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So long
September 10, 2019

Nobody can seem to agree on how former National Security Adviser John Bolton found himself out of a job Tuesday — Bolton says he resigned on his own accord, President Trump says the ouster was, in fact, his decision. Whatever the truth may be, the early reactions to Bolton's exit from two prominent Republican senators are similarly disparate.

Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) called Bolton's departure a "huge loss" for the United States, arguing that it's necessary to have someone at the table who is willing to push back. "His view was not always the same as everybody else in the room," Romney said. "That's why you wanted him there. The fact that he was a contrarian from time to time is an asset not a liability."

When asked about a possible replacement for Bolton, Romney suggested none other than...John Bolton.

Romney's GOP colleague, Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), had the opposite reaction, commending the president "for his great instincts on foreign policy."

That's no surprise given that Bolton's preference for aggressive U.S. foreign policy clashes heavily with Paul's non-interventionist mindset. The senator, who has tried to influence U.S. negotiations with Iran, is apparently so thrilled with the news that he has reportedly scheduled a media call to applaud Bolton's resignation. Tim O'Donnell

February 19, 2019

Deputy Press Secretary Lindsay Walters is leaving the White House in an abnormally normal way.

Walters is stepping down after two years for a job with Edelman Public Relations, Bloomberg reports via a White House announcement on Tuesday. Her departure comes about a month after fellow Deputy Press Secretary Raj Shah resigned to take a lobbying job.

Besides Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders, Walters is the only spokesperson who's been on President Trump's staff for his entire presidency. She'll leave in April, saying in a statement it has "been an honor and a privilege to serve the president in this administration," per Bloomberg. Unlike some other recent departures, Sanders and acting Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney praised Walters in a goodbye statement. No replacement has been hired yet, Sanders said.

The news comes just hours after Vice President Mike Pence added a new member to his staff. Marc Short, who served as Trump's director of legislative affairs until last summer, will become Pence's chief of staff in March, Pence announced Tuesday. Short was also Pence's chief of staff back when the vice president was a member of Congress. Pence's ex-Chief of Staff Nick Ayers left the White House in December after publicly rejecting Trump's offer to become his chief of staff. Kathryn Krawczyk

February 13, 2019

FEMA Administrator Brock Long is on his way out.

Long announced his resignation in a statement on Wednesday, reports Bloomberg, saying that it's "time for me to go home to my family" and confirming that FEMA Deputy Administrator Pete Gaynor will take his place. Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen said in a statement that "over the last two years, Administrator Long has admirably led the men and women of FEMA during very difficult, historic and complex times."

This confirms a report from Bloomberg, which stated that Long would be leaving the agency but specified that that he was doing so voluntarily and not as a result of the scandals that have plagued his time as the head of FEMA. His use of government vehicles for his personal commutes sparked an inspector general probe in September. Long also faced criticism for FEMA's response to Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico, which he defended by saying the agency did a "phenomenal job." Brendan Morrow

January 7, 2019

World Bank Group president Jim Yong Kim is leaving his post long before his term expires.

On Monday, Kim told World Bank Group employees he'd made the "unexpected" choice to join the private sector. His resignation will take effect Feb. 1, with World Bank CEO Kristalina Georgieva taking over as interim president, per the Financial Times.

Kim has headed the international lender for developing countries since former President Barack Obama appointed him in 2012. He was reappointed by the bank's board for a second five-year term in 2017. Since President Trump's election, the lender has faced pressure "to justify its lending practices, including loans to China," Bloomberg says. It secured a $13 billion increase in lending capital last April after the U.S. dropped its opposition to the move.

Under Kim, the World Bank aimed to "end extreme poverty by 2030" and "boost shared prosperity," he wrote in his resignation letter. He'll now join a firm focused on "building infrastructure in developing countries." Trump will likely appoint Kim's successor, as the World Bank's leader is usually American, Bloomberg notes. Read Kim's resignation statement below. Kathryn Krawczyk

December 17, 2018

Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) is about to start his last two years in the Senate.

The 78-year-old senator announced Monday he would not run for re-election in 2020, seemingly hinting at his retirement. A longtime politician, Alexander served as Tennessee's governor from 1979 to 1987 and as the Secretary of Education before heading to the Senate in 2003.

Alexander thanked "the people of Tennessee" for "electing me to serve more combined years as governor and senator than anyone else from our state," he said in his Monday statement. "But now it is time for someone else to have that privilege," Alexander continued.

Fellow Tennessee Republican Sen. Bob Corker didn't run for re-election in 2018, and Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) won his seat. Corker quickly responded to Alexander's news with a statement of his own. Kathryn Krawczyk

August 14, 2017

Shonda Rhimes, creator of a string of hits including Grey's Anatomy, Scandal, and How to Get Away with Murder, has signed an exclusive deal with Netflix, the streaming video company announced Monday. Rhimes' move marked a major setback for Disney and ABC, which broadcast a string of Rhimes hits. The deal came shortly after Disney landed a blow against Netflix last week by announcing it would stop letting Netflix stream its new movies, and even make it yank some old Disney and Pixar movies, and launch its own streaming services. Harold Maass

February 11, 2015

Ethan Czahor, Jeb Bush's pick to run his proto-presidential political action committee, resigned Tuesday after his inflammatory social media musings came to light.

"While Ethan has apologized for regrettable and insensitive comments, they do not reflect the views of Governor Bush or his organization and it is appropriate for him to step aside," a spokesperson for Bush said.

The co-founder of Hipster.com, Czahor came under fire Monday when BuzzFeed discovered years-old tweets in which he labeled women "sluts" and made disparaging remarks about gay people at the gym. Then Tuesday, The Huffington Post unearthed racially insensitive comments Czahor made on a college radio show about Martin Luther King Jr. not sagging his pants and speaking in "slang." Jon Terbush

February 5, 2015

Benjamin Cole, now ex-communications director for Rep. Aaron Schock (R-Ill.), resigned on Thursday mere hours after his controversial social media musings surfaced.

Earlier in the day, ThinkProgress uncovered Facebook posts in which Cole likened minorities to animals. "So apparently the closing of the National Zoo has forced the animals to conduct their mating rituals on my street," Cole wrote in a post amid the 2013 government shutdown.

It's been a terrible news week for Schock. The congressman came under fire days earlier this week when The Washington Post reported he lavishly decorated his office in an homage to the British period drama Downton Abbey. Jon Terbush

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