Anthony Scaramucci was fired as White House communications director on Monday, The New York Times first reported. Scaramucci, a former hedge fund manager from Long Island known as “Mooch,” was hired just 10 days ago, on July 21, and quickly set to work to rid the West Wing of leakers. Press Secretary Sean Spicer resigned immediately following his hiring, followed by the senior assistant press secretary, Michael Short, and then Chief of Staff Reince Priebus.
The Times reports that Scaramucci has been fired at the request of John F. Kelly, President Donald Trump’s new chief of staff, who started work Monday morning.
Scaramucci was criticized by LifeZette Editor-in-Chief Laura Ingraham and by former Reagan communications director Pat Buchanan for his foul-mouthed rant to New Yorker reporter Ryan Lizza, with Buchanan saying it would be a “hard thing” for the White House to recover from.
At a packed White House press briefing on Monday afternoon, press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders told reporters that Trump was disturbed by the language Scaramucci used in the inadvertent interview with The New Yorker.
Some reporters chuckled, given Trump’s use of salty language himself. But Sanders said a White House official should not speak to anyone the way Scaramucci did.
In the late-night phone call with reporter Ryan Lizza on Thursday night, Scaramucci called then Chief of Staff Reince Priebus a “f**king paranoid schizophrenic.” But Scaramucci also targeted Steve Bannon, one of the president’s top advisers and a hero to Trump’s populist conservative base, saying, “I’m not Steve Bannon, I’m not trying to suck my own c***.”
Speculation shot across social media that Scaramucci had been brought on to speed up the pressure on Priebus to resign, not just to plug leaks in the troubled communications office.
“He sounded like Linda Blair in ‘The Exorcist,'” said Ann Coulter, speaking on Fox News on Monday afternoon. “We only need one potty-mouth in the White House.”
Sanders said Monday that the president felt that Scaramucci’s comments “were inappropriate for a person in that position” and “didn’t want to burden Kelly with that line of succession.”
She said that Scaramucci “does not have a role at this time” in the Trump administration.
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