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Donald Trump calls Rex Tillerson 'dumb as a rock' after critical interview

08 December 2018

"And I think he grew exhausted of me being the guy every day that told him 'You can't do that, and let's talk about what we can do'".

Former US secretary of state Rex Tillerson said Donald Trump was "undisciplined" and repeatedly wanted to break the law - leading the US president to respond Friday that his onetime cabinet member was "dumb as a rock". "I think he grew exhausted of me being the guy who told him, 'You can't do that'".

Amid reports the Tillerson would be gone soon, Trump tweeted last December: "The media has been speculating that I fired Rex Tillerson or that he would be leaving soon - FAKE NEWS!" At several points in his tenure, reports of his criticisms of the president frequently reached the press, including one instance where he called Trump a "f-ing moron".

"Mike Pompeo is doing a great job, I am very proud of him", the president tweeted. He said Tillerson "didn't have the mental capacity needed for the job" while praising Tillerson's replacement, Mike Pompeo. He was lazy as hell.

That's not really a Tillerson insult, except that getting fired via Twitter was seen by many as pretty insulting.

Tillerson, 66, was sacked from the White House in March after rumors of a rift between him and Trump had been circulating for some time.

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Trump announced Tillerson's firing by tweet and, in a final indignity, the White House made it known that the nation's top diplomat was on the toilet when he learned the news.

Tensions ratcheted up after NBC News reported that Tillerson had publicly referred to Trump as a "moron".

Tillerson, who was sacked in March, made no attempt to deny his poor relationship with Trump during a rare interview Thursday night as part of a charity dinner in his native Texas.

Asked how his relationship with Trump had gone off the rails, Tillerson said it might have been the result of his telling the president that he could not do certain things because they were illegal or would violate USA treaties.

"So often, the President would say, 'Here's what I want you to do, and here's how I want you to do it, '" Mr Tillerson said at a fundraiser for the MD Anderson Cancer Centre in Houston.

However, Tillerson led a demoralized State Department that saw its role vastly diminished, with several high-profile posts unoccupied and many allies questioning the efficacy of dealing with a diplomat they suspected never had Trump's ear. "It troubles me that the American people seem to want to know so little about issues, that they are satisfied with a 128 characters". "I think he's trying to act on his instincts". Thank you to Rex Tillerson for his service!

Donald Trump calls Rex Tillerson 'dumb as a rock' after critical interview