Donald Trump’s rep hit back at a critical profile written by BuzzFeed’s McKay Coppins on Thursday that described the mogul as trapped in “the bubble of luxury and loyalty” and a “showman” who was obsessed with media coverage of his political ambitions.
“It is a totally dishonest and unfair article, written by a politically irrelevant website,” Trump’s EVP and Special Counsel Michael Cohen told TheWrap. “From the moment the reporter entered the vehicle to the time he left Mar-a-Lago, his only goal was to write a negative piece.”
“Mr. Trump is totally unfazed by this article,” Cohen added. “Most people in his situation would have just said thank you to Mr. Trump for his graciousness and hospitality.”
In the article, Coppins describes an adventurous 36 hours, where the reporter accompanied Trump on a tour of his ritzy Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach, Florida. With help from one of Trump’s political consultants, Sam Nunberg, BuzzFeed was given exclusive access and Coppins acknowledges his host treated him “like royalty” for the interview. Trump let Coppins ride in his plane, tag along in his golf cart, and even relax poolside at his mansion for the story.
Despite Trump’s generosity, Coppins strikes a very skeptical tone in the piece, dishing dirt on Trump’s trusted confidants as well as his favorite and least favorite journalists.
Nunberg had originally thought the article as pitched to him would be an “opening” for BuzzFeed and Trump’s relationship, who previously had icy relations. “This has closed the door,” Nunberg said.
He also disputed Coppins’s reporting on a Trump speech at a New Hampshire “Politics & Eggs” event where he claims the audience was allegedly bored. “The New Hampshire account is completely inaccurate,” Nunberg said.
TheWrap asked BuzzFeed’s Coppins to describe how he landed the interview and special access to Trump.
“I pitched one of Trump’s aides in December on getting access for a BuzzFeed profile, and they were eager to make it happen,” Coppins explained. “As I mention in the piece, Trump is apparently pretty forward-thinking in his view of the media landscape. (“It used to be the New York Times, now it’s BuzzFeed.”)”
“It was a fluke that we ended up in Palm Beach, but I was happy to take advantage,” he adds. “I haven’t heard what he thinks of the final product yet, but I’m eagerly awaiting his thoughts via tweet — or maybe a handwritten note.”