It's no secret that President Donald Trump often pillories truth and contradicts himself, so it's no surprise he doesn't like having his meetings recorded, as previous presidents have.
On Tuesday, a former White House stenographer authored an op-ed in the New York Times detailing why the 45th president is so averse to being on the record.
Opinion | I Was a White House Stenographer. Trump Wasn’t a Fan. - The New York Times https://t.co/B76cGZeJue— asc (@asc) 1531944458.0
Beck Dorey-Stein served as a record-keeper in the White House from 2012-2017, serving both President Barack Obama and Trump in the early days of his presidency. In her op-ed, Dorey-Stein offers a compelling but simple reason Trump doesn't like being recorded.
"Mr. Trump likes to call anyone who disagrees with him 'fake news.' But if he’s really the victim of so much inaccurate reporting, why is he so averse to having the facts recorded and transcribed?"
"It’s clear that White House stenographers do not serve his administration, but rather his adversary: the truth."
@NewDay This does NOT surprise me: @realDonaldTrump does NOT like anyone to record what he says. (HINT: No #ConMan… https://t.co/21BWwXyGHO— SteveBrant (@SteveBrant) 1531929069.0
Dorey-Stein also recalled her time working for previous administrations and the respect stenographers were paid for their accurate documentation of what presidents would say.
George W. Bush used to call out, 'I love the stenos!'whenever he saw my boss, Peggy, or her colleagues.
@NewDay @jaketapper Because record keeping catches all his lies!! Too bad we could use his Twitter account and all… https://t.co/vIUkyz2Pxn— DazedAndOriented (@DazedAndOriented) 1531921990.0
A particularly stunning example of Trump's antipathy toward the truth came last week during his visit to the United Kingdom. In an interview with the British tabloid The Sun, the president trashed Prime Minister Theresa May's approach to implementing Brexit.
Trump claimed May ignored his advice on how to handle negotiations on Britain’s exit from the European Union, which was approved by voter referendum in 2016. The president said May has gone “the opposite way” of what he had suggested and that the results have been “very unfortunate.”
“She wrecked it" was the overall tenor of the interview.
@NewDay The former “White House” stenographer has said that the prez wouldn’t say, “check the transcript.” This pre… https://t.co/Rjs31x9WnX— Feisty (@Feisty) 1531913411.0
But just hours later, Trump called reports about the interview "fake news" even though every word he spoke was recorded. Even more perplexing was when he said:
“Fortunately, we tend to record stories now...we record when we deal with reporters."
Dorey-Stein recalled that as early as "the Monday after Mr. Trump’s inauguration," Trump made it clear that he "doesn’t like microphones near his face.”
When Trump was interviewed by MSNBC's Lester Holt last year, the same interview in which the president admitted he fired FBI Director James Comey over "the Russia thing," Dorey-Stein was told by a colleague that she "would not be needed often because 'there would be video.'"
Another instance of Trump refusing the presence of stenographer was during an interview Trump held with former Fox anchor Bill O'Reilly.
"I watched with disbelief as the White House communications director Hope Hicks summoned Mr. O’Reilly to the Oval Office so he could speak with Mr. Trump privately," Dorey-Stein recounted.
She added that during her time working for Obama, stenographers were encouraged to record interactions between journalists and the president "just in case the reporter came out with an inaccurate quotation."
Perhaps Trump's desire to avoided being recorded is the reason he insisted on meeting with North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un in private during their summit in Singapore last month––and why the president held a closed-door meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki in which only translators were permitted to accompany both leaders.
@NewDay You could always get a transcript from the Russians. I would be shocked if they were not recording the meeting.— Janet Grishaber (@Janet Grishaber) 1531923549.0
In a follow-up interview with CNN, Dorey-Stein said she lost pride for her job while working for Trump.
Beck Dorey-Stein told CNN that Trump doesn’t use stenographers because he doesn’t care about the truth. https://t.co/2RLWpm5TdO— HuffPost (@HuffPost) 1531931943.0
"I quit because I couldn't be proud of where I worked anymore," she told Carol Costello. "I felt like President Trump was lying to the American people ... he wasn't even going the extra mile to have the stenographers in the room."
"I quit because I couldn't be proud of where I worked anymore," says Beck Dorey-Stein, former WH stenographer: "I f… https://t.co/QhoqSaI6L0— New Day (@New Day) 1531911603.0
Indeed, Trump's habitual lying is well-documented. CNN reported in May that Trump has lied more than 3,000 times since taking office.
@foulmouthwoman @NewDay @Me78120345 It used to be an average of 6 lies a day. Its upto 10 a day the last week.— FP (@FP) 1531934853.0
"That means that, on average, Trump says 6.5 things that aren't true a day. Every. Single. Day."