Published: Wed, March 07, 2018
Markets | By Noel Gibbs

Gary Cohn, Trump's Top Economic Adviser, Resigns From White House

Gary Cohn, Trump's Top Economic Adviser, Resigns From White House

Trump also placed some of the blame on the counterprotesters while refusing to categorically condemn white-nationalist protesters, one of whom authorities say killed a woman when he drove a auto into a crowd of counterprotesters.

Senior White House adviser Jared Kushner and staff from the State Department and National Security Council will be meeting Wednesday with Mexico's president and foreign minister in Mexico City.

Trump last week gathered steel and aluminum executives at the White House to announce he would levy a 25 percent tariff on steel imports and a 10 percent tariff on aluminum imports.

Trump again hit out at the threats of countermeasures, saying if the European Union reacts, "then we put a big tax of 25 percent on their cars and believe me, they won't be doing it very long".

Cohn's resignation comes within days of Hope Hicks quitting as communications director, the fourth in almost 14 months of Trump's presidency.

Trump's first year in office has been a frenzy of departures and infighting, which insiders put down to clashing interests, inexperience and the president's unique management style.

Trump asked him to stay to help with his trip to an worldwide economic forum in Davos, Switzerland, and the State of the Union Address.

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It's at least the second major loss of face for Cohn, who also very publicly failed to convince Trump not to withdraw from the Paris climate accords. Now was the time to pull the trigger, especially given his frustration over the trade fight.

Trump adviser and economist Larry Kudlow has always been seen as a potential candidate to join the administration. Breitbart News, once headed by Bannon, regularly included an illustration of a globe next to Cohn's name to mock him as a globalist. The pair spent a good bit of time together during the day.

The president was asked about his tweet during the joint press conference.

"We are urging caution", McConnell said. The only name now in wide circulation is Larry Kudlow, the economic commentator and former Reagan administration official.

"Gary has served his country with great distinction, dedicating his skill and leadership to grow the US economy and pass historic tax reform".

Republicans have suggested they may try to undercut the tariffs if Trump goes ahead with them.

Camden Fine, president of the Independent Community Bankers of America, agreed Cohn's departure "could have an impact on financial regulatory agency appointments". "S&P 500 futures slid more than 1%".

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"Clearly he's a free-trader and Wall Street likes free-traders".

Jaret Seiberg, an analyst with Cowen Washington Research Group, called Cohn "the most important and powerful pragmatic, pro-business member of the President's inner circle".

It was expected in the White House and on Capitol Hill that Mr Cohn would be more likely to leave the administration once the tax bill was signed into law. He grew up in OH and bounced around different schools while battling dyslexia.

Multiple aides who are considering departing said they didn't have a clue who could fill their roles - adding that their desire to remain team players has kept them on the job longer than they had planned.

There is no succession plan in place at the NEC, people familiar with the matter said. The resignation comes after President Trump's insistence on proposed steel and aluminum tariffs.

His resignation could dash hopes that Trump might be steered away from protectionist policies - and raises the chances of a full-blown trade war with retaliatory action from Europe, Canada and China.

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