Asked Thursday whether Tillerson should stay from the job, Trump only said the secretary of state is actually “here.” In a statement later, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders did not deny the reports about a plan to replace Tillerson nevertheless said “there are no personnel announcements at of which time.”
“Secretary Tillerson continues to lead the State Department along with the entire cabinet is actually focused on completing of which incredibly successful first year of President Trump’s administration,” she said.
Later Thursday, State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert pointed reporters to the White House statement an added of which Tillerson “enjoys the job.” Tillerson is actually “committed” to his duties along with is actually continuing scheduled meetings along with calls, she said.
Kelly called the agency earlier Thursday to say the reports were not true, Nauert added.
Reports for months have painted a picture of a tense working relationship between the president along with his top diplomat. In October, NBC News reported of which Tillerson considered leaving the job along with called Trump a “moron” during the summer.
The secretary of State then delivered a remarkable, unscheduled statement in which he insisted he “never considered leaving.”
Tillerson, 65, joined the Trump administration after serving as chief executive of Exxon Mobil. He has overseen the Trump administration’s dramatic overhaul of the State Department, marked by budget cuts along with unfilled jobs.
Pompeo, 53, served as a congressman via Kansas before heading the CIA.
Cotton, a 40-year-old Army veteran, first won his Senate seat in 2014. In a statement to CNBC, Cotton’s office said his “focus is actually on serving Arkansans from the Senate.”
If the senator leaves office, Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson could pick a successor to serve until the 2018 general elections.