Anthony Scaramucci accompany President Trump for an event celebrating veterans at AMVETS Post 44 in Struthers, Ohio, U.S., July 25, 2017. Jonathan Ernst: "The most visible person in any White House is naturally the President, followed by the press secretary. But there are also the staff who support them, any one of whom might suddenly jump into public view and be national news for a day or two. For those of us covering the President Trump administration, there seem to be more compelling figures in the West Wing than ever before. It's crucial to know who's who and why they're important. When I raised my camera and back-pedalled ahead of the group to take this image Lewandowski gave me a hello and pointed right into the lens. I liked the photo, but had no idea it would go a little bit viral, especially since Scaramucci, who was the biggest mover and shaker that week, was hidden back in the pack. But I guess the image catches a glimpse of what it's like to be a West Wing staffer on the road." REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst/File Photo SEARCH "POY TRUMP" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "REUTERS POY" FOR ALL BEST OF 2017 PACKAGES. TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
WASHINGTON, DC - MARCH 29: Counselor to the President Kellyanne Conway (L) and Omarosa Manigault (R) attend an event celebrating Women's History Month, in the East Room at the White House March 29, 2017 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 27: Director of Communications for the White House Public Liaison Office Omarosa Manigault listens during the daily press briefing at the White House, October 27, 2017 in Washington, DC. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
Omarosa Manigault, President Donald Trump's Director of Communications for the Office of Public Liaison, was present for the White House press briefing in the James S. Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House, on Monday, June 5, 2017. (Photo by Cheriss May/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 14: Omarosa Manigault, aide to President Donald Trump, watches during a meeting with parents and teachers in the Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington, DC on Tuesday, Feb. 14, 2017. (Photo by Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 16: White House staff member Omarosa Manigault (L), takes selfie with other staff members before President Donald Trump's news conference where he announced Alexander Acosta as the new Labor Secretary nominee in the East Room at the White House on February 16, 2017 in Washington, DC. President Trump also fielded questions from reporters. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
Omarosa (L), White House director of communications for the Office of Public Liaison, talks with an aide prior to a news conference by U.S. President Donald Trump at the White House in Washington, U.S., February 16, 2017. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque
PASADENA, CA - FEBRUARY 11: Omarosa Manigault attends the 48th NAACP Image Awards at Pasadena Civic Auditorium on February 11, 2017 in Pasadena, California. (Photo by Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic)
Omarosa Manigault, a staffer for US President-elect Donald Trump, listens as Martin Luther King III speaks to the media after meeting with the President-elect at Trump Tower in New York City on January 16, 2017. / AFP / DOMINICK REUTER (Photo credit should read DOMINICK REUTER/AFP/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 12: Omarosa Manigault, incoming White House director of communications for the Office of Public Liaison, listens as Ben Carson, Secretary of Housing and Urban Development-designate, testifies before Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee during his confirmation hearing at the Dirksen Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill on January 12, 2017 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Leigh Vogel/WireImage)
Omarosa Manigault, director of African American outreach for President-elect Donald Trump, arrives at Trump Tower in New York, U.S., on Tuesday, Dec. 13, 2016. Exxon Mobil Corp. Chief Executive Officer Rex Tillerson will be nominated as Trump's secretary of state, setting up a potential confirmation battle with U.S. lawmakers who have questioned the oilman's relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Photographer: John Taggart/Bloomberg via Getty Images
HOLLYWOOD, CA - DECEMBER 07: Omarosa Manigault arrives at the The Hollywood Reporter's 25th Annual Women In Entertainment Breakfast at Milk Studios on December 7, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Steve Granitz/WireImage)
LAS VEGAS, NV - NOVEMBER 06: TV personality Omarosa Manigault attends the 2016 Soul Train Music Awards at the Orleans Arena on November 6, 2016 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Mindy Small/FilmMagic)
NATIONAL HARBOR, MD - DECEMBER 08: Omarosa Manigault attends the MGM National Harbor Grand Opening Gala on December 8, 2016 in National Harbor, Maryland. (Photo by Paul Morigi/Getty Images for MGM National Harbor)
LAS VEGAS, NV - NOVEMBER 04: (L-R) Television personality Omarosa Manigault, BET EVP of Strategy and Operations Richard Gay, and Chef Huda attend 'Soul Lunch & Greens: A Charity Golf Experience' at Top Golf at MGM Grand Hotel & Casino during Soul Train Weekend on November 4, 2016 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Bryan Steffy/BET/Getty Images for BET)
INGLEWOOD, CA - OCTOBER 08: Omarosa Manigault and Bishop Kenneth Ulmer attend the Inform Your Vote President Election Debate at The Tabernacle on October 8, 2016 in Inglewood, California. (Photo by Todd Williamson/WireImage)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - AUGUST 17: Omarosa Manigault attends the premiere of 'Ben-Hur' at TCL Chinese Theatre IMAX on August 16, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic)
HOLLYWOOD, CA - AUGUST 17: Omarosa Manigault attends the premiere of 'Ben-Hur' at TCL Chinese Theatre IMAX on August 16, 2016 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 24: TV personality Omarosa Manigault participates in the 2016 BETX Celebrity Golf sponsored by Nike on June 24, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Matt Winkelmeyer/BET/Getty Images for BET)
LOS ANGELES, CA - MAY 24: TV Personality Omarosa Manigault attends the Jovani store opening celebration at Jovani on May 24, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Paul Archuleta/Getty Images )
TV personality Omarosa Onee Manigault arrives for the 102nd White House Correspondents' Association Dinner in Washington, DC, on April 30, 2016. / AFP / Andrew Biraj (Photo credit should read ANDREW BIRAJ/AFP/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - APRIL 30: Omarose Onee Manigault attends the Garden Brunch prior to the 102nd White House Correspondents' Association Dinner at the Beall-Washington House on April 30, 2016 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Paul Morigi/WireImage)
WASHINGTON, DC - APRIL 29: Omarosa Manigault attends the Google/HBO celebration of 'All The Way' during White House Correspondents' weekend at the Renwick Gallery on April 29, 2016 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Paul Morigi/Getty Images for Google)
PASADENA, CA - FEBRUARY 05: TV personality Omarosa Manigault attends the 47th NAACP Image Awards presented by TV One at Pasadena Civic Auditorium on February 5, 2016 in Pasadena, California. (Photo by Imeh Akpanudosen/Getty Images for NAACP Image Awards)
NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 14: Omarosa Manigault attends Aretha Franklin's 74th Birthday Celebration at The Ritz Carlton Hotel on April 14, 2016 in New York City. (Photo by Steve Mack/Getty Images)
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Vacancies have been a major issue for Trump’s administration. According to the Partnership for Public Service, a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization focused on good governance, of 715 key positions requiring Senate confirmation, 436 – or 60% — are confirmed, while the other 40% are not. Nearly 20% of those positions have no nominee.

