"Amazing, right?" Lewandowski said on the air. "Everything comes to an end."
The Trump campaign previously said it would honor a contract agreement to pay Lewandowski through the end of the year. (Update: the campaign now says it has paid out the rest of the money owed to Lewandowski, an estimated $80,000.)
Lewandowski might be off the Trump payroll, but he is determined to stay on message.
Late Wednesday, CNN reported that it had obtained a copy of Trump campaign talking points issued to surrogates, which include instructions to bring up Bill Clinton's marital infidelities — something Trump has praised himself for not doing during Monday's debate. On "New Day," Thursday morning, CNN anchor Alisyn Camerota confronted Lewandowski about the strategy.
CAMEROTA: It turns out that what you all are supposed to be talking about is basically talking more about Bill Clinton's past infidelities, as well as why Hillary Clinton was off the campaign trail for four days. Perhaps there is something wrong with her health. Really, Corey? Are these the things that Americans want to hear about? Why are these supposedly the talking points?LEWANDOWSKI: Well, I think if you look at the page A1 story in The Washington Post today, it talks about the infidelities of the Clinton administration and what role Hillary Clinton had specifically enabling that to take place. So these aren't the talking points of the Trump campaign; this is the A1 story, above the fold, of The Washington Post, who's talking about a 40-year history and specifically in that story references George Stephanopoulos, who at the time worked for the administration, who has quoted Hillary Clinton as saying, "We must destroy these women who are going after Bill."CAMEROTA: And the reason that The Washington Post did it is because it has come up again and again on the campaign trail, and they were trying to get to the bottom of what really happened.
Indeed, the story seeks to sort through Trump's characterization of Hillary Clinton as an "enabler" and the counter claim that she merely tried to defend her family and marriage.
And Lewandowski — deliberately or not — misquoted Stephanopoulos, who actually wrote in his memoir that Hillary Clinton responded in private to one woman's accusation by saying "we have to destroy her story" (emphasis added).
Later in his appearance on CNN Thursday, Lewandowski responded to a Newsweek report that Trump conducted business in Cuba when such dealings were prohibited by a trade embargo.
"There's absolutely no facts whatsoever that this took place," Lewandowski insisted, despite Newsweek's citing "interviews with former Trump executives, internal company records and court filings." "This is no different than a Secret Service agent giving a firsthand account of what Hillary Clinton is actually like and then being discredited, saying, 'Well, this didn't actually take place 'cause it's a firsthand account.' "
Actually, it is different. There are reasons to doubt the credibility of Gary Byrne, the Secret Service officer Lewandowski mentioned. The president of the Association of Former Agents of the United States Secret Service told Politico in June that Byrne was too low-ranking to have witnessed what he claimed in his book.
Regardless, Lewandowski was apparently following a script. As he spoke, Camerota looked at a piece of paper in her hand, laughed and remarked that Lewandowski had just hit "talking point No. 18 here in the Donald Trump memo."
Lewandowski is still doing Trump's bidding. He's just doing it for free now.