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All of former Scientology mouthpiece Tommy Davis’s appearances in ‘Melania and Me’

Stephanie Winston Wolkoff’s eye-opening book about the price she paid helping out the Trump administration and her longtime friend Melania Trump, which came out on September 1, turns out to have some passages we thought would interest you.

Titled Melania and Me: The rise and fall of my friendship with the First Lady, Winston Wolkoff describes how her background not only as Melania’s close friend and adviser but also her track record putting on such large events as the Met Ball was the reason she and her firm, WIS Media Partners, were chosen to plan Trump’s 2017 inaugural festivities. Since then, the enormous $107 million raised for the event, and that $40 million of it continues to be unaccounted for, has been an enduring scandal of the Trump years.

Winston Wolkoff explains how she was scapegoated by the administration and thrown to the wolves by her friend Melania in order to keep attention off of the people who should really be explaining where the money had gone, and in particular one of Trump’s closest friends and biggest fundraisers, Santa Monica real estate investor Tom Barrack.

That’s a name that’s very familiar to readers here at the Underground Bunker because after losing his job as chief spokesman for the Church of Scientology, Tommy Davis went to work for Barrack doing the same kind of work for him that he formerly did for Scientology leader David Miscavige. And except for a period in 2016 working for another billionaire, Australian gambling magnate James Packer, Davis returned to work for Barrack and was doing so when the shit really hit the fan over the Trump inauguration money. (Also, Tommy got remarried last year, as we described in a review of his journey after the Sea Org.)


In her book, Winston Wolkoff describes how her well-documented and legitimate work for the Trumps putting on the inauguration was going to be spelled out in a tax filing from the Presidential Inauguration Committee (PIC), a 990 form that journalists were clamoring for in early 2018. Although the release of information was making everyone at the White House nervous, Winston Wolkoff figured she had nothing to worry about not only because she had thorough receipts covering what she had done, but also because she wouldn’t actually be named in the document — it was her company WIS that would be listed.

In intricate detail, she describes how, as documents were filed and press releases prepared, she kept picking up on things that made her worry. And then, the story fed to the New York Times made it sound like Winston Wolkoff (not her company) was the source of a scandal — that $26 million had been given to Melania’s “friend.” (Actually, Wolkoff was a White House staff member and not just a friend, she’d been paid less than $500,000, and the other money she handled had gone to vendors who put on the events.)

And who came up with that story for the Times that threw Winston Wolkoff to the wolves? She makes the case that Davis was certainly in the middle of it. Now, prosecutors are circling around this event and Winston Wolkoff has said she is cooperating with multiple investigations. Barrack certainly has to be concerned, but will Tommy Davis be drawn into a probe by the Southern District of New York? We sure can’t wait to find out.

Anyway, here’s every mention of Davis in the book. Grab your copy today.

Page 282:

Heather [Martin] informed us that Tom Barrack’s advisor Tommy Davis (former chief spokesperson for the Church of Scientology, son of actor Anne Archer, and friend of Tom Cruise) had been fending off media requests that asked, “Where is the 990?” for months.

Page 288:

Heather said, “I got [your corrections]. I am going to talk to Tommy [Davis] again this morning and tell him we need to release to a friendly.” She meant a friendly journalist who would tell the story the way they wanted it to be told. “We have to get ahead of it. There were two more articles yesterday wondering where the money is.”

Page 292:

On February 13, Tuesday, Heather emailed, all jazzed up. “Spoke to Tommy [Davis], convinced him we need to go all in and be proactive! I am tweaking the press release they wrote and trying to get some surrogates ready to speak positive.”

Later, she emailed about the journalist they’d given the exclusive to. Heather’s text read, “We’re all set, moving forward on Thursday [two days hence]. The plan is that Maggie Haberman [of the New York Times] will run the story on Thursday per Tom Barrack.” Depending on whom you talked to, Haberman was either tough on Donald Trump or a complete suck-up to him. That didn’t matter. The issue was Haberman’s relationship with Tom Barrack. According to Heather, Haberman was “a friendly.” She would present the story the PIC wanted the world to read.

She continued, “And they will also give the package to [Sean] Hannity and [Laura] Ingraham [at Fox News].”

