President Donald Trump said Thursday that he will “weed out” individuals inside his administration who he does not like, echoing remarks from his wife, who told ABC News that there are people working for her husband who she does not trust.
During a live phone interview Thursday morning with Fox News’ “Fox & Friends,” the president said “it was more true” in the past, when he was first establishing himself in Washington, that he distrusted members of his administration. But he cited U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley, who announced her resignation this week, as an example of the “great people” who now fill his administration.
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Trump said he would do away with those he does not like.
“Are there some I’m not in love with? Yes. We’ll weed them out slowly,” the president said.
Trump also identified Secretary of State Mike Pompeo as “a star” of his administration, specifically highlighting his negotiations with North Korea. Trump unceremoniously fired Pompeo’s predecessor, Rex Tillerson, last spring amid reportedly simmering tensions between Trump and Tillerson and rumors Tillerson had called the president a “f—— moron.”
Still, the president said there are some he would prefer to see leave the administration, though he did not offer any names. When asked about rumors of a search to replace Attorney General Jeff Sessions, whom the president has lambasted for recusing himself from the investigation into Russian involvement in the 2016 election, Trump said he was currently focusing on the midterm elections and not on finding a replacement for Sessions.
Melania Trump was more direct in her negative opinions about some in the administration. ABC’s Tom Llamas, who spoke to the first lady during her trip to Africa, asked her about rumors that she was the White House “gatekeeper,” dictating to the president whom he should and shouldn’t allow into the administration. He also asked her whether there are people in the administration she doesn’t trust.
She responded flatly: “Yes.”
“I give him my honest advice and honest opinions, then he does what he wants to do,” she told Llamas.