White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders on Thursday would not say whether President Donald Trump has confidence in White House chief of staff Reince Priebus.
“Look, I think I’ve addressed this question when it comes to staffing and personnel many times, that if the President doesn’t, then he’ll make that decision,” Sanders said during an on-camera White House press briefing.
She said White House staffers “all serve at the pleasure of the President, and if it gets to a place where that isn’t the case, he’ll let you know.”
Pressed on whether she could speak to Trump’s confidence in Priebus, who newly minted White House communications director Anthony Scaramucci appeared to knife on Thursday morning, Sanders demurred.
“Look, I think what we have — this is a White House that has a lot of different perspectives, because the President hires the very best people,” she said. “They’re not always going to agree.”
Sanders said Trump likes to encourage competition between his employees.
“There are going to be a lot of different ideas. Unlike previous administrations, this isn’t groupthink,” she said. “We all come and have a chance to voice those ideas, voice those perspectives and have a lot of healthy competition, and with that competition you usually get the best results. The President likes that type of competition and encourages it.”
Scaramucci on Thursday appeared to accuse Priebus of leaking his publicly available financial disclosure form to the press and said he would contact the FBI and Justice Department about the non-existent “felony.”
Asked whether Trump thinks Priebus is leaking to the press, Sanders said she was “not going to comment on Anthony’s suggestion.”
“I’ll let him answer for himself,” she said. “I think I made pretty clear where the President is, and I don’t have anything to add beyond that.”