Emotional ‘Pass The Torch’ Meeting Held After Trump Dumped Parscale

Trump 2020 campaign manager Brad Parscale is seen before the start of a rally by President Donald Trump at Landers Center in Southaven, Mississippi, on October 2, 2018. (MANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty Images)
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July 16, 2020 2:47 p.m.

The Trump campaign held a brief but emotional meeting Thursday where outgoing campaign manager Brad Parscale passed the torch to his successor, Bill Stepien, according to Politico.

The meeting came the morning after Trump abruptly announced the shakeup, which reportedly caught the President’s family off guard.

On Wednesday night, Trump announced in a tweet that Parscale would be replaced by deputy campaign manager Stepien. The President tweeted that Parscale will remain on the team as a “senior advisor” to Trump’s re-election campaign.

According to a Politico report on Thursday, two attendees of the “pass the torch” ceremony between Parscale and Stepien at the Trump campaign’s Arlington, Virginia headquarters described the 20-minute meeting as “emotional.” Politico reported that two attendees noted that campaign leaders tried to convey the notion that the shakeup “represented continuity” for Trump’s re-election campaign.

The two attendees told Politico that Parscale thanked the roughly 200 or so campaign staffers at the meeting and spoke highly of Stepien for his political skills. Stepien pushed for aides to ignore reports that Trump was losing to Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden in the polls and to ramp up its efforts in the last few months heading into the general election.

Two people with knowledge of the Trump family’s reaction to the shakeup told Politico that they were blindsided by it and described Parscale as being “deeply hurt.” Parscale is set to return home to Florida where he will focus on data, digital and advertising roles of the Trump campaign. It is unclear how involved he will now be in the day-t0-day activities of the campaign.

On Wednesday afternoon, Parscale tweeted a biblical verse just hours after the reportedly emotional transition meeting with Stepien.

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