President Donald Trump ripped former Secretary of State Rex Tillerson for criticizing him in a recent public appearance, in a Friday afternoon tweet.
Mike Pompeo is doing a great job, I am very proud of him. His predecessor, Rex Tillerson, didn’t have the mental capacity needed. He was dumb as a rock and I couldn’t get rid of him fast enough. He was lazy as hell. Now it is a whole new ballgame, great spirit at State!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 7, 2018
The president had a fraught relationship with the former secretary of state and Exxon CEO during his short tenure in office. The former secretary of state denounced rumors that he had once called the president a “moron” leading to a presidential IQ test challenge. Trump also undercut Tillerson’s statements publicly, disagreeing with him via Twitter.
I told Rex Tillerson, our wonderful Secretary of State, that he is wasting his time trying to negotiate with Little Rocket Man…
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 1, 2017
Trump elevated CIA Director Mike Pompeo to the role and has expressed great confidence in his actions.
Mike Pompeo, Director of the CIA, will become our new Secretary of State. He will do a fantastic job! Thank you to Rex Tillerson for his service! Gina Haspel will become the new Director of the CIA, and the first woman so chosen. Congratulations to all!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 13, 2018
Tillerson made his first public appearance since being fired at a hospital fundraiser Thursday evening saying that he often clashed with the president over the legality of his demands. “So often, the president would say here’s what I want to do and here’s how I want to do it and I would have to say to him, Mr. President I understand what you want to do but you can’t do it that way. It violates the law,” Tillerson explained.
Tillerson continued, “I will be honest with you, it troubles me that the American people seem to want to know so little about issues, that they are satisfied with a 128 characters,” lamenting, “I don’t want that to come across as a criticism of him … It’s really a concern that I have about us as Americans and us as a society and us as citizens.”