Craig Deare, who served as a senior National Security Council aide for Western Hemisphere Affairs, was sacked from his role after criticizing President Donald Trump's policies.
According to Politico, the incident was also marked by a “embarrassing readout” of Trump's call with Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto.
During a briefing in West Palm Beach, Florida, White House spokesperson Sarah Sanders said that staffers who criticized the president's agenda had no place in his administration. Having someone on the team who isn't “supportive of what you are trying to accomplish,” she added, seems “pretty silly.”
In January, Peña Nieto announced he wouldn't meet with Trump after Trump threatened to cancel a series of upcoming meetings if Mexico failed to agree to pay for a wall dividing both countries. In less than 24 hours, both leaders spoke on the phone in an attempt to avoid a diplomatic crisis. At the time, Trump called the hour-long call a very “friendly” one.
During the off-the-record meeting in which Deare offered his input on Trump's approach to Latin America, Deare also criticized Trump's chief strategist, Steve Bannon, complaining about the “paralyzing dysfunction” of the Trump White House. Part of his complaints stemmed from the fact that senior national security aides don't have access to the president, Politico added.
Despite the publicity this abrupt termination is receiving, this is not the first time the Trump administration has let go of a senior official for negative comments regarding the president.
On Wednesday, Shermichael Singleton, a senior aide to Trump's housing secretary nominee, Ben Carson, was fired and subsequently escorted out of the department headquarters after an op-ed he had written prior to the election surfaced. In the article, the official criticized Trump.
Trump may have thought he was doing the right thing by firing Deare, but he must come to terms with the fact that he hurts his image even further anytime he acts as an intolerant boss.
Sometimes, inviting constructive criticism helps leadership to arrive at better, more sound policies. Only time will tell if anyone within his administration will be able to make him understand that fact.