Trump impeachment hearings
It looks like Mick Mulvaney is right: President Trump just can't quit him, even as he longer wants or needs him.
Trump has been threatening to fire Mulvaney, the acting White House chief of staff and nominal director of the Office of Management and Budget, for weeks, The Washington Post reports. Trump is particularly angry that Mulvaney acknowledged in an Oct. 17 press conference that Trump withheld aid to Ukraine to pressure Ukraine's government to investigate his Democratic opponents. But "senior advisers have cautioned Trump that removing Mulvaney at such a sensitive time could be perilous," the Post reports, "both because Mulvaney played an integral role in the decision to freeze the aid, and because of the disruption that would be caused by replacing one of Trump's most senior aides."
"I don't think you'll see him going anywhere until after December," one Trump adviser told the Post. "But the president was very unhappy with that press conference. That was a very bad day for the president." Another senior U.S. official said Trump is "back asking everyone what they think about Mulvaney." White House officials are also irritated by Mulvaney's abandoned legal bid to request court guidance on participating in the House impeachment inquiry.
At the same time, Politico reports, "Mulvaney is isolated, marginalized, and growing more irrelevant to the West Wing staff he's meant to lead during one of the most consequential moments of the Trump presidency." He is reportedly participating in joint White House-congressional GOP meetings to come up with a unified response to the public impeachment hearings, but from the sidelines.
"Mulvaney is kind of a lone wolf," one former senior administration official tells Politico. "This just reinforces what some of us already know: Some people play the inside game. Some people play the outside game. He is playing both poorly right now. Once impeachment is over, my guess is that he is not long for this world" — meaning, reportedly, the White House.