White House or Fight House? Tevi Troy’s new book looks at tiffs and turf wars among White House staffers


With us and we're gonna talk about that you know the fussing and fighting vet says going on in the White House and don't think for a second that that's exclusive to Donald trump's administration you know it's kind of interesting anytime it's its whatever you're closest to write in history and other things they have to be the worst you know and so Donald Trump his administration's wise it just has to be the worst all the fussing and fighting in in fighting that's going on like no other president before well before you really jump that shark and think that that is the case then you start believing you're hyperbole I once you get your hands on this new book called White House from doctor Tevye Troy bestselling author and former White House adviser okay he's been on the inside he's known as and researched and studied this and he's right about now with his book White House rivalries in the White House from Truman J. trump Dr Troy welcome to the show good to have you with us thanks bill Bradley on talk about played out hello this is this is it this is exciting you know that you know to put this out because you know this conversation has come up from time to time and you always hear from you know the hyperbolic that downhole trump is the worst ever and then you you start bringing back some of the the stories and histories and now here it is you've documented it I imagine if you wanted to go back even before Truman we we have to do episodes inch you know volumes of all the fussing happening in the White House right no absolutely and and we know that they were fighting before experiment where we are perfect I mean you look at the administration of Washington and Hamilton and Jefferson murder each other's throats but the difference is they were cabinet members and when I try to get that in my house how the dynamic change once we had the creation of a White House staff there was no real White House staff before Roosevelt and Truman the first person to enter the White House staff and make change the dynamic in that certainly you have the people who are close to the president meaning in the same building advising him on foreign policy and economic policy and then you might have a treasury secretary or spectators biggest ticked off that somebody else is inviting in his area that was one thing that changed in that that meant that I wasn't quite interesting to note that that the dynamic in the entrance of more humanity just because the more issues right yeah look and government was growing mistake became higher and then also you have this right the best celebrity White House aide the whole idea of a White House staff was supposed to be people with a passion for anonymity but that went away pretty quickly especially in the Kennedy administration when he hired people who are already famous like orcas lessons or to work in the White House is suddenly how celebrity White House they had its own reputation has long ties to the craft and they they could get their word out there if the policies were not going their way and to suddenly you have this idea of leaks and counter leaks you can make you look good in the press and that also at the White House right now make that I talk about the book in the course that is continued and become almost like a to the degree of a tender green black belt when you talk about all this and leaking and stuff going on you know but bad enough that it happens in DC but now of course with the most recent refill we understand that even ambassadors in our state department is running rampant with it as well yeah well you talk about ten degree black belt and that that was Henry Kissinger I'll tell you one great story that's been quite how's that Kissinger was dating Jill St John a very attractive bond girl actress Mandy comes out in the papers that Kissinger's dating this woman and Kissinger ghost and extending complains that his rival Christy William Rogers leaked the information about your retaining but the truth is that your lease it because a he wanted everyone to know he was dating that the truck the bond girl would be he wanted to hurt Rogers any internal wars and bribery deposit so what happened what was it what was the conclusion that well well written exam would rail about all the leaking that happened at the state department and constant complained about it but just not your fat it but at least some of the time we know the kiss your will the guy doing the leaking and then blaming the state department and of course everybody knows because your date of birth second longer up there with a win win corrective measure like you would can degrade black belt in Plato's exactly so he gets the he gets the reward and the award let's talk about president Truman we touched a little bit on that I mean he he he was I guess the modern era of the expanding the staff and and really kind of bringing this into play and of course it's just been kind of kind of a a monolith that like the blob is just been growing unto itself right yes Sir but instrument you have the right there were just unbelievable I don't I'm a presidential historian I've been putting this stuff for decades and the story behind in spite house were were things I'd never even heard of and one breaks during the ministration is that the secretary of state George Marshall as opposed to the recognition of the state of Israel which is flabbergasting to update the business interest on July especially right there at that critical time because it was true and that led the battle for inferred knowledge meant of Israel that would that would be very fight with marshals on the wrong side of it Clark Clifford a junior White House beat it on the right side of it make an argument in front of Clifford Clifford and Truman and Marshall are all arguing out in the White House Clifford wins the argument Truman recognized Israel Marshall is still mad that he never again the clippers or mentions his name for the rest of life right yeah right because so it's pretty petty but yeah such as such as you can't be the government the illusion of the Kennedy Camelot regime you said was not devoid of conflict as well of course in Kennedy do you have this notion of Camelot music wonderful people sitting around a table can you never even heard the term Camelot elections administration that comes from our interview that took place after the administration after he was dead yes but even in the administration there was fighting taking place especially between Lyndon Johnson and Robert F. Kennedy canteen was the product any would be turned general and the president brother Lynn Johnson vice president that you hated each other going back to their time in the Senate together when we can't even the lowly staffer and Johnson with the Senate Majority Leader and they had these nasty nicknames for him brought Robert if they reported Johnson is ruthless corded phone and get a canny referred to by Johnson as bunny boy really didn't like each other and they're always trying well anyway and we've known that that that tension what is it was pretty extreme there between them what else within the Kennedy at Camelot compound anything else that you discovered yeah there was a a a a rivalry between artists less intervention before they collect their prize winning historian who came to the White House when the first intellectual ever worked in the White House and then there was Ted Sorensen it was not as well known but he was closer to Kennedy and there was tension between them that continued even after the administration because the two of them we're kind of bracing to get their books out first hand stories then asked her to stop and stop writing his books but it's different in different book out first plus you're obviously would not agree and there were and the race was on and it it colored their relationship there's tension between them that went on for a long time and I got to imagine especially after the assassination these rivalries it would increase all the more would they not yeah and if there is one great story that dean Rusk with the sector state did not like that Slazenger called him brutalized in silence in meetings during the Kennedy administration implying that he wouldn't say anything that's a rough put it out there the only reason he was silent in meetings this lessons are within the facilities are respected leaker and we would talk about everything that he heard needing three wins Mr this is this is great fun Dr Chevy try I'd say it's good fun because you know the politics is just right for comedy it's it's when we take it too seriously like at times we're doing right now in this current environment then we deprive ourselves of of the little bit of humor in thank you Dr drive for presenting

Coming up next