I didn’t know anything about a “package.” This was all making me very nervous.

Heather kept me up-to-date on everything. “The [990] report is officially filed,” she texted me at 11:00 p.m. “We’re starting to get questions. The NY Times will likely be the first story.” She said Tommy Davis was making sure that my credentials would be emphasized in the articles. Huh? But my name hadn’t been on the press release…


Pages 296-298:

I woke up the next morning, February 15, 2018, to see my name and picture splashed across the front page of the New York Times website under an article headlined “Trump’s Inaugural Committee Paid $26 Million to First Lady’s Friend” by Maggie Haberman and Kenneth P. Vogel

With those ten words, life as I knew it ended…

Only after I went ballistic did Heather Martin and Tommy Davis tell me they’d “try to help [me] and clear up the confusion” that they’d caused with the Times. Later in the article, it was stated that “…although committee officials said she used that money to help pay other inaugural workers who reported to her,” but it was already too late.

Page 301:

My mind was spinning. In the middle of my meltdown, I received calls from Heather and Tommy Davis, who were dealing with the press on this. Sometime during the course of the horrific day, the Times headline changed to “Trump Inaugural Committee Paid $26 Million to Firm of First Lady’s Adviser,” adding “Firm of” and changing “Friend” to “Adviser.” The Times ditched the original defaming headline, but I have a screenshot, and it exists in the annals of Reddit.

Tommy told me, “We worked very hard to clear up the misconception about the one point six million dollars and to make clear your incredible reputation and outstanding qualifications to be picked for the job you did.”


Leah Remini podcast: The fair gaming of Alex Gibney

Your proprietor was fortunate enough to be included with a lot of great people who took part in Alex Gibney and Lawrence Wright’s amazing 2015 HBO documentary about Scientology, “Going Clear,” which was based on Wright’s 2013 book of the same name.

And we certainly remember, as the date neared for the documentary’s premiere at the Sundance Film Festival in Utah in January 2015, that Scientology leader David Miscavige was beginning to freak out. It was really something to see Scientology take out full-page ads in the New York Times denouncing the film even before anyone had a chance to see it.

Scientology also began posting videos smearing people the church believed were going to appear in the movie (and guessed wrong!) and we thought, they aren’t going to dare to do the same thing to Gibney himself, one of the most respected and highly successful documentary filmmakers in the world, would they?

But yes, Scientology went after both Wright and Gibney with anonymous smear websites and propaganda videos, and we marveled at how stupid they were. But we’ve always been curious about what Gibney thought of that harassment campaign, and so it’s a real treat to have him discuss it with Leah Remini and Mike Rinder on their new podcast. Listen to it here!



A footnote: Gibney said that Scientology successfully kept Wright’s book from being published in certain countries, like England. But that was only temporary, as we reported in 2016, when Silvertail Books brought out ‘Going Clear’ in those countries.


Source Code

“The amoeba and the monocell and the cellular form is apparently an endowed thing. OT comes along and says, ‘Let there be chicken,’ you know. That’s about where all that fit. And he endows this and he leaves a sort of a puddle of theta to continue to animate it, you see. Does a few quick tricks with the — you can’t say ‘fingers’ — and you get an endowment. And that apparently is the way which you get cells. That isn’t factual, from a standpoint of experience or anything like that. I don’t mean that there’s data available here by which we’ve suddenly animated matter. But it more or less is a conceptual basis on which bodies are built. And somebody mocks it up and somebody else can keep it running. But there is something to this old gag of, they say, they go out and say hello to the flowers, you know, and they grow better. Well, at a very, very low state that would not be possible, of course. A person isn’t able to reach that far. But they sort of have a dim idea that they could do it, you see. Because way, way back someplace they probably did. So they go out and say hello to the flowers.” — L. Ron Hubbard, September 8, 1966


Overheard in the FreeZone

“Dems, including Scientologists, ex-Scientologists and ‘Dem OTs’ are getting their R6 implant restimulated, and becoming Ethics particles. They are intent on destroying civilization. This is why LRH created the Sea Org. To escape this dramatization.”



Random Howdy

“The conspiracy cult is way scarier and more dangerous than any religious cult. The country is on the verge of a civil war thanks to these cynical manipulators and their feeble-minded, heavily-armed adherents. Alex Jones and the rest should be deported for insurrection.”


