‘Had This Vacant Look’: Author Says Trump Had ‘Severe Memory Issues’ During Interviews


An author who interviewed Donald Trump extensively after his departure from the White House said the former president demonstrated “severe memory issues” during their meetings.

Ramin Setoodeh, a co-editor-in-chief at Variety, appeared on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” Monday to discuss his new book, “Apprentice in Wonderland.”

Setoodeh said he interviewed Trump in person six times for the book, starting in 2021.

Over the weekend, Trump called on President Joe Biden to take a cognitive test, and then proceeded to repeatedly misremember the name of the physician who administered the test to him during his presidency. That doctor, Rep. Ronny Jackson (R-Texas), is now a staunch Trump ally in Congress.

Pointing to the weekend incident, Setoodah commented, “Donald Trump had severe memory issues.”

“As the journalist who spent the most time with him, I have to say he couldn’t remember things,” he said. “He couldn’t even remember me.”

The author said he and Trump spoke for an hour in May 2021. A few months later, when he returned to Trump Tower in Manhattan for another interview, Trump “had this vacant look on his face,” he added.

“He had no recollection of our lengthy interview that we had, and he wasn’t doing a lot of interviews at that time,” he continued. “So I think that the American public really needs to see this portrait of Donald Trump.”

The Trump campaign dismissed the claims about his memory.

“President Trump was aware of who this individual was throughout the interview process, but this ‘writer’ is a nobody and insignificant so of course he never made an impression,” Trump campaign spokesperson Steven Cheung said in a statement, per Forbes.

“After recognizing the importance of The Apprentice and its significant cultural impact on a global scale, this ‘writer’ has now chosen to allow Trump Derangement Syndrome to rot his brain like so many other losers whose entire existence revolves around President Trump,” he continued.

Setoodeh said he and the former president spent hours in the boardroom at Trump Tower rewatching old clips from “The Apprentice” for the book, which, according to a synopsis, brings to light the “never-fully-told, behind-the-scenes story” of the reality series that “catapulted [Trump] to the White House.”

According to Setoodeh, the interviews also painted a picture of a former president with a desire for revenge, fixation on famous people, and dangerous knack for captivating an audience.