Trump Administration: Notable Departures So Far

The Trump administration has seen a series of high-profile departures in its first eight months – and that includes a quick succession of four people over the summer.

Here’s a look at who’s already come and gone from inside and outside President Donald Trump’s White House, from those who quit, like the short-lived former press secretary Sean Spicer, to those who were pushed out, like Tom Price, who just resigned as Health and Human Services secretary.

Within the White House

Steve Bannon

The White House chief strategist relinquished his post on Aug. 18, the press secretary said in a statement. Bannon was a key campaign adviser and a forceful but contentious presence in the White House. The former leader of conservative Breitbart News (who returned there) pushed Trump to follow through with his campaign promises. But he also sparred with some of Trump’s closest advisers, including son-in-law Jared Kushner. His exit came amid tension over Trump’s comments blaming both sides in the clash between white supremacists and counterprotesters in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Anthony Scaramucci

“The Mooch” came and went in just 10 days. The White House confirmed July 31 that he was ousted as communications director. “Mr. Scaramucci felt it was best to give Chief of Staff John Kelly a clean slate and the ability to build his own team,” Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said in a statement. Scaramucci, a Port Washington-raised financier, gave an expletive-filled interview to The New Yorker the week before in which he called Reince Priebus a “paranoid schizophrenic” and disparaged the president’s chief strategist Steve Bannon.

Reince Priebus

When President Donald Trump’s first chief of staff lost his job, the world found out about it on Twitter. That’s where Trump named Priebus’ replacement, Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly, on July 28. So ended a tumultuous six-month tenure for Priebus, a former head of the Republican National Committee, who was widely seen as a weak chief of staff amid White House infighting. “We accomplished a lot together and I am proud of him!” Trump tweeted about Priebus.

Sean Spicer

The White House press secretary suddenly quit on July 21, after Trump named Anthony Scaramucci as communications director. Spicer objected to Scaramucci’s hiring, news reports said. Spicer’s short run was marked by testy and even combative exchanges with the press at daily briefings, while Melissa McCarthy memorably lampooned him on “Saturday Night Live.” Like Priebus, Spicer hailed from the RNC.

Michael Flynn

Flynn resigned after three and a half weeks as national security adviser, on Feb. 13, after reports that he discussed U.S. sanctions with the Russian ambassador to the U.S. before Trump took office. Trump asked Flynn to resign because he misled Vice President Mike Pence about his late December call with the ambassador, Spicer said. Former acting Attorney General Sally Yates later testified that she warned the White House that Flynn “could be blackmailed” by Russia.

Michael Dubke

Trump’s first White House communications director resigned in May, serving his final day on June 2. Dubke founded Crossroads Media, a Republican firm that specializes in political advertising. Dubke wasn’t the first person hired for the job – that would be Jason Miller, who backed out before Trump took office.

Katie Walsh

The deputy chief of staff said March 30 that was she was leaving her post to join America First Policies, a pro-Trump outside group. Walsh said she decided to do that after the first attempt to repeal Obamacare during the Trump presidency failed in the House – where too many Republicans opposed it.

Outside the White House

Tom Price

The Health and Human Services secretary resigned Sept. 29, after his costly travel triggered investigations that overshadowed the administration’s agenda and angered his boss. Price was found to have used private charter jets for official trips, when cheaper commercial flights were available. Trump had said publicly he was “not happy” with Price over the practice. Price is the first member of the president’s Cabinet to be pushed out.

Preet Bharara (along with 45 U.S. attorneys)

The Manhattan U.S. attorney was fired after he refused to resign – announcing his own termination on Twitter on March 11. Attorney General Jeff Sessions had demanded the resignations of Bharara and 45 other Obama-appointed federal prosecutors the day before. Several of the 46 were given months-long extensions, including Connecticut’s U.S. attorney, who is staying on until October.

James Comey

Trump’s firing of the FBI director shocked the nation on May 9 – with rippling effects for his presidency since. Trump told NBC News “this Russia thing” – which he called “a made-up story” – was on his mind when he decided to fire Comey, as the FBI investigated Russian interference in the presidential election. Comey told the Senate Intelligence Committee he was fired to change “the way the Russia investigation was being conducted.”

Sally Yates

Trump fired the acting attorney general on Jan. 30 after she ordered Department of Justice lawyers to stop defending his executive order issued on Jan. 27, one week into his presidency, banning travel from seven Muslim-majority nations. A White House statement accused Yates of betraying “the Department of Justice by refusing to enforce a legal order designed to protect the citizens of the United States.”