WASHINGTON (CBSNewYork/AP) — The White House is discussing a plan to replace Secretary of State Rex Tillerson with CIA director Mike Pompeo, according to two administration officials.
The two officials were not authorized to publicly discuss internal thinking and spoke with the Associated Press on condition of anonymity.
When asked about Tillerson’s future, President Donald Trump told reporters Thursday, “He’s here, Rex is here.”
White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders said there are “no personnel announcements at this time,” adding Tillerson continues to lead the department, and that the entire Cabinet is focused on completing Trump’s first year in office.
U.S. officials and individuals familiar with White House plans have spoken about the possibility of a broad shakeup in Trump’s national security team. But the timing of such a change is unclear.
The move could happened within the next several weeks, the New York Times reported. The plan would reportedly involve nominating Arkansas Sen. Tom Cotton to replace Pompeo as CIA director.
Cotton’s office said in a statement that his “focus is on serving Arkansans in the Senate.”
Also unclear is whether Pompeo has been approached about the Cabinet reshuffle, but another administration official said he is open to taking the job.
A senior administration official who spoke recently with Tillerson says the former Exxon Mobil CEO felt secure in his position and was focused on his State Department reorganization and other diplomacy matters.
(© Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)