Deputy National Security Adviser Dina Powell will leave President Donald Trump’s administration early next year to return home to New York to be close to her family, according to a senior administration official.
Powell had promised the president to finish the National Security Strategy, which is due out later this month. She remains “close to the president” and will continue to advise him on the Middle East from the outside, the official said.
She will accompany Vice President Mike Pence on his trip to the Middle East later this month.
Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) praised Powell and said her departure is a loss for the president.
“She’s been a trusted adviser to the president, and she’s helped structure and organize the National Security Council policy-making process and the interagency process. Although it was well-known she would leave after a year because her family has stayed in New York this past year, it’s still a loss for the president,” Cotton said in a phone interview with Breitbart News.
He also said her decision to leave had nothing to do with President Trump’s decision to move the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem.
“No, not at all,” he said. “When Dina agreed to come into the government a year ago, she was very explicit with the president and his senior team that it could only be for a year. … It’s coming to the end of a year, and I know she feels very strongly about being a good mother. It was pre-planned and expected. In terms of other departures, I don’t know.”
Before joining the administration, Powell spent ten years on Wall Street. She first came into the Trump administration as an assistant to the president and senior counselor for economic initiatives.
Powell, an Egyptian-American who was born in Cairo, migrated to Texas when she was four and worked in the former George W. Bush administration and in Congress on defense and foreign policy issues.
Powell accompanied Defense Secretary Jim Mattis on a trip to Egypt this year and helped secure the release of an American hostage.