Full Court Press: What we’re watching at the Underground Bunker

Criminal prosecutions:
Danny Masterson charged for raping three women: Arraignment scheduled for September 18.
Jay and Jeff Spina, Medicare fraud: Jay’s sentencing is set for October 5 in White Plains, NY. Jeffrey’s is set for October 24.
Hanan and Rizza Islam and other family members, Medi-Cal fraud: Next pretrial conference set for Jan 12 in Los Angeles
Dennis Nobbe, Medicare fraud, PPP loan fraud: Charged July 29, bond raised to $350,000 on Aug 27.

Civil litigation:
Luis and Rocio Garcia v. Scientology: Oral arguments were heard on July 30 at the Eleventh Circuit
Valerie Haney v. Scientology: Forced to ‘religious arbitration.’ Motion for reconsideration denied on August 11
Chrissie Bixler et al. v. Scientology and Danny Masterson: Sept 29 (CSI/RTC demurrer against Riales, Masterson demurrer), Oct 7-19 (motions to compel arbitration)
Jane Doe v. Scientology (in Miami): Jane Doe dismissed the lawsuit on May 15 after the Clearwater Police dropped their criminal investigation of her allegations.
Matt and Kathy Feschbach bankruptcy appeal: Oral arguments were heard on March 11 in Jacksonville
Brian Statler Sr v. City of Inglewood: Second amended complaint filed, trial set for Nov 9, 2021.
Author Steve Cannane defamation trial: Trial concluded, awaiting verdict.


Scientology’s celebrities, ‘Ideal Orgs,’ and more!

[The Big Three: Tom Cruise, John Travolta, and Kirstie Alley]

We’ve been building landing pages about David Miscavige’s favorite playthings, including celebrities and ‘Ideal Orgs,’ and we’re hoping you’ll join in and help us gather as much information as we can about them. Head on over and help us with links and photos and comments.

Scientology’s celebrities, from A to Z! Find your favorite Hubbardite celeb at this index page — or suggest someone to add to the list!

Scientology’s ‘Ideal Orgs,’ from one end of the planet to the other! Help us build up pages about each these worldwide locations!

Scientology’s sneaky front groups, spreading the good news about L. Ron Hubbard while pretending to benefit society!

Scientology Lit: Books reviewed or excerpted in our weekly series. How many have you read?



[ONE year ago] Hurricane Dorian’s destruction provides Scientology another chance at make-believe
[TWO years ago] New Scientology escape book ‘Perfectly Clear’ leaves some important questions unanswered
[THREE years ago] ‘Leah Remini’ show prompting more ‘ranch kids’ to come forward with agonizing family drama
[FOUR years ago] Drone footage of Scientology’s secretive Int Base: The reaction from former base employees
[FIVE years ago] More proof (from Scientology) that it’s never been a better time to be a Scientologist!
[SIX years ago] Lyman Spurlock, 1945-2014: Imprisoned and abused, a loyal Scientology executive to the end
[SEVEN years ago] The 1979 Clearwater Sun Editorial the Tampa Bay Times Should Run Today
[NINE years ago] A Scientology Countdown Announcement: Before We Start the Top Ten, a Programming Note


