Nov 27, 2023 - Politics & Policy

Scoop: Haberman, Swan sign deal for Trump book

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Swan and Haberman on "Inside Politics Sunday" in October. Screenshot: CNN

Maggie Haberman and Jonathan Swan have signed a deal for the definitive book about Donald Trump's final act in public life — whatever that final act is.

Why it matters: The two have owned the Trump beat for years, with deep, wide sources in his orbit and throughout the Republican Party he has transformed.

Simon and Schuster won a furious competition for the deeply reported book by the two New York Times political correspondents.

  • The publication date depends on what happens in 2024 — it'll be 2025 at the earliest.
  • Haberman wrote the international bestseller "Confidence Man" about the former president. Swan won an Emmy for his captivating "Axios on HBO" interview with Trump in 2020.

What we're hearing: The duo's untitled Trump project aims to be more enduring than a campaign book — with plenty of juicy inside-the-room detail, but also the larger story of this singular figure in global affairs and public life for the past decade.

  • And, of course, it'll likely be part courtroom drama.

Between the lines: The two will continue their scoopy coverage — including their series, with Times colleague Charlie Savage, about the stakes of a Trump return to power — until they begin work on the book.

  • Refuting a misperception on social media, The Times said Haberman kept editors apprised of news she was learning for "Confidence Man."

Sources familiar with the project tell Axios the country is part of the story — as are Elon Musk, Mark Zuckerberg, Rupert Murdoch and a host of other cinematic figures.

  • One arc of the narrative is the collision of forces that produced Trump's comeback after Jan. 6: He was written off as politically dead. Now he's the likely Republican presidential nominee — which would give him at least a 50-50 chance of returning to the Oval Office.

Haberman was represented by Matt Latimer of Javelin. Swan was represented by Pilar Queen at UTA.

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