Trump plan to oust Secretary of State Rex Tillerson with CIA Chief

U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson participates in a panel discussion after his remarks on U.S.-European Relations at the Wilson Center in Washington, U.S., November 28, 2017. REUTERS/Yuri Gripas
Vastavam web: President Donald Trump is considering a plan to oust Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, whose relationship has been strained by the top U.S. diplomat’s softer line on North Korea and other differences, senior administration officials said on Thursday.Republican Senator Tom Cotton, one of Trump’s staunchest defenders in Congress, would be tapped to replace Pompeo at the Central Intelligence Agency, the officials told Reuters, speaking on condition of anonymity.
It was not immediately clear whether Trump had given final approval to the reshuffle, but one of the officials said the president asked for the plan to be put together.Republican Senator Tom Cotton, one of Trump’s staunchest defenders in Congress, would be tapped to replace Pompeo at the Central Intelligence Agency, the officials told Reuters, speaking on condition of anonymity.
It was not immediately clear whether Trump had given final approval to the reshuffle, but one of the officials said the president asked for the plan to be put together.Under the plan, which has been in the works for weeks and was first reported by the New York Times, the reshuffle would happen around the end of the year or shortly afterward, the official said.Asked whether he wanted Tillerson to remain in his job, Trump sidestepped the question, telling reporters at the White House: “He’s here. Rex is here.”Asked about Tillerson, White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders said the secretary of state remained in his post. “When the president loses confidence in someone, they will no longer serve here,” she said.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. On several occasions, the president publicly undercut his diplomatic initiatives.
A source familiar with Tillerson’s thinking said the secretary of state’s original plan when he took the job was to leave in February.