Trump Made White House Staffers Sign NDAs That Last Forever

Erika Holt
March 20, 2018

The Washington Post's Ruth Marcus, writing for the opinion section, said that senior White House officials were asked to, and did, sign nondisclosure agreements where they said they wouldn't reveal confidential information, and if they did, would face financial damages.

Marcus called such agreements that gag White House staff members even after the president's term "not only oppressive but constitutionally repugnant".

It's well-known that almost everyone in Donald Trump's orbit has to sign a nondisclosure agreement, from business associates, to campaign employees, to women he may or may not have had an affair with.

The White House is pushing back against a Washington Post column claiming that senior staff were required to sign non-disclosure agreements (NDAs) pertaining to their jobs.

Draft documents noted that violators would be subject to penalties of $10 million if they spoke about any "nonpublic information" they gained access to during their time working in the White House-even if they waited until the end of Trump's presidency to share the information, and even if they wrote a fictional account containing "any mention of the operations of the White House, federal agencies, foreign governments, or other entities interacting with the United States Government that is based on confidential information". He said, "I've never seen one, I've never been asked to sign one and I've never signed one".

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Giving himself a little bit of wiggle room, Gidley made a comment that suggested it was the dollar amount that the Post quoted that made the story, in the White House's eyes, factually inaccurate. If you have a leaker on your staff, the cure is firing, not suing.

"I'm proud to support this administration's commitment to battling this epidemic", said Trump, before introducing her husband. The adult film actress, whose real name is Stephanie Clifford, allegedly had an affair with Trump in 2006.

President Trump has tried to keep the saga at arm's length, but on Friday he got into the mix. It also underscores that the president of the United States doesn't know or care how the government works.

Michael Avenatti, Daniels's attorney, slammed Trump's team for a "bullying tactic" in pursuing such an enormous sum from a private citizen over "bogus" damages in a maneuver that is "likely unprecedented in our history". That includes communications with the press or other federal, state and local government employees, the report said.

CBS's 60 Minutes reportedly plans to air an interview with Daniels on Sunday, March 25. Current and former staffers might be paying attention too. That alone is potentially enough to keep them quiet no matter how much they might want to speak out about their time in the Trump White House.

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