Scientology disconnection, a reminder

Bernie Headley (1952-2019) did not see his daughter Stephanie in his final 5,667 days.
Valerie Haney has not seen her mother Lynne in 2,054 days.
Katrina Reyes has not seen her mother Yelena in 2,558 days
Sylvia Wagner DeWall has not seen her brother Randy in 2,078 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his grandson Leo in 1,098 days.
Geoff Levin has not seen his son Collin and daughter Savannah in 989 days.
Christie Collbran has not seen her mother Liz King in 4,296 days.
Clarissa Adams has not seen her parents Walter and Irmin Huber in 2,164 days.
Carol Nyburg has not seen her daughter Nancy in 2,938 days.
Jamie Sorrentini Lugli has not seen her father Irving in 3,742 days.
Quailynn McDaniel has not seen her brother Sean in 3,058 days.
Dylan Gill has not seen his father Russell in 11,624 days.
Melissa Paris has not seen her father Jean-Francois in 7,543 days.
Valeska Paris has not seen her brother Raphael in 3,711 days.
Mirriam Francis has not seen her brother Ben in 3,292 days.
Claudio and Renata Lugli have not seen their son Flavio in 3,553 days.
Sara Goldberg has not seen her daughter Ashley in 2,591 days.
Lori Hodgson has not seen her son Jeremy and daughter Jessica in 2,304 days.
Marie Bilheimer has not seen her mother June in 1,829 days.
Charley Updegrove has not seen his son Toby in 1,359 days.
Joe Reaiche has not seen his daughter Alanna Masterson in 5,919 days
Derek Bloch has not seen his father Darren in 3,059 days.
Cindy Plahuta has not seen her daughter Kara in 3,379 days.
Roger Weller has not seen his daughter Alyssa in 8,234 days.
Claire Headley has not seen her mother Gen in 3,353 days.
Ramana Dienes-Browning has not seen her mother Jancis in 1,709 days.
Mike Rinder has not seen his son Benjamin and daughter Taryn in 6,012 days.
Brian Sheen has not seen his daughter Spring in 2,118 days.
Skip Young has not seen his daughters Megan and Alexis in 2,520 days.
Mary Kahn has not seen her son Sammy in 2,392 days.
Lois Reisdorf has not seen her son Craig in 1,975 days.
Phil and Willie Jones have not seen their son Mike and daughter Emily in 2,470 days.
Mary Jane Barry has not seen her daughter Samantha in 2,724 days.
Kate Bornstein has not seen her daughter Jessica in 13,833 days.


Posted by Tony Ortega on September 8, 2020 at 06:00

E-mail tips to tonyo94 AT gmail DOT com or follow us on Twitter. We also post updates at our Facebook author page. After every new story we send out an alert to our e-mail list and our FB page.

Our new book with Paulette Cooper, Battlefield Scientology: Exposing L. Ron Hubbard’s dangerous ‘religion’ is now on sale at Amazon in paperback and Kindle formats. Our book about Paulette, The Unbreakable Miss Lovely: How the Church of Scientology tried to destroy Paulette Cooper, is on sale at Amazon in paperback, Kindle, and audiobook versions. We’ve posted photographs of Paulette and scenes from her life at a separate location. Reader Sookie put together a complete index. More information can also be found at the book’s dedicated page.

The Best of the Underground Bunker, 1995-2019 Just starting out here? We’ve picked out the most important stories we’ve covered here at the Underground Bunker (2012-2019), The Village Voice (2008-2012), New Times Los Angeles (1999-2002) and the Phoenix New Times (1995-1999)

Other links: BLOGGING DIANETICS: Reading Scientology’s founding text cover to cover | UP THE BRIDGE: Claire Headley and Bruce Hines train us as Scientologists | GETTING OUR ETHICS IN: Jefferson Hawkins explains Scientology’s system of justice | SCIENTOLOGY MYTHBUSTING: Historian Jon Atack discusses key Scientology concepts | Shelly Miscavige, 14 years gone | The Lisa McPherson story told in real time | The Cathriona White stories | The Leah Remini ‘Knowledge Reports’ | Hear audio of a Scientology excommunication | Scientology’s little day care of horrors | Whatever happened to Steve Fishman? | Felony charges for Scientology’s drug rehab scam | Why Scientology digs bomb-proof vaults in the desert | PZ Myers reads L. Ron Hubbard’s “A History of Man” | Scientology’s Master Spies | The mystery of the richest Scientologist and his wayward sons | Scientology’s shocking mistreatment of the mentally ill | The Underground Bunker’s Official Theme Song | The Underground Bunker FAQ

Watch our short videos that explain Scientology’s controversies in three minutes or less…

Check your whale level at our dedicated page for status updates, or join us at the Underground Bunker’s Facebook discussion group for more frivolity.

Our non-Scientology stories: Robert Burnham Jr., the man who inscribed the universe | Notorious alt-right inspiration Kevin MacDonald and his theories about Jewish DNA | The selling of the “Phoenix Lights” | Astronomer Harlow Shapley‘s FBI file | Sex, spies, and local TV news | Battling Babe-Hounds: Ross Jeffries v. R. Don Steele


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