Newt: This Scaramucci character certainly is divisive and full of himself; Update: Mooch goes off on Bannon and Priebus

Yeah, really. I was all set to like Mooch, scout’s honor, and enjoyed Friday’s press conference. But the guy will. not. shut. the fark. up. already. It’s just too much — the endless preening about purging people, the Hannityesque sycophancy towards Trump, the bizarre outrage over his own leaks, even the stupid sunglasses. He comes off like a Hollywood agent who’s always dreamed of being an A-list star himself and will grandstand in front of any camera pointed his client’s way. I didn’t understand why Spicer up and quit when he was appointed comms chief but now I do. Spending day after day trapped in the West Wing listening to Mooch do his mini-Trump shtick for 20-hour stretches would be unbearable.

Gingrich and Laura Ingraham don’t like him, just like Spicer doesn’t and Priebus doesn’t and Steve Bannon doesn’t and seemingly every other White House aide not named “Jared” or “Ivanka” doesn’t. I don’t get it: What strange appeal does a “divisive,” full-of-himself New York blowhard hold for, er, Donald Trump?

“I think that Scaramucci had better be a lot more careful than he has been,” Gingrich said on the “Laura Ingraham Show.” “He obviously likes the limelight. He obviously likes being in the media. I would say right now that he’s being more pugnacious than effective. I think he ought to slow down a little bit and learn what he’s doing. The things he said about Reince — if he said them — where’s his proof? It’s totally unhelpful to have someone going around starting family fights in public. If he’s gonna be that divisive, I’m not sure he’s gonna be very useful to the President.”

“I think Scaramucci’s full of himself,” added Gingrich. “I think he got down here from New York. I think he’s all excited. And I think he’s, frankly, talking more than he’s thinking. He needs to slow down and learn the business.”

Ah well, this problem is self-correcting. If Scaramucci settles in and quiets down, great. If he doesn’t, his compulsive spotlight-hogging will eventually enrage the president, for whom no spotlight is big enough that it can safely be shared. Bannon ended up on the outs with Trump for crowding into his shot despite scrupulously avoiding TV interviews when he landed on the cover of Time magazine as “The Great Manipulator.” Scaramucci isn’t nearly as media-shy (how could he be, as comms director?), which may explain why his ass-kissing is so fulsome. If he’s going to risk annoying Trump with his own media ubiquity, he needs to soothe him by dialing up the flattery to 11.

As for poor Reince, whose power struggle with Scaramucci looks set to end in defeat at any moment, here’s your analogy of the day courtesy of Axios.

By mid-day Thursday, the only affirmation for Reince from a major public figure was Speaker Paul Ryan, which won’t curry favor with Trump. Trump often says disparaging things about the two of them, per multiple familiar sources. “We’re getting to the point in the fight where a referee needs to wave his hands,” said a source close to the President.

Another source close to the President said he feels nothing but sympathy at this point for Reince, whose current state reminds him of the neglected puppies in the viral Sarah McLachlan videos for the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

As my pal Karl says, hopefully someone soon will give Reince a forever home. He’s a good boy, really, despite having had a cruel master who enjoyed abusing him. “The president specifically gave [Scaramucci] the green light to go after Reince” this morning, a White House advisor told the Daily Beast, which claims Trump has decided “to delegate abuse of his own chief of staff” to Scaramucci instead of firing Priebus forthrightly. When Sarah Huckabee Sanders was asked at today’s briefing if Trump still has confidence in Reince, she ducked the question.

Here’s Gingrich’s exchange with Ingraham about Scaramucci. “There are people inside the administration that think it is their job to save America from this president,” said Mooch this morning, presumably referring to his nemesis Priebus. He could have just as easily been describing Mattis, Tillerson, or McMaster, though — possibly the entire cabinet apart from Jeff Sessions. Who, of course, the president hates now.

Update: Are you kidding, man? This is your communications director? Send this guy packing. He’s a loose cannon.

“They’ll all be fired by me,” he said. “I fired one guy the other day. I have three to four people I’ll fire tomorrow. I’ll get to the person who leaked that to you. Reince Priebus—if you want to leak something—he’ll be asked to resign very shortly.” The issue, he said, was that he believed Priebus had been worried about the dinner because he hadn’t been invited. “Reince is a fucking paranoid schizophrenic, a paranoiac,” Scaramucci said. He channelled Priebus as he spoke: “ ‘Oh, Bill Shine is coming in. Let me leak the fucking thing and see if I can cock-block these people the way I cock-blocked Scaramucci for six months.’ ” (Priebus did not respond to a request for comment.)…

Scaramucci also told me that, unlike other senior officials, he had no interest in media attention. “I’m not Steve Bannon, I’m not trying to suck my own cock,” he said, speaking of Trump’s chief strategist. “I’m not trying to build my own brand off the fucking strength of the President. I’m here to serve the country.” (Bannon declined to comment.)

All that because someone leaked to a reporter that Scaramucci had dinner last night with Trump, Sean Hannity, and former Fox News executive Bill Shine.

David Strom 7:01 PM on September 24, 2022