WASHINGTON (CBSNewYork/AP) — Rex Tillerson says he has never considered leaving the post of secretary of state.
Tillerson said Wednesday that reports suggesting otherwise are “erroneous.”
He was giving a statement after NBC News reported the former Exxon Mobil CEO had been on the verge of resigning this summer amid mounting policy disputes with the White House.
NBC said the tensions came to a head around the time President Donald Trump gave a politicized speech in July to the Boy Scouts of America, an organization Tillerson once led.
NBC also said Tillerson referred to Trump as a “moron”‘ after a July 20 meeting at the Pentagon with members of Trump’s national security team and Cabinet officials.
NBC cited three anonymous officials familiar with the incident.
Trump tweeted and said the NBC story was refuted by Tillerson and was “fake news.”
At a State Department news conference Wednesday, Tillerson did not deny that he had called his boss that name.
Asked about the report, Tillerson replied, “We don’t deal with that kind of petty nonsense and “I’m just not going to be part of this effort to divide this administration.”
(© Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)