I don’t see Reince as cause for concern, but Scaramucci versus Bannon? Yeah, chairs will be thrown at a minimum. A knife fight isn’t out of the question.
To add insult to injury for Team Trump, the outlet reporting this is … Fox News.
But the comments have spooked some of his co-workers. Speaking to Fox News, one White House official expressed concern.
“This is getting out of hand. I am honestly getting concerned for my safety in the office tomorrow. This type of behavior is unbelievable. Working in the White House and something like that is said, it is a disgrace,” the official said.
Politico’s also sensing unusual fear in the corridors of power:
— Tim Alberta (@TimAlberta) July 27, 2017
Ryan Lizza, the reporter who conducted the New Yorker interview with Mooch, recorded the whole thing, which explains why the White House isn’t screaming “FAKE NEWS!” tonight. Scaramucci promised to refrain from “colorful language” in the future but I think the problem is less the profanity than the fact that the White House communications director is calling the White House chief of staff a “paranoid schizophrenic, a paranoiac” in on-the-record interviews. One nonviolent possibility that occurs to me is Priebus and Bannon confronting Trump jointly and issuing a “he goes or we go” ultimatum vis-a-vis Mooch, but it sounds like that’s basically what happened last week when Scaramucci was hired and it didn’t work out well for them. As embarrassing and inappropriate as Scaramucci’s tirade was, Trump’s not going to admit error by canning him a week after bringing him on.
Besides, the president being who he is, he probably thought the interview was just super.
On the other hand:
One Priebus detracted/Trump supporter calls and says, "Anthony just bought Reince four more months."
— Maggie Haberman (@maggieNYT) July 27, 2017
Right. Trump might be content to have Scaramucci tormenting Priebus for his amusement in his twisted “Team of Mortal Enemies” version of “Team of Rivals,” but he’d take endless heat if he pushed Priebus out now and effectively rewarded Scaramucci for the interview by eliminating his nemesis. Trump’s not big on firing people anyway, as Jeff Sessions could tell you. He prefers to knife deputies who’ve fallen into disfavor day after day until they decide they can take no more and quit.
Reince is obviously on his way out sooner or later, though, as continued employment alongside Scaramucci is unthinkable, so what does he have to lose by leaking dirt on him to humiliate him? We’re headed for a vicious mud fight in the media between the two of them. At least we finally have a solution, though, to the mystery last week of why Sean Spicer was so eager to get out of the White House once he knew Scaramucci was coming in. Spicer and Priebus must have known from painful experience after their time at the RNC that Mooch is a loose cannon bordering on completely unhinged. And now the public knows too. It’s hard to believe anyone likes it on either the populist or establishment side of the party’s divide. Except the president, of course.
The GOP nominated a circus and it got one. Send in the clowns.
Update: Breitbart is unhappy with Scaramucci after his attack on Bannon and knows which button of Trump’s to push to make Trump unhappy with him too: “Move over President Donald Trump. You are yesterday’s news. It seems like this is now The Anthony Scaramucci Show. And Trump better get used to it.”
It’s amazing that Mooch went after both the establishment guy and the populist guy in Trump’s inner circle. If he had chosen one or the other and concentrated his fire, he would have gotten some “enemy of my enemy is my friend” support from one wing of the party. Instead he went after both. That’s either proof that he’s unhinged or proof that he’s alien enough to the right in his own politics that he doesn’t know where the fault lines within the GOP lie.
Update: One last point. If reports are to be believed, there are a lot of unhappy campers in Trump’s cabinet right now: Sessions is upset for obvious reasons, Mattis is upset at how Trump handled the transgender ban, McMaster is upset at being frozen out on some big decisions, and Tillerson is upset at his Department being decimated and at Sessions’s humiliation. This could be the last straw for any of them. It’s one thing to work in an “unorthodox” environment for the good of the country but who wants to be part of a freak show when you’re that accomplished and respected?