Challenging new book's claims, Trump says he is 'a very stable genius'

    President Donald Trump walks on the South Lawn as he leaves the White House in Washington, Friday, Jan. 5, 2018, enroute to Camp David, Md., to participate in congressional Republican leadership retreat. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

    President Donald Trump defended his intelligence and mental stability on Twitter early Saturday as he prepared to meet with top Republican lawmakers to set their agenda for 2018.

    In a series of tweets from Camp David, Trump challenged the portrayal of him in Michael Wolff’s new book, “Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House.” Wolff, who said he conducted over 200 interviews for the book, wrote that Trump aides left him with the “indelible impression” that every single one of them believed he is “incapable of functioning in his job.”

    In various passages, Wolff alleges that Trump does not read, does not understand policy, is forgetful, and is treated like a child by those around him. The White House has pushed back hard against the suggestion that the president is mentally unfit for office.

    Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said Thursday that questions about Trump’s ability to do his job are “disgraceful and laughable.”

    Trump himself tackled the issue head-on Saturday, claiming on Twitter that “mental stability and being, like, really smart” have been his two greatest assets in life.

    According to the president, his critics in the Democratic Party and the media are using “the old Ronald Reagan playbook” against him, referring to questions raised about President Reagan’s mental state in the 1980s. Reagan was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease years after leaving office.

    Noting that similar attacks on his intelligence and fitness to serve by opponent Hillary Clinton failed during the 2016 campaign, Trump touted his success as a businessman, a television star, and a politician.

    “I think that would qualify as not smart, but genius....and a very stable genius at that!” he tweeted.

    Earlier in the morning, Trump applauded the unemployment rate for African-Americans hitting its lowest level in decades and asserted that ABC News should have fired a reporter who was suspended over inaccurate reporting about him last month.

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