28 Jul 2017

White House steps up efforts to stop media leaks

10:57 am on 28 July 2017

The newly-hired communications director for US President Donald Trump says he has a very good idea who the "senior leakers" are at the White House.

Anthony Scaramucci.

The new White House Communications Director, Anthony Scaramucci. Photo: AFP

In a quickly-deleted tweet, and in interviews on Thursday, Anthony Scaramucci appeared to point the finger at Chief of Staff Reince Priebus.

"If Reince wants to explain that he's not a leaker, let him do that," he told CNN in a phone interview.

"He's gonna need to speak for his own actions," he added.

Mr Trump has said leaks from the White House are a national security threat and must stop.

The tensions between two of his top aides appeared to be made public when Mr Scaramucci tweeted on Wednesday night that his government financial disclosure form had been leaked.

The tweet, which he subsequently deleted, ended by tagging Mr Priebus' Twitter handle.

After journalists began reporting that the tweet was a threat, Mr Scaramucci posted: "Wrong!"

"Tweet was public notice to leakers that all Sr Adm officials are helping to end illegal leaks."

Mr Preibus - who formerly chaired the Republican National Committee - and former White House spokesman Sean Spicer had reportedly opposed the hiring of Mr Scaramucci.

Mr Spicer announced his resignation on the same day Mr Scaramucci was hired.

"I don't know if [my relationship with Mr Preibus] is repairable or not," said Mr Scaramucci on Thursday. "That will be up to the president."

On his first day in the job last week, he told reporters he and the chief of staff were personal friends who liked to "rough each other up" once in a while. "But he's a dear friend," he added.

Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan, who is the highest-ranking Republican member of Congress, told reporters: "If those two men have differences, my advice would be to sit down and settle those differences."


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