“He doesn't see the need to fill those positions. You can't run a private company with 40% of your staff vacant,” she said. “Why does he think he can run the government that way? I just don't understand it. It alarms me. And it should concern all Americans.”

Amid Trump’s tumultuous first term in office, Manigault Newman doesn’t believe he’ll stand a chance in the 2020 election.

“He has demonstrated that he does not have the fortitude, the intellect, the temperament, the self-control to be the Leader of the Free World,” she maintained. “And the American people will give you a chance to serve and to lead, but if they see you flailing as he is, then they will replace you.”

“Remember, he serves because of the will of the people,” she continued. “They gave him a chance and he squandered it.”

The Youngstown, Ohio native, who also served in the Clinton Administration, believes Trump’s base is diminishing and many of the people who supported him early on have lost hope in him.

“He has been losing support, not gaining support,” she said.

“In order for him to win, he has to expand his base. But if you look at the trend lines, his base is shrinking. You have to figure out where he is going to make up the difference, particularly in those really competitive races in battleground states, like the state of Ohio, where I grew up. What happens you go into Cuyahoga County or Mahoning County? What happens when you get into Greene County in the south? He's going to face challenges that he did not face the first time around. And he has to somehow find a way to make up those gaps.”

Speaking of 2020, the self-proclaimed “free thinker,” who has aligned herself with swing voters, is planning to lead a movement to elect anyone other than the current White House occupant.

“Hashtag anybody but Trump,” she deadpanned.

“I’ve been in politics 20 years," Manigault Newman said. "This is the first time in 20 years that I don’t have to take a position... I’m going to sit back and look at all the candidates, Republican and Democrat, and they’re both going to have to earn my support and my vote, and I will decide.”

One candidate from the 2020 field stands out to Manigault Newman, however.

“I’m not supporting any particular candidate,” she said, adding, “I will say that I’m a little partial because I’m a proud graduate of Howard University, and to see a very smart, intelligent African-American woman from my own university running, I believe will have an incredible impact on young women like myself entering politics, serving at the highest levels and being engaged in a process that we were not necessarily given access to.”

“And I think it pays wonderful homage to Shirley Chisholm, another New Yorker, who was willing to take that big leap,” she added. “I like to just highlight Kamala Harris, if I could, and the significance of her being in this race.”

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