Spicer: Trump Has ‘Utmost Confidence’ In Nat’l Security Adviser H.R. McMaster

President Donald Trump's White House Senior Adviser Steve Bannon, left, and National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster, right, arrive for a news conference with President Donald Trump and NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg in the East Room at the White House, Wednesday, April 12, 2017, in Washington. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)
Andrew Harnik/AP

President Donald Trump “values” the counsel of National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster, the White House said Tuesday, despite an article that cited two unnamed sources quoting Trump saying the opposite.

Bloomberg’s Eli Lake reported Monday that Trump had said that McMaster, who took the place of the ousted Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn in his position, was “the general undermining my policy.” Lake reported that McMaster’s star was beginning to dim in Trump World.

Did the President say that?” one reported asked Spicer, referring to the quote in Lake’s piece, which was sourced to “two White House officials.”

“I don’t believe he has,” Spicer said. “I mean, I think when you look at the President’s schedule this week, as I just noted to Sara a little while ago, there’s probably no one aside from family members that are spending more time with the President this week than Gen. McMaster.”

“He values his counsel,” he continued. “He continues to be extremely pleased with his pick and his performance as national security adviser. He has the utmost confidence in him.”

Earlier, the press secretary said Trump had an “excellent” relationship with McMaster.

However, the Trump administration has a poor track record when it comes to publicly forecasting the careers of White House officials. Lake noted in his article Monday that top White House aide Kellyanne Conway said that Flynn had Trump’s full confidence only hours before he was forced to resign.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Matt Shuham is a news writer for TPM. He was previously assistant editor of The National Memo and managing editor of the Harvard Political Review. He is available by email at mshuham@talkingpointsmemo.com and on Twitter @mattshuham.
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