It is a whodunnit, the like of which has not gripped the nation’s capital for decades.
Perhaps not since “Deep Throat” in 1972 revealed to Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein, details about Richard Nixon that would ultimately lead to his resignation, has Washington been so obsessed with discovering the identity of an official insider with juicy and damning information about the US government.
As it is, 46 years after his first famous scoop, Woodward is back in the news as leaked excerpts from a forthcoming book, Fear: Trump in the White House, portrayed a dysfunctional “crazytown” administration in a state of nervous breakdown.
Donald Trump angrily dismissed Woodward’s yet-to-be published book as “already discredited”. But his emotions over that forthcoming publication appear to have been modest compared to the “volcanic rage” with which he reportedly reacted to an anonymous op-ed in the New York Times, apparently written by a senior official in his own administration.
The official described themselves as part of a “resistance” inside the government that was working to protect the country from Trump’s worst impulses and had considered, but decided against, seeking to use the constitution’s 25th amendment and replace him with vice president Mike Pence.
“We believe our first duty is to this country, and the president continues to act in a manner that is detrimental to the health of our republic,” the official wrote.