“Every day he looks more and more like a complete moron”

“Trump himself hasn’t been implicated in any of these leaks except where he’s implicated himself, where he says something that makes his perhaps less-than-sterling intentions clear,” said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity in order to discuss the controversy candidly. “He keeps saying there’s no collusion, and I think he’s right. So if he would just shut his trap, what would Dems have?

“Okay, he fired Comey,” the official conceded. “With a semi-competent comms operation, that would blow over in 24 hours. And that’s the worst part: he has a competent comms staff. But they can’t do their jobs because he keeps running his mouth.”

Those complaints echo weeks of griping from administration and White House officials who say that Trump, through unscripted tweets and statements to the press, has undermined a White House communications operation that is trying to dig him out of a very deep public relations hole—not to mention the legal bind the president may find himself in.

Trump’s repeated media missteps have frustrated even longtime supporters. “Every day he looks more and more like a complete moron,” said one senior administration official who also worked on Trump’s campaign. “I can’t see Trump resigning or even being impeached, but at this point I wish he’d grow a brain and be the man that he sold himself as on the campaign.”