Think of the bumper stickers if not the hats… The Mooch is Back, Baby!
Okay, it’s probably a bit too soon for those sorts of celebrations, but at least a few reporters, notably those from the Daily Beast, are pushing a story claiming that ousted Trump comms director Anthony “The Mooch” Scaramucci is on the verge of making a return to the White House. Of course, this is all coming from anonymous “sources close to Scaramucci” so you can take that for what you will. Still, some of the quotes sound rather in keeping with his rather flamboyant character.
Losing your job in a fit of self-immolation after a mere ten days may seem like the type of professional stumble that doesn’t lend itself to a comeback. But Anthony Scaramucci, a.k.a. the Mooch, appears to be positioning himself to give politics another go.
The former White House communications director has privately told friends and associates that the president and other members of the Trump family, including White House adviser and first daughter Ivanka Trump, miss him and want him back in the West Wing. Three sources close to Scaramucci have independently told The Daily Beast that the Mooch continues to brag that he and President Donald Trump talk on the phone, and that the Mooch believes his resurrection in Trump-world could be imminent. One of these sources said that the Mooch claimed he was flying out to either Washington, D.C. or Mar-a-Lago early this month to meet Trump to talk about it.
There are several major hurdles the Mooch must clear before all systems are a go. Most serious among them: Trump himself doesn’t appear to be on board. In fact, it’s not clear if President Trump, or Ivanka, is even in touch with the sacked comms director.
So how likely is this to be true after the rather explosive run the Mooch had during what must have been the shortest tenure of anyone to ever man the lectern at the White House press briefings? While all things are possible in an infinite universe, and particularly when President Trump is involved, this sounds rather unlikely at best. For starters, nobody at the White House is owning up to the reports that Trump and Scaramucci are still even on speaking terms. Plus, the Mooch actually sent a text to the Daily Beast shooting down the story as complete BS.
Scaramucci, for his part, denied that he’s been telling people at all about a Trump administration resuscitation.
“[T]his is absolute nonsense,” he said in text messages to The Daily Beast. “Happy new year [and] be well. I have said nothing like that at all…Don’t believe BS.”
So was the Daily Beast (or the sources they’re relying on) simply making this up? Perhaps, but there are a couple of equally plausible explanations. Scaramucci’s relationship with the truth during his brief turn on the public stage was, at times, casual to say the least. He also really seemed to enjoy being in the limelight. Is it so hard to believe that he’d get together for drinks with some friends and associates and claim that he was still an influence on White House affairs? Suggesting that he was this close to heading back to the White House would make him look a lot more impressive. And when he gets called out on it he simply denies it.
Or it could be the sources making a lot of hay out of some casual comments. Let’s face it… the Mooch is a great character for political theater and generating clicks. If nothing else, that’s true just for the name. Every story of a major mafia bust always has reporters making references to “Joey Bag of Donuts” because it’s fun to say. (There wasn’t really any such major mob figure to the best of my knowledge. It’s more of a figure of speech.) If Scaramucci’s name were Robert Jones and his nickname was “Bob” this story would get a lot less traction.
But is Scaramucci possibly being considered for a return engagement? In order for that to happen, we’d have to be able to imagine what he’d be doing. I can’t picture Sanders stepping down from her role and the Mooch was pretty much an unmitigated disaster there, so that’s probably out. Just some generic “White House Adviser” role perhaps? Before we write this off entirely it’s worth remembering that Trump places a great deal of value on loyalty and it sounds like the Mooch has remained loyal as a hound dog, particularly during his appearances on Fox News.
You know… the more I sit here and ponder it, maybe this story isn’t as crazy as it sounded at first.