White House Aide Ousted by First Lady Says Service Was ‘an Honor’

Nile Post News

A White House aide pushed out by first lady Melania Trump said Thursday that it had been “an honor” to serve in President Donald Trump’s administration and that she admired the first family.

MiraRicardel, the deputy national security adviser, departed the White House on Wednesday, a day after the first lady’s office issued an extraordinary statement calling for her ouster.

“I admire the president and first lady and have great respect for my colleagues who are dedicated to supporting the president’s policies, and I look forward to working with them in the months ahead,”Ricardelsaid in a statement to The Associated Press.

Ricardelwas said to have clashed with the first lady’s staff over her trip to Africa last month. Aides saidRicardelhad pushed for a seat to be reserved on the first lady’s plane for a National Security Council representative to brief her during the trip.

A White House official, speaking on condition of anonymity, saidRicardelnever met the first lady. Theofficialdismissed reports thatRicardelwas trying to secure a seat for herself on the first lady’s trip.

On Tuesday, Stephanie Grisham, the first lady’s spokeswoman, released a statement saying: “It is the position of the office of the first lady that she [Ricardel] no longer deserves the honor of serving in this White House.”

Officials surprised

The East Wing statement caught senior White House officials by surprise, and White House aides were frustrated with howRicardel, a Trump loyalist and one of the highest-ranking women in the administration, was being treated. As the statement was issued,Ricardelwas standing, smiling, alongside President Donald Trump at an event in the Roosevelt Room.

An ally of national security adviser John Bolton,Ricardelbegan her service in the Trump administration as associate director in the White House Office of Presidential Personnel, then moved to the Commerce Department last year. Bolton brought her into the West Wing shortly after he took the job in April.

Bolton told staff in an email Thursday that he appreciatedRicardel’sservice. He is traveling in Asia this week alongside Vice President Mike Pence.

“I am deeply grateful for all Mira has done on behalf of the NSC, her deep knowledge of the national security issues we confront daily, and her unwavering commitment to the president,” Bolton told staff.

Trump’s White House has set records for administration turnover.Ricardelwas the third person to hold the post under Trump.

Press secretary Sarah Sanders said Wednesday thatRicardelwould “transition to a new role within the administration.” It was not yet clear what her new position would be.