Trump’s tariff war nudges Cohn toward White House exit

The Dow promptly tanked over 500 points, and Cohn’s allies began wondering if this would be the final insult sending the director of the National Economic Council to the exit.

One person close to Cohn, a former Goldman Sachs executive, said he wouldn’t be surprised if he eventually left the chaotic and deeply exhausting administration as a result of the decision. A second person close to Cohn described it as a brutal blow that violated one of the NEC director’s core beliefs—that protectionism is economically backward and won’t lead to increased prosperity.

“It’s just something he feels very passionate about and he is incredibly good at making the case,” this person said, adding that it still isn’t clear if Trump’s decision would be enough to drive out Cohn.