If a new report from The Hill is to be believed, one of the top members of President Donald Trump’s cabinet will be departing the administration shockingly early.
It’s not confirmed, of course, but it seems sources “familiar with [Rex Tillerson’s] conversations with friends outside Washington” have allegedly told CNN that the Secretary of State and former ExxonMobil CEO has grown increasingly frustrated with his boss and may be considering a resignation before the end of the year:
Tillerson reportedly agreed with Trump critics who thought it was unprofessional when the president lashed out last week at Attorney General Jeff Sessions because he recused himself from the investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election.
Trump referred to Sessions as “beleaguered” in a Monday morning tweet and has reportedly floated the idea of replacing him with former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani (R).
What are we to make of all this? Time will tell whether it’s true, but even the most ardent Trump fan should admit Tillerson’s got a point that it’s unseemly to publicly attack your own subordinates rather than address whatever problems you have with them privately, even when the the underlying gripe is correct (as Trump’s was in this case). It’s simply not good for cultivating unity and morale among the people working to carry out your agenda, and will inevitably cause other Cabinet heads to wonder whether they can expect the same if they stay.
On the bright side, Tillerson was always an odd fit to run the State Department, lacking a particularly conservative record or clear signs he had what it takes to stand up to the United Nations. If he does step down, perhaps it will clear the way for the Secretary of State that President Trump should have had by his side from the beginning: John Bolton, with the end result being the effective implementation of an American foreign policy that balances America’s sovereignty, national interests, and the prudence necessary that neither isolationism nor adventurism are the right path for achieving either.
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