Monday, 10 December, 2018

White House says Tillerson to remain as secretary of state

White House says Tillerson to remain as secretary of state White House says Tillerson to remain as secretary of state
Kenny Thornton | 01 December, 2017, 10:39

Under the plan, Republican Senator Tom Cotton would be tapped to replace Mr Pompeo at the Central Intelligence Agency, the New York Times reported, citing senior officials.

"There has been a kind of Cold War going on between these two", Wallace noted, adding there has seemed to be a rift between Trump and Tillerson on handling North Korea.

Mr Tillerson has also defended the Iran nuclear deal, which Mr Trump last month disavowed. Tillerson, she said, is continuing in his role, including preparing for an imminent trip to Europe.

Tillerson, 65, has spent much of his tenure trying to smooth the rough edges of Trump's unilateralist "America First" foreign policy, with limited success.

When Tillerson was tapped for the job late previous year, many Trump critics expressed quiet relief that he'd picked a sober "adult" who could form a counterweight to the president's brasher, impulsive approach, especially on critical matters of war and peace. "He serves at the pleasure of the president". The secretary was reported to have privately called Mr. Trump a "moron" and the president publicly criticized Mr. Tillerson for "wasting his time" with a diplomatic outreach to North Korea.

Beyoncé and Ed Sheeran Are Releasing a Love Song Together
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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. Arkansas law also mandates that the appointee is not allowed to run for that same seat in the following election. If Cotton stays in the Senate, his current term doesn't end until 2020.

Several State Department officials said they hoped that Pompeo's arrival would mean the end for handful of top Tillerson aides whom many blame for keeping the secretary isolated.

Shortly after the news broke, Trump was peppered by reporters about the veracity of the story at the White House.

"This is pure speculation", said White House spokesman Raj Shah in an emailed statement about potential staff moves.

Tillerson's future came up in the Oval Office earlier this month at a meeting in which White House officials closest to the president agreed the Texan should go - and soon - said one individual who consults regularly with the administration.

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