Tillerson and Trump: Star-crossed from the Start
- Author: Ronnie Bowen Mar 14, 2018,
Mar 14, 2018, 5:58
A career State Department diplomat fired by President Donald Trump early in his administration had words of encouragement and advice for newly-ousted Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on Tuesday afternoon.
Nearly from the get-go, Tillerson, the former CEO of Irving-based Exxon Mobil, seemed out of sorts and out of step with his mercurial boss.
A senior White House official said the president wanted to reshuffle his team with a view to launching talks with North Korea, following last week's spectacular announcement of a meeting between Trump and Kim Jong Un.
"Mike Pompeo, Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, will become our new Secretary of State". "When Mike is over in, say, the Koreas or over dealing with Russian Federation or the Middle East, I think people are going to know that he speaks for the president". "I think it's important we just continue to say to Russia, 'Look, you think we don't see what you're doing".
Daniel Russel, the top US diplomat for East Asia and the Pacific until last April and now at the Asia Society Policy Institute, said Tillerson's replacement by Pompeo could be positive for dialogue with North Korea.
"Would you define this White House as stable?" a reporter followed up. The fact is that in many ways Tillerson - despite being a former ExxonMobil chief executive who had never served in government - represents the very Washington establishment that Trump showers with contempt.
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They're expected to reconvene the following day for a special session on several other issues. That bill would likely be very similar to the budget submitted to the current session by Gov.
"The secretary had every intention of remaining because of the tangible progress made on critical national security issues". Hours later, he was sacked, too.
Tillerson also likely took a jab at Trump by praising his State personnel for recently addressing "challenges of sexual harassment within the department". After hours of bureaucratic tug-of-war, Tillerson, in his final somber turn before the cameras, said he would be delegating his responsibilities to deputy secretary John Sullivan at the end of the workday and would resign effective at the end of the month. The White House stated that Tillerson had been informed of the president's decision last Friday, but Goldstein's dispute of that claim and the close proximity to Tillerson's firing to his Russian Federation remarks fuel speculation that his comments on Monday contributed to his termination.
Pompeo "holds a stance of pushing ahead with the U.S".
The President clarified his decisions in an official statement. His stance created another messaging problem for a White House that has often struggled to project a united front.
Blessing said he believes the move also adds ammunition for the president's critics. Top economic adviser Gary Cohn announced his resignation last week, not long after communications director Hope Hicks and staff secretary Rob Porter both departed near the start of Trump's second year in office.
Hamline University professor David Schultzin said Pompeo replacing Tillerson is not surprising, noting Trump favors a more militaristic or hardline approach to foreign policy over the "soft power" of diplomacy. Trump is also said to respect Pompeo's military background and West Point pedigree.