The newly-appointed White House communications director has threatened to fire the entire department in a rant during a phone call to a reporter.

Less than a week after his appointment, Anthony Scaramucci also launched an attack on two other senior members of the administration – chief of staff Reince Priebus and chief strategist Stephen Bannon.

The comments were made when Mr Scaramucci phoned The New Yorker’s Washington correspondent Ryan Lizza on Wednesday night.

Mr Lizza said at no point did Mr Scaramucci request that the conversation be off the record – but he has now tweeted lamenting his “mistake” in “trusting a reporter”.

The phone call to Mr Lizza had initially been to demand where he got information regarding a meal that President Donald Trump had held with his wife, conservative commentator Sean Hannity, and former Fox News executive Bill Shine.

“Who leaked that to you?” he asked. I said I couldn’t give him that information. He responded by threatening to fire the entire White House communications staff.

“What I’m going to do is, I will eliminate everyone in the comms team and we’ll start over,” he said.

I laughed, not sure if he really believed that such a threat would convince a journalist to reveal a source. He continued to press me and complain about the staff he’s inherited in his new job.




Mr Scaramucci has been engaged in a long-running feud with Mr Priebus, who reportedly blocked him from being appointed to President Trump’s senior team immediately following the election – despite him having sold off his company, SkyBridge Capital, in anticipation of such a role.

Following his eventual appointment last week, press secretary Sean Spicer – a Priebus ally – resigned in protest.

And while Mr Scaramucci and Mr Priebus have insisted publicly that they are united in support of the president, during the conversation with The New Yorker he intimated that his rival would be asked to leave.


“I’ll get to the person who leaked that to you. Reince Priebus – if you want to leak something – he’ll be asked to resign very shortly.”

The issue, he said, was that he believed Priebus had been worried about the dinner because he hadn’t been invited.

“Reince is a f***ing paranoid schizophrenic, a paranoiac,” Scaramucci said.

He channelled Priebus as he spoke: “ ‘Oh, Bill Shine is coming in. Let me leak the f***ing thing and see if I can c***-block these people the way I c***-blocked Scaramucci for six months.’


He also insisted that a Politico report revolving around his financial disclosure was illegal – unaware that the reporter in question had obtained the publicly-available document from the Export-Import Bank.

He then went on to attack Mr Bannon for apparently courting media attention.

“I’m not Steve Bannon, I’m not trying to suck my own c***,” he said, speaking of Trump’s chief strategist.

“I’m not trying to build my own brand off the f****** strength of the President. I’m here to serve the country.”


At the time of publishing, neither Mr Priebus nor Mr Bannon had commented.

Mr Scaramucci posted a tweet after The New Yorker article was published, saying he sometimes used “colourful language” but that he would “not give up the passionate fight for @RealDonaldTrump’s agenda.”

Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the new White House press secretary, said Mr Scaramucci had simply been “expressing strong feelings”.

His tweet, she said, made it clear that he was “a passionate guy” who “sometimes lets that passion get the better of him.”

She added: “I don’t think he’ll do it again.”




Something for the married

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