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Anthony Scaramucci’s Loyalty Didn’t Save Him

After defending the Trump administration with unparalleled zeal, the new White House communications director was fired 10 days into his tenure

(Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

Anthony Scaramucci lasted 10 days.

Monday afternoon, various news outlets, including The New York Times, reported that Scaramucci was removed from his post as the White House communications director. Scaramucci’s departure comes less than two weeks into his term, and just four days after Donald Trump’s most passionate lieutenant gave a furious interview to The New Yorker in which he outlined plans to purge the West Wing of the many leakers who have plagued the administration since Trump’s inauguration. While he promised even greater turnover in an administration wrecked by dramatic firings and resignations, Scaramucci burned out quicker than most, a thread in the grand tapestry of the apocalypse. He gave the Trump administration all he had, but in the end it either wasn’t enough, or — more likely — it was far too much.

(New York Post)
(New York Post)

In his impossibly brief tenure, Scaramucci expressed great hopes for the administration, pledging to reset the president’s relationship with the press. "I think there has been at times a disconnect between the way we see the president and how much we love the president, and the way some of you perhaps see the president," Scaramucci told the White House press corps in his inaugural briefing on July 21. A New York financier born and raised on Long Island, Scaramucci presented himself as Trump’s dogged hologram in the press. He sold his investment firm, SkyBridge Capital, to a Chinese conglomerate and RON Transatlantic. His wife filed for divorce, and he missed the birth of their youngest son on Monday in order to attend to Trump at the National Scout Jamboree on Tuesday. Since serving on the presidential transition team, Scaramucci overhauled his life to serve in Trump’s administration, which he did over the objections of senior staff. Ultimately, his spectacular loyalty to a notoriously fealty-obsessed president went unrewarded.

Scaramucci’s removal is effective immediately. It is unclear who will succeed him as White House communications director, and whether his departure will affect the broader reorganization of Trump’s communications team that has played out in recent weeks. The outgoing press secretary, Sean Spicer, and former chief of staff, Reince Priebus, both resigned in protest of Scaramucci’s appointment. While Priebus already has been replaced by retired Marine General John Kelly, who reportedly persuaded Trump to dump Scaramucci, it is unclear whether Spicer’s resignation will stand. Matthew Nussbaum, a White House reporter for Politico, found Spicer smiling outside as news of Scaramucci’s removal spread through media reports, creating another great shock among a press corps that has come to expect the unexpected.

Spicer, who is serving through August, has outlasted Scaramucci. So has Attorney General Jeff Sessions, whom Trump has publicly disparaged. Sessions has also been the subject of recent speculation of imminent termination due to the conflict regarding his recusal from the Justice Department’s investigation of Russian influence into the 2016 presidential election. It seems likely that Sessions will leave the administration sooner rather than later, whether he wants to or not, given the president’s express dissatisfaction with his performance. But there’s no telling who else will follow Sessions out the door, or — given the current pace of the administration’s unprecedented turnover — who else from Trump’s inner circle will beat him to it.