With former White House communications director Anthony Scaramucci sacked this morning after just 10 days in the job, Twitter is ablaze with savage memes. It’s like The Apprentice never ended. It’s like WWE’s Royal Rumble has just begun. The only way up (or down) from here is for Trump to fire someone in 60 seconds, giving us the ultimate Nicolas Cage-themed meme the internet wants and deserves. So how many people has Trump fired now? Who has decided to just fall on their sword? How long did they all last for? And what did those poor souls do to deserve such a fate?
The body count so far:
Sally Yates (10 days)
The former acting attorney-general was sacked by Trump in late January, just over a week into his presidency. Yates was fired after she directed her attorneys not to defend Trump’s executive refugee and immigration ban. A statement from the White House read:
“The Acting Attorney-General, Sally Yates has betrayed the Department of Justice by refusing to enforce a legal order to protect citizens of the United States.”
“Ms Yates is an Obama Administration appointee who is weak on borders and very weak on illegal immigration. It is time to get serious about protecting our country.”
Michael Flynn (24 days)
Flynn got the sack after it was revealed he’d lied to Vice President Mike Pence regarding the extent of his communications with Russian officials, however it took a staggering 18 days for Trump to ask for his resignation.
Preet Bharara (49 days)
Trump wanted to clear the deck of all attorneys left over from the Obama administration and asked them all (over 40 people) to resign so he could install new appointees. When Bharara refused to submit a letter of resignation … you guessed it. Mark Corralo, a spokesman for one of Trump’s attorneys, said at the time that Bharara was a “resistance Democrat” with a political “axe to grind”.
James Comey (108 days)
If Trump is the Big Show of the White House, then this one was his showstopper. At the time of his sacking, Comey was director of the FBI and was heading an investigation into whether Trump’s advisers colluded with the Russian government to manipulate the outcome of the 2016 presidential election. In his letter to Comey, Trump said:
“While I greatly appreciate you informing me, on three separate occasions, that I am not under investigation, I nevertheless concur with the judgment of the Department of Justice that you are not able to effectively lead the bureau.
“It is essential that we find new leadership for the FBI that restores public trust and confidence in its vital law enforcement mission.”
Adding to the sense of absurdist theatre, Comey discovered he had been fired by seeing a TV news update in the background while delivering a speech to FBI employees.
Sean Spicer (182 days)
Spicer resigned after Trump appointed Anthony Scaramucci as his new communications director. So, while Spicer wasn’t fired per se, he has been included in this list because he was a quintessential part of the first season of the Trump drama. Spicer was custom-built for the internet. He is the most memorable and meme-able press secretary of all time; his best of collection makes for great watching. He was also great for Melissa McCarthy. Trump himself paid tribute to Spicer’s comedic value, through his new press secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders: “I wish him continued success as he moves on to pursue new opportunities. Just look at his great television ratings.”
Reince Preibus (189 days)
Preibus, the White House chief of staff, was ousted by Trump and replaced with Homeland Security secretary John Kelly late last week. As The New York Times reported, Trump announced the switch via Twitter while sitting aboard Air Force One. Before his time came to an end, Anthony Scaramucci famously called him a “paranoid schizophrenic”.
Anthony Scaramucci (10 days)
The latest to go, just out this morning. The official word was that the Mooch was sacked in order to give new White House chief of staff John Kelly a clean slate to work with. However, Scaramucci was an absolute loose cannon, and his sacking was probably the shrewdest decision Trump has made. In case you missed it, he really had a way with words:
“I’m not Steve Bannon, I’m not trying to suck my own cock. I’m not trying to build my own brand off the fucking strength of the president. I’m here to serve the country,” the Mooch told The New Yorker’s Ryan Lizza.
Ultimately, Scaramucci didn’t last two weeks, and as someone on Twitter pointed out, if you bought a carton of milk the day he was hired, you can probably still drink it. For your viewing pleasure, the New York Times put together a highlights reel of his 10 days in office.