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Trump May Have Just Been Hit With Another Massive White House Resignation

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At this point, it is pretty much a cliché that so many people are resigning from the White House and administration of President Donald Trump. He has scarcely been in office for two years and his staff turnover has been insanely high, to the point that it looks like some kind of cartoon farce, rather than the office of the President of the United States and leader of the free world. Now, things might be about to get a whole lot worse, as two of the most senior – and most publicly visible – faces threaten to quit. And they are not likely to go quietly. CBS News reports:

Two of the most visible members of the Trump administration are planning their departures, the latest sign of upheaval in a White House marked by turmoil. Press secretary Sarah Sanders and principal deputy press secretary Raj Shah are both heading for the exits, according to sources inside the White House and close to the administration. Sanders, who has become a confidante of President Trump since the departure of former communications director Hope Hicks, has told friends that she plans to leave the administration at the end of the year.

Shah is also considering his exit, but he has not yet settled on an exact date. Neither Sanders nor Shah responded to repeated requests for comment before this story was published. When reached, both declined to comment on the record, and Sanders tweeted that she is “honored to work for @POTUS.”Sanders’ tweet read: “Does @CBSNews know something I don’t about my plans and my future? I was at my daughter’s year-end Kindergarten event and they ran a story about my “plans to leave the WH” without even talking to me. I love my job and am honored to work for @POTUS

Several other lower-level positions in the communications department left vacant in recent weeks are likely to remain unfilled, with more departures expected in the coming weeks, according to a former official.Numerous staffers have left the White House over the last several months, some voluntarily and others having been forced out. Those departures include Hicks; Chief of Staff John Kelly; Jared Kushner’s top communications aide, Josh Raffel; homeland security adviser Tom Bossert; National Security Council spokesman Michael Anton; Trump personal aide John McEntee; director of White House message strategy Cliff Simms; communications aide Steven Cheung; congressional communications director Kaelan Dorr; assistant press secretary Natalie Strom; and deputy director of media affairs Tyler Ross.

Over the course of the Trump administration, the White House has consolidated its workforce, eliminating jobs and assigning multiple portfolios of responsibility to individual staffers. Some positions have never been filled. Despite the smaller number of positions, the record-setting turnover rate has not slowed. Less than halfway through Mr. Trump’s term, the turnover rate stands at 51 percent, according to the Brookings Institution. Turnover during Mr. Trump’s first year in office was 34 percent — nearly four times higher than turnover during the first year of the Obama administration.

“There will be even more people leaving the White House sooner rather than later, laid off or just leaving out of exhaustion. And it is going to be harder to find good people to replace them,” a source close to the administration told CBS News. “I do think they’re going to have a harder time getting the second wave of people in than the first, because those people were loyalists, and [new] folks will have to be recruited and encouraged and then survive the vetting process. In addition to all of that, the president prefers to have a small communications staff.”

Kathryn Dunn Tenpas, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution who has studied turnover dating back to the Reagan administration, published a report that tracks senior-level departures of the Trump administration compared to previous presidencies. She told CBS News that the sheer number of top-level exits indicates a troubling inconsistency in the ranks of those who see the president on a regular basis. If the White House were a private-sector business, Tenpas said the level of turnover among senior staffers would result in the “stock and shareholders … going nuts.”

At this stage, these are basically just rumors from anonymous sources, but given the recent history of American politics and everything we have learned already about President Donald Trump and his style of governance and lack of basic management skills, it would hardly be a massive surprise if all this does turn out to be true. Could this be the thing that finally tips this administration over the edge? Might this be the feather that breaks the camel’s back?


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