The president seemed none too happy with his secretary of state during an exclusive interview with Forbes.
That and more was revealed after Forbes interviewed Trump for an hour in the Oval Office. The outlet published their interview with Trump on Tuesday morning.
The choice section of a lengthy interview?
[Trump] counterpunches, in this case firing a shot at Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who reportedly called his boss a moron: “I think it’s fake news, but if he did that, I guess we’ll have to compare IQ tests. And I can tell you who is going to win.”
Trump addressed Tillerson at least once more in the interview, according to Forbes.
In any situation, Trump must be the alpha dog. Delegation isn’t his strong suit. Witness what happened when Tillerson apparently reopened a dialogue with the North Koreans. “He was wasting his time,” Trump now says. But doesn’t publicly upbraiding his top diplomat effectively neuter him? “I’m not undermining,” Trump says. “I think I’m actually strengthening authority.” It’s hard to see whose authority he’s strengthening, other than his own.
Other highlights from the interview, which anyone following Trump should read in full:
- Trump left the door open to dealing with Democrats on health care: “I think the Democrats want to make a deal”
- Trump never intended to lower the corporate tax rate to 15 percent; that was a negotiating tactic to get to 20 percent: “As you know, this will be a negotiation for the next 30 days. But I wanted the 15 in order to get to 20”
- Trump may soon introduce a bill that rewards companies for “keep[ing] jobs in America” and punishes those who outsource jobs
It’s Trump’s most substantive interview in awhile. Read it here.
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