White House Communications Director Anthony Scaramucci on Thursday said Chief of Staff Reince Priebus can defend himself from accusations that he’s a leaker.
“When I put out a tweet and I put Reince’s name in a tweet, they’ll all make the assumption that it’s him because journalists know who the leakers are,” he told CNN’s “New Day” referring to a now-deleted tweet. “So if Reince wants to explain he’s not a leaker, let him do that. But let me tell you about myself. I’m a straight shooter and I’ll go right to the heart of the matter.”
After appearing to blame Priebus in a tweet late Wednesday for illegally divulging financial information about him and threatening to sic the FBI on him, Scaramucci deleted it early Thursday morning.
“In light of the leak of my financial disclosure info which is a felony. I will be contacting @FBI and the @TheJusticeDept #swamp @Reince45,” Scaramucci wrote on Twitter.
It was taken down a few hours later.
Scaramucci then wrote another tweet explaining that his intent was to show that the White House was united in its efforts to ferret out leakers.
”Wrong! Tweet was public notice to leakers that all Sr Adm officials are helping to end illegal leaks. @Reince45,” he wrote after midnight.
Although Scaramucci said it is a felony to disclose his financial disclosure form, it actually became available to the public 30 days after he filed it with the Office of Government Ethics. The form revealed Scaramucci is worth as much as $85 million and has a minority interest in the NY Mets worth up to $5 million.
In the CNN interview, Scaramucci went Biblical, comparing his relationship with Priebus to that of Cain and Abel’s.
“Now, if you want to talk about the chief of staff, we have had odds, we have had differences,” said Scaramucci. “When I said we were brothers from the podium, that’s because we’re rough on each other. Some brothers are like Cain and Abel. Other brothers can fight with each other and get along. I don’t know if this is repairable or not. That will be up to the president.”
Reports said Priebus and White House chief strategist Steve Bannon were fiercely opposed to Trump’s naming Scaramucci the head of the communications shop, saying that the former hedge fund executive had no experience running such an operation.
After the announcement last Friday, White House press secretary Sean Spicer, who once worked for Priebus at the Republican National Committee, resigned.
He was replaced by Sarah Huckabee Sanders.
Still, Scaramucci admitted that administration officials “leak things to reporters to help shape policy”
But he also said he will not stop until he uncovers those “nefarious, unnecessary, backstabbing, palace intrigue-like leaks.”