President Donald Trump’s new communications director promised he would crack down on the illegal leaks coming from inside the White House.
Tuesday morning, he started cleaning house.
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Insiders claim Anthony Scaramucci identified his first suspected leaker Tuesday — former White House assistant press secretary Michael Short — and dismissed him.
“Short’s ouster is Scaramucci’s first warning shot to White House aides who have been perceived as disloyal to the president. In an echo of Trump’s not-so-subtle warning to Jeff Sessions about his status as attorney general, Scaramucci’s vow to ‘fire everybody’ is a warning to staffers perceived as leakers,” Politico reported.
In other words, this could be just the start of the shake-up heading towards Washington, D.C.
Speaking to reporters, Scaramucci said that he was “not doing an investigation. I’m just going to get the leaking to stop.” He stressed that he had “the authority from the president to do that.”
“You’re either going to stop leaking, or you’re going to get fired,” Scaramucci warned.
The Trump administration has been troubled by numerous damaging leaks to the liberal media. The president has criticized the leaks and urged authorities to prosecute the illegal acts.
Scaramucci said Tuesday he did not know Short, but “the person who wanted me to fire him outranks me” and promised that the rest of the communications staff had “amnesty” as long as they “stop leaking.”
According to Politico, “Short was scorned by many of his colleagues for quitting the Trump campaign, only to rejoin as a White House staffer because of Priebus. In a story often retold by campaign staffers, they arrived at Trump Tower one morning, months before the election, to see Short’s computer left open on his otherwise empty desk.
“The next time he was seen by former campaign staffers was in January, on their first day in the White House, where some were stunned to learn that they were going to have to work alongside him or for some of the press assistants subordinate to him,” Politico reported.
Short has vigorously denied being a leaker, telling Breitbart News: “I have never leaked.”
Trump appointed Scaramucci to the job Friday. The Wall Street hedge fund manager is a polished television commentator, and has announced plans to bring in private sector communications professionals to polish-up the White House’s image.
Press Secretary Sean Spicer resigned last week and his deputy, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, has been named to replace him.
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The Associated Press contributed to this article.