White House press secretary Sean Spicer is resigning his position, according to two people with knowledge of the decision.
One of those people said Spicer is quitting because of objections over the appointment of a new White House communications director, New York financier Anthony Scaramucci.
The people with knowledge of the decision insisted on anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the personnel matter publicly.
The New York Times reports that a person with “direct knowledge” of an exchange between Spicer and President Trump said Spicer “vehemently” objects to the appointment of Scaramucci and refused to stay on despite Trump’s request for him to do so.
Scaramucci was promised a role in the White House after the one initial promised to him, that of outreach to the business community, was abruptly rescinded.
Scaramucci, who served on the Presidential Transition Team Executive Committee, also made headlines when he said that Elton John was going to play at Trump’s inauguration, a claim that had no merit. He also claimed Trump was going to be “the first American president in U.S. history that enters the White House with a pro-gay rights stance.”
Trump’s actions so far beg to differ, as he has appointed a host of anti-LGBTQ Cabinet members, proposed massive cuts to HIV/AIDS funding, failed to issue a pride month proclamation, rescinded transgender student protections, and is overseeing a federal government attacking civil rights enforcement at all levels.
He has criticized “political correctness” but has also stated he supports LGBTQ rights.
“I’m also a gay rights activist,” Scaramucci said in November. “You can look it up. I’ve given to American Unity PAC, I’ve given to the Human Rights Campaign, I’m for marriage equality.”
“Sean Spicer’s resignation today should show the nation that it’s nearly impossible to defend President Trump and his administration’s toxic agenda,” said Sarah Kate Ellis, President and CEO of GLAAD.