Trump plans to replace Tillerson with Pompeo

Marsha Scott
December 1, 2017

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson (L) sits beside U.S. President Donald Trump during a cabinet meeting at the White House in Washington, U.S., November 1, 2017.

If he becomes US secretary of state, Mike Pompeo would have three assets Rex Tillerson did not: experience in government, the confidence of President Donald Trump, and a defter touch with Congress and the bureaucracy.

The nature of the reported change also suggests a change in the administration's focus, with Tillerson having, for instance, ruled out imposing regime change in North Korea, while Pompeo, said to be a Trump favorite recently, has openly advocated it.

Sarah Huckabee Sanders was torn apart by Morning Joe today after her "stunning" defense of President Trump's tweeting of unverified Islamophobic videos.

The White House says Rex Tillerson continues to lead the State Department.

Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) would replace Pompeo in Foggy Bottom, according to the officials who wished to remain anonymous before the decisions are announced.

While acknowledging leaking the plan to journalist might be designed as an overt "signal to [Tillerson] that it is time to go", the Times reports that the "shake-up of the national security team", apparently being orchestrated by White House Chief of Staff John Kelly, "would happen around the end of the year or shortly afterward".

Trump plans to replace Tillerson with Pompeo

That comment came just three days after Tillerson held an extraordinary news conference last month to shoot down reports that he had called the president a moron. "I serve at the appointment of the president and I am here as long as the president feels I can be useful to achieving his objectives".

Tillerson's aloof management style and cost-saving plan to restructure the State Department, including slashing around 2,000 positions, has not helped his popularity. Tillerson has been overtly refusing to take Trump's hostile line on North Korea.

Mr. Trump has been publicly frustrated with his top diplomat.

When Tillerson in June called on Arab nations to ease their blockade on Qatar, Trump emerged in the Rose Garden hours later to lambaste Qatar for funding terrorism. Tillerson's advice to Trump to stay in the Paris climate deal and certify Iran's compliance with the nuclear deal was similarly overruled.

But the White House's tentative plans to replace Pompeo at the Central Intelligence Agency with Sen.

Several administration officials said that Pompeo has said previously he's open to the job.

"There has never been a consideration in my mind to leave", Tillerson said.

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Other reports by MaliBehiribAe

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