Fmr. DHS Chief of Staff: I Wrote ‘Anonymous’ Op-Ed in 2018 So People Could Debate the Ideas

Fmr. DHS Chief of Staff: I Wrote ‘Anonymous’ Op-Ed in 2018 So People Could Debate the Ideas


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Janet Ybarra
Former Washington Journalist
Contributor on The Bipartisan Press

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Former Trump administration official Miles Taylor defended his decision to publish a notorious op-ed essay from inside the administration anonymously–even after a CNN host challenged him for previously lying about his authorship on the air.

Taylor, former chief of staff at the Department of Homeland Security, lit the nation’s capital on fire at the time when he published anonymously “I Am Part of the Resistance Inside the Trump Administration” in The New York Times on September 5, 2018.

It became something of a parlor game in Washington DC, at the time to try to guess the identity of “Anonymous.”

Donald Trump expressed outrage and called for an investigation, and more than 30 senior administration officials denied their involvement. 

The essay criticized Trump and said that many members of the administration at the time deliberately undermine his suggestions and orders for the good of the country. It also states that some Cabinet members in the early days of the administration discussed using the 25th Amendment to remove the president.

Taylor followed up his essay by publishing a book last year, A Warning, also anonymously.

Taylor outed himself only this month.

“It is a character study of one man, the President of the United States. And it wasn’t me throwing other colleagues under the bus. The point was to focus on him and his record. And if you go back in time, Chris, our Founding Fathers did this,” Taylor said in an on-air interview with CNN host Chris Cuomo. “When they wrote the Federalist Papers to defend the passage of the Constitution, did they do it in their own names? They did it under pseudonyms and they did it for a reason, because [James] Madison and the other authors didn’t want it to be about them and their personalities. They wanted people to debate the ideas.

“I wrote this, Chris, because I wanted people to debate the ideas and Donald Trump’s character and record. But again I want to point out to you, I had no fear about putting my own name on the line here, and that’s why I did it months ago, so people could come out and challenge me, they could pick apart my record, they could pick apart my stories,” he added.

Cuomo sharply challenged Taylor, however, for lying about the authorship of the essay in a previous appearance on the network.

“All right. First, what matters most, certainly to me. You lied to us, Miles. You were asked in August if you were Anonymous here with Anderson Cooper, and you said no. Now, why should CNN keep you on the payroll after lying like that?” Cuomo asked.

“Chris, it’s a great question, and I will just give you the blunt truth,” Taylor replied. “When I published The Warning, I said in the book that if asked, I would strenuously deny I was the author.”

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