In The Amateur: Barack Obama in the White House, which hit shelves Tuesday, author Edward Klein claims that the Obamas discussed divorce in 2000, after Obama failed to heed to his wife’s feelings about him challenging Democratic congressman incumbent Bobby Rush for a seat in the House of Representatives. Obama was trounced in the election, which he considered a turning point in his career.
But despite the incendiary claims, Klein, a right-wing author who has published books in the past that made outrageous and thoroughly debunked claims about Democratic politicians, has had this latest book largely ignored by the mainstream media because of the outrageousness of the charges he makes.
Among the book’s more questionable claims is an anecdote in which Klein quotes Rev. Jeremiah Wright accusing the Obama campaign of trying to bribe him to remain silent during the 2008 campaign. The book also goes after Michelle Obama, saying she is jealous and suspicious of the president around other women, she was wary of his relationship with Oprah Winfrey and she didn’t want Oprah coming to the White House because Michelle hates fat people.
This is the same Edward Klein whose 2005 book about Hillary Clinton, The Truth About Hillary, insinuated that she was a closeted lesbian who conceived Chelsea Clinton after she was raped by Bill. He also co-authored a book with a well-known “birther,” John LeBoutillier—who has also accused President Obama of being involved in several murders—that implied Obama was a Kenyan-born Muslim. He describes that self-published book, The Obama Identity: A Novel (Or Is It?), as a novel based on truth.
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“During the dark days that followed his defeat, he turned to Michelle for comfort. But she was in no mood for sympathy,” Klein reportedly writes in The Amateur. “He had refused to listen to her warnings about taking on” Rush.
The unauthorized biography, which Klein claims is based on nearly 200 interviews, has been dismissed by a cast of experts, including presidential spokesperson Eric Schultz. On Monday, Schultz told the Washington Examiner, “Ed Klein has a proven history of reckless fabrication in order to sell books. Nobody in their right mind would believe the nonsense in this one.”