Former Goldman Sachs COO Gary Cohn has decided to resign from the White House on Tuesday, after losing an internal battle on trade policy at the White House.
The news was first reported by the New York Times.
After helping usher massive tax cuts across the finish line, Cohn signaled interest in remaining at the White House — and even spoke to the president about possibly replacing Gen. John Kelly as chief of staff, according to the report.
Instead, he is leaving in the face of Trump’s tough actions on trade.
“Gary has been my chief economic adviser and did a superb job in driving our agenda, helping to deliver historic tax cuts and reforms and unleashing the American economy once again,” Trump said in a statement. “He is a rare talent, and I thank him for his dedicated service to the American people.”
Cohn was an early hire for Trump’s administration, as the president wanted a “killer” in his administration who was good at closing deals. Although a Democrat, Cohn chose to the join the administration to advise the president on fostering good policy for business and the economy.
“I am grateful to the President for giving me this opportunity and wish him and the Administration great success in the future,” Cohn said in a statement.
Although Cohn threatened to resign in the wake of Trump’s controversial comments about protestors in Charlottesville, Virginia, he remained in the White House to help push forward tax reform
Cohn again threatened to resign after Trump announced his proposed tariffs on aluminum and steel on Thursday, but it appears the president was not concerned.
“People will always come and go, and I want strong dialogue before making a final decision,” he wrote on Twitter Tuesday morning. “I still have some people that I want to change (always seeking perfection).”
The news of Cohn’s resignation broke right after Trump told reporters that he was ready for some staffers to leave the White House, but that it was an exciting place to work with many coveted positions.
“Believe me, everybody wants to work in the White House,” he said at a press conference. “They all want a piece of the Oval Office, they want a piece of the West Wing.”
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