Donald Trump made a vaguely sarcastic if not insincere public apology to his wife Melania and Fox News host Sean Hannity on Thursday over reports that he vented his anger at them for suggesting he endorse Dr. Mehmet Oz in Pennsylvania.
The former president unleashed against ‘fictional stories’ that suggest he spent much of election night in a fury over Republicans’ lackluster showing in the midterms – which multiple members of the party are blaming him for.
In another post made later on Thursday morning, he called himself a ‘stable genius.’
‘I’d like to apologize to Melania and Sean Hannity for all of the Fake News and fictional stories (made up out of thin air, with no sources despite them claiming there are!), being dumped on you by reporters and “News” Organizations who know these stories are not true,’ Trump wrote on his Truth Social app.
It was one of many posts he’s made in the span of an hour.
In another, he simultaneously disputed reports that his chosen candidates struggled while also denying responsibility for the lack of a ‘red wave’ on Tuesday.
‘For those many people that are being fed the fake narrative from the corrupt media that I am Angry about the Midterms, don’t believe it,’ Trump said. ‘I am not at all angry, did a great job (I wasn’t the one running!), and am very busy looking into the future. Remember, I am a “Stable Genius.”’
He also took aim at Fox News, his former favorite network, after coverage at every major outlet of its parent company Fox Corp emphasized Republicans’ blame game with Trump over the midterms.
‘For me, Fox News was always gone, even in 2015-16 when I began my “journey,” but now they’re really gone. Such an opportunity for another media outlet to make an absolute fortune, and do good for America. Let’s see what happens?’ Trump said.
It began just before 2am on Thursday, when he attacked media reports that say he unleashed fury over the poor performances of candidates he’s endorsed in marquee races throughout the country.
Donald Trump lashed out against media reports that he was ‘furious’ on election night over the GOP’s underwhelming performance
He also issued a public apology to his wife Melania Trump and Fox News host Sean Hannity after the New York Times reported that he was ‘furious’ at them for telling him to back Mehmet Oz in the Pennsylvania Senate race – but he was apologizing for the ‘fictional stories’ and disputed the report
The former president endorsed more than 300 candidates across local, state and federal races – many of them incumbents in safe seats. So it’s fair to say that a large share of his favored politicians did win.
However, Trump-backed candidates running in some of the most consequential races either outright lost or are still struggling – and fellow Republicans reportedly hold him responsible.
The New York Times reported on Wednesday morning that Trump was ‘furious’ about his candidates’ showing, particularly Dr. Mehmet Oz failing to keep Republicans control of Pennsylvania’s open Senate seat. The next day, the outlet reported that Trump’s fellow party members believe he’s driving the GOP ‘off the side of a cliff.’
He accused the Times of running to ‘enemies and losers’ for comment in a pair of posts made on his Truth Social app just before 1:45am on Thursday morning.
‘Incredible how dishonest the Fake News Media is.The Failing New York Times has gone crazy,’ Trump wrote.
‘So many of the people I Endorsed went on to victory on Tuesday Night, nobody was even close, and they literally make up a story refusing to write the facts, and only quoting enemies and losers.’
But images taken of the former president that night at Mar-a-Lago suggest he was discomforted
‘Almost all of the people I endorsed WON, yet if you read the story from two Trump hating writers (who only do as they are told!), you would not even recognize the truth. They truly are, THE ENEMY OF THE PEOPLE!!!’
He added in a follow-up post, ‘…219 WINS against 16 LOSSES IN THE GENERAL ELECTION, and yet the Fake News writes only unrecognizable junk. No wonder they are all doing sooo badly!’
Following Oz’s loss to Pennsylvania’s progressive Lt. Governor John Fetterman on Tuesday night, Trump reportedly lashed out at multiple close allies who suggested he endorse the celebrity doctor – including Fox News host Sean Hannity and former First Lady Melania Trump.
Photographs of the former president taken that night at Mar-a-Lago show him looking discomforted.
Trump’s endorsement of Oz was critical to his winning a competitive GOP primary against David McCormick, a more establishment Republican who was backed by a number of fellow Republicans and even former members of his administration.
He was reportedly angry about the loss of Mehmet Oz in Pennsylvania in particular, and reportedly lashed out at Melania Trump and Sean Hannity for suggesting he endorse the celebrity doctor
Another big loss for Pennsylvania Republicans was Trump-endorsed candidate Doug Mastriano’s bid for governor
Times reporter Maggie Haberman wrote on Twitter, ‘Worth remembering that Trump is a grown man who endorsed Oz over the objection of some of the people closest to him, and instead went beyond just endorsing and attacked Dave McCormick from the stage at a rally.’
Even before the election, Trump had been at odds with the more traditional faction of the GOP led by party veterans like Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.
But now the disdain for him among some Republicans is reaching a climax after promises of a ‘red wave’ to sweep the House of Representatives and the Senate did not materialize.
Former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, a Trump ally-turned-critic, told ABC News on Wednesday, ‘Almost every one of these Trump-endorsed candidates that you see in competitive states has lost.’
‘It’s a huge loss for Trump. And, again, it shows that his political instincts are not about the party, they’re not about the country,’ Christie said. ‘They’re about him.’
Former New York Republican Rep. Peter King, whose home turf of Long Island actually did see some big GOP gains in the House, nevertheless told the Times that Trump is at fault for the party’s lackluster performance elsewhere.
‘His self-promotion and his attacks on Republicans including Ron DeSantis and Mitch McConnell were largely responsible for Republicans not having a red wave,’ King reportedly said.
Trump adviser David Urban told the Times, ‘Republicans have followed Donald Trump off the side of a cliff.’
Aside from Oz, Pennsylvania Republicans also saw another big setback with the expected loss of gubernatorial candidate Doug Mastriano, who Trump had also endorsed.
Mastriano, who was in Washington when his fellow Trump supporters stormed the US Capitol on January 6 last year, proved too polarizing for many voters in the battleground state.
Trump’s favored candidates in Arizona, Kari Lake and Blake Masters, are slightly behind their Democratic opponents with their races still too close to call. It’s a state the GOP was confident about seeing big victories in.