A top aide to outgoing Secretary of State Tillerson was fired Tuesday after contradicting the White House account of his boss’ dismissal.
Steve Goldstein, the State Department’s undersecretary for public diplomacy and public affairs, was let go hours after Tillerson was unceremoniously told his tenure was over via a tweet from President Trump, sources told the Daily News.
Goldstein had released a statement in his name saying that Tillerson was “unaware of the reason” for his termination.
The statement also told reporters that Tillerson learned of his firing Tuesday morning from Trump’s tweet announcing he was nominating CIA chief Mike Pompeo to lead the State Department.
Goldstein joined the struggling State Department late last year and was seen as loyal to Tillerson.
He was not well liked by those in the White House, according to several reports.
Top officials who have been fired or quit under Trump administration
The Nashville, Tenn., native worked as a press secretary and chief of staff to several members of Congress and worked within the communications department at the Interior Department during the George H.W. Bush administration.
“Serving as the Under Secretary of State has been the honor of a lifetime,” Goldstein said in a statement. “I am grateful to the President and to Secretary Tillerson for having had this opportunity.
“Being able to serve the American people is an undertaking I have greatly enjoyed. I look forward to catching up on my rest, to winning an indoor rowing championship, and the next challenge that life brings,” he added.