Then-Rep. Mark Meadows said he was “nervous” when he first saw a red call button on President Donald Trump’s desk in the Oval Office.
Pressing the button would ensure a Diet Coke was delivered to Trump.
In his new book, Meadows wrote that he “braced for whatever sonic boom, breaking glass, or cloud of smoke” would come when it was pressed.
Mark Meadows described feeling “nervous” the first time he saw President Donald Trump press a red button on a wooden box on the Resolute Desk in the Oval Office because he unaware that the call box prompted the delivery of a Diet Coke to Trump.
This scene comes from Meadows’ new book, “The Chief’s Chief,” which came out on Tuesday.
It was 2017 and Meadows was a North Carolina congressman, invited into the Oval Office to discuss moving the US embassy in Israel to Jerusalem. During the meeting, Trump noticed that Meadows couldn’t stop staring at the red button on the call box, according to the book.
“Makes you nervous, doesn’t it?” the president asked, according to Meadows.
Meadows was curious about what the button could do, writing that it “seemed like something you might use to launch a nuclear missile, or maybe to order SEAL Team Six into action.”
Then Trump pressed the button, which made Meadows “surprised, and a little nervous,” he wrote.
“I braced for whatever sonic boom, breaking glass, or cloud of smoke I assumed was coming. I sat there with my eyes wide,” Meadows added.
Seconds later, a naval steward brought Trump an ice-cold glass of Diet Coke.
“That’s impressive,” Meadows said at the time, per his book.
Trump then pushed the button again and a Diet Coke was delivered to Meadows, he wrote in his book. The conversation then shifted back to the discussion at hand.
Trump introduced the Diet Coke call box to reporters in April 2017, a few months after he took office. Over the years, he regularly used the button to have his favorite soda delivered.
The call box has been around for decades, and presidents have relied on it to summon an aide when they needed something. It’s been pictured next to Presidents Barack Obama and George W. Bush during their respective times in office.
The box has also been photographed beside President Joe Biden, though it’s unclear whether he uses it for his staff to deliver something specific to him, the way his predecessor did.
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