One of the few people who has managed to stay with President Donald Trump all the way through his administration is counselor to the president Kellyanne Conway, despite her repeated embarrassments on national television. She defended lies about Trump as “alternative facts,” invented a fictional terrorist attack to justify the Muslim travel ban, and has thrown temper tantrums whenever she is criticized for babbling unprompted about Hillary Clinton.
But despite the fact that Conway is so incoherent that she is frequently contradicted by her husband on social media, and despite the fact that she offers such unadulterated, false Trump propaganda that Washington Post reporter Margaret Sullivan has argued for blackballing her from cable TV entirely, Trump cannot let go of her. And as The Daily Beast notes, in a recent interview with Stephen Colbert, former White House aide Cliff Sims highlighted the key reason Trump will not get rid of her:
“Why won’t he fire her? Why won’t he trash her publicly?” Colbert asked Sims on Conway. “It makes no sense to me. He’ll attack anyone. Why not her?”
“One of the things I try to do in this book is help people understand what makes Donald Trump tick. And one thing that never goes out of style in the Trump White House is someone who’s willing to go on TV and just fight it out with somebody. He knows she will go out there on any show and defend him.”
This makes sense. Trump, above all, is a man who expects unswerving loyalty from his underlings. It is one of the things he allegedly demanded of former FBI director James Comey before firing him. Whatever else you might say about Conway, she is constantly on message and ready to spar with anyone who criticizes Trump.
Sims’ new book, “Team of Vipers,” offers a number of new revelations about the president’s personal behavior, from how he begged the former acting NASA chief to put a man on Mars by 2020, to how he called Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) “mean as a snake” for wanting to go after Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV).