Putin Fires Tillerson

Putin Fires Tillerson

News is just out that Rex Tillerson has been replaced by Mike Pompeo as Secretary of State. 

Of course, we had predicted Tillerson’s ouster for some time, and had indicated late in 2017 that Tillerson was waiting for his deferment of all of his capital gains for his sale of Exxon stock pursuant to section 2634 of Federal Ethics laws (also known as the Certificate of Divesture).  Trump was polite enough to wait until Tillerson had completed the 12 months of service for full vesting.

Had it not been for the Certificate of Divestiture, Tillerson might have been out a lot earlier.  He had advocated against leaving the Paris Climate Accords.   He had also been uncomfortable for some time with being relegated (along with the entire State Department) to promoting Jared Kushner’s business interests.

Putin's close personal relationship with Tillerson made it hard for him to leave.  But, when Rex released the following statement last night concerning Russia’s chemical attack, he broke from Putin in a way that finally allowed him his exit:

"There is never a justification for this type of attack -- the attempted murder of a private citizen on the soil of a sovereign nation -- and we are outraged that Russia appears to have again engaged in such behavior. From Ukraine to Syria -- and now the UK -- Russia continues to be an irresponsible force of instability in the world, acting with open disregard for the sovereignty of other states and the life of their citizens."

We suspect that Mike Pompeo will have a difficult time working for Jared and standing on his knees – as Trump does – in front of Putin.

Image: CNBC

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