Rex Tillerson has been relatively tight-lipped about his time in the Trump White House. But, some nine months after Trump fired him (an “unceremonious firing by tweet,” Politico recalls), the former secretary of state has finally spoken publicly about his interactions with the president in a “rare interview” with Bob Schieffer of CBS, the Washington Post reports, adding that in the interview “he didn’t call Trump a ‘moron,’ but he didn’t exactly suggest that Trump was a scholar.” Tillerson did reportedly say that the president is “pretty undisciplined,” which was a challenge for Tillerson “coming from the disciplined, highly process-oriented ExxonMobil corporation.” Here’s more from Tillerson’s interview with Schieffer:
- On Trump clashing with Tillerson: “Obviously we are starkly different in our styles. We did not have a common value system. When the president would say, 'Here's what I want to do and here's how I want to do it,' I'd have to say to him, 'Mr. President, I understand what you want to do, but you can't do it that way. It violates the law. It violates a treaty.' You know, he got really frustrated."
- On Trump’s leadership style: “He acts on his instincts; in some respects, that looks like impulsiveness. But it’s not his intent to act on impulse. I think he really is trying to act on his instincts.”
- On Trump’s decision-making: “[Trump] doesn’t like to read, doesn’t read briefing reports, doesn’t like to get into the details of a lot of things, but rather just kind of says, ‘This is what I believe.’”
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