Former Trump administration official Cliff Sims recently garnered national headlines over the release of his book about his time at the White House.
Titled Team of Vipers: My 500 Extraordinary Days in the Trump White House and released last month, Sims documents his experiences working under Trump, both the highs and the lows.
The title was inspired by the book Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln, a 2006 best-selling book about the diverse political views and personalities of those working in the Lincoln administration.
“I wanted to portray the President as he really is — a multi-dimensional person, with extraordinary gifts and major flaws, just like the rest of us,” Sims explained to The Christian Post.
“I didn’t think much about whether things were ‘positive’ or ‘negative,’ I just wanted to peel back the curtain and show him how he really is behind the scenes.”
Sims’ book stirred outrage from President Donald Trump, whose campaign filed an arbitration claim against Sims, alleging he violated a non-disclosure agreement, according to CBS News.
In response, Sims filed a lawsuit in district court on Feb. 11 accusing the Trump administration of trying to unlawfully silence him.
“The U.S. government is intentionally and unconstitutionally engaging in a subterfuge effort to use a private entity, Donald J. Trump for President, Inc., to do its bidding to silence Mr. Sims when it is really the intense powers of the presidency coming down upon a sole individual,” read the suit, as reported by CBS.
The Christian Post reached out to Sims before the district court lawsuit was filed. He responded via email to questions on matters including his experiences working in D.C., how his Christian beliefs were put to the test, and his views on the current 2020 presidential election field. Here are excerpts from the correspondence.
CP: In the book, you explained that your opinion of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell changed considerably when you finally worked alongside him during your time in the administration. Were there any other members of Congress who you had a major change of opinion on due to your time in Washington, D.C.?
Sims: After seeing [McConnell] operate, I came to respect his toughness.
Unfortunately, most other members were exactly what I had always assumed: paralyzed by the fear of political retribution and a lot more concerned with the next election than they are with the next generation.
There are some really good members of Congress who are working hard, trying to do the right thing, hoping to make a real difference on behalf of their constituents. But most of them aren’t the big names you’ve probably heard.
CP: On pages 190-194, you spoke about President Trump’s evangelical advisory board, saying that you never heard them challenge him on points of moral concern. However, according to evangelical Trump adviser Johnnie Moore, there have been many times when board members tried to influence Trump on certain issues, like immigration and prison reform. How do you respond?
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SOURCE: Christian Post, Michael Gryboski