President Donald Trump on Thursday said a story about future staff changes at the White House was “very exaggerated” and “false” during a press availability with Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar in the Oval Office.
“Any more staff changes coming, sir?” a reporter asked.
“The story was very false,” Trump replied, without specifying the story to which he was referring. Fox News published “McMaster, Shulkin and Kelly could be next to go in White House, sources say” late Wednesday night.
“They wrote a story about staff changes today that was very false,” Trump continued. “We made a wonderful change. I think Mike Pompeo is going to be an incredible secretary of state.”
The President said that “there will always be change, but very little. It was a very false story,” again without specifying what he meant. “But there will always be change and I think you want to see change. And I want to also see different ideas. Larry Kudlow just came in a little while ago. And I think Larry is going to be outstanding as economic adviser.”
In fact, there have been many changes to senior White House staff in recent weeks: Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, chief economic adviser Gary Cohn, Communications Director Hope Hicks, senior communications aide Josh Raffel, speechwriter David Sorensen and staff secretary Rob Porter have all resigned or been fired in recent weeks.
On Tuesday, announcing Tillerson’s firing and his choice of CIA Director Mike Pompeo to replace him at the top of the State Department, Trump said: “I’m really at a point where we’re getting very close to having the Cabinet and other things that I want.”
This post has been updated.