Sunday, February 17, 2019 | ePaper

Trump pushes out senior advisor at start of expected White House reshuffle

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In this file photo, White House Deputy National Security Advisor Mira Ricardel ® appears with US President Donald Trump at a Diwali ceremony as the office of first lady Melania Trump announced a request from the first lady that Ricardel be fired at the

AFP :
An angry Donald Trump pushed out a senior advisor Wednesday after First Lady Melania Trump demanded her sacking, with more heads set to roll in a White House reshuffle triggered by infighting and setbacks in the midterm elections. Melania Trump made the extremely rare demand for deputy national security advisor Mira Ricardel to be fired on Tuesday, saying "she no longer deserves the honor of serving in this White House."
The protocol-busting move followed a falling out that press leaks say was partly linked to a dispute over seating arrangements on the plane that took the first lady for a tour of African countries in October. Ricardel was also reportedly blamed for negative news coverage of Melania Trump.
The first lady at least partially got her way Wednesday when presidential spokeswoman Sarah Sanders announced that Ricardel "departs the White House to transition to a new role within the Administration."
The start to the second half of Donald Trump's first term is enveloped in gloom as the president surveys the damage from the midterms, tension with some of America's closest allies, and now turmoil inside the administration. On Wednesday, he was quoted by right-wing website The Daily Caller saying that a wider reshuffle is coming. "A lot of people want to come in, a lot of politicians who have had very successful careers want to come in," he said. The biggest name on the chopping block, according to multiple US media reports, is chief of staff John Kelly. A retired Marine Corps general, he has often been referred to as "the adult in the room" during Trump's drama-prone administration, even if critics say he has done little to temper the president's most damaging outbursts.

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