Kellyanne Conway: Yes. Trump lost

In her book, she writes she told Trump the same.

“Stuck in a parallel universe, many Trump supporters deluded themselves into thinking that somehow the president would remain in office or be reinstated once gone. Trump was more shocked to lose in 2020, I think, than he was to win in 2016,” Conway writes, although she adds that questioning the election results or “partisan activists” doesn’t make you the “QAnon Shaman.”

“I may have been the first person Donald Trump trusted in his inner circle who told him that he had come up short this time,” Conway writes.

Though hardly an unbiased narrator, Conway writes a book that is part biography, part dishy political tell-all, part heartfelt reflection on motherhood, and part marriage therapy session. She also provides a behind-the-scenes look at the Trump White House during some of its most tumultuous moments.

Throughout its 506 pages, she is quick to level sharp critiques at some of her former colleagues, like Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner (“He misread the Constitution in one crucial respect, thinking that all power not given to the federal government was reserved to him.”), Trump’s 6-foot-9-inch tall campaign manager Brad Parscale (“It is easy to conclude with Brad, height is not depth.”), or former chief of staff Mark Meadows (“trying to be POTUS’s BFF”).

But she also notes, in passing, that she found allies in unexpected places. For example, Conway says that after the murder of George Floyd in the summer of 2020, she consulted with two “trusted, wired, smart accquaintances,” Democratic commentator Van Jones and former Democratic National Chair Donna Brazile, both Black, about the moment.

Conway is known for her occasional sharp elbows and unrelenting capacity to spin, and her book is full of trademark sarcasm and barbs, especially when it comes to the press and the never-ending quest at the Trump White House to find internal leakers. But Conway does write with evident pain about her own family dramas that spilled out into the public, like her husband George Conway’s spats with Trump, and her teen daughter Claudia’s rebellion on TikTok.

She rarely criticizes Trump himself, though does cop to regrets about steps taken, especially around the Covid-19 pandemic. In one passage, she recalls proposing in the Oval Office that Trump deliver a message to the public with former presidents George W. Bush, Jimmy Carter, Barack Obama and Bill Clinton.

“Looking at Trump across the Resolute Desk, I could picture all five presidents standing there, lending their support to him as he tackled this ‘once in a century’ pandemic,” writes Conway. “He declined.”

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