Ousted White House communications boss Anthony Scaramucci claims there are figures in Washington actively working against President Donald Trump.
In his first television appearance since being fired last month, Mr Scaramucci told US broadcaster ABC that there were “elements” within the White House trying to eject Mr Trump, and he had “named some names”.
The former hedge fund financier was removed from his position as head of President Trump’s communications team after just 10 days.
His firing came after an expletive-laden interview with the New Yorker in which he strongly attacked then-White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus.
He also directed profanity-laced insults at Chief Strategist Steve Bannon.
Mr Scaramucci has said he had thought the interview was off the record, and he had “paid the consequences for that conversation”.
“What happens in Washington… is the President is not a representative of the political establishment class, so for whatever reason the people have made a decision that they want to eject him,” he told ABC.
— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) August 13, 2017
“I think there are elements inside of Washington, also inclusive in the White House, that are not necessarily abetting the president’s interests or his agenda.”
The White House has been plagued by damaging leaks since Donald Trump took office in January, including the release of the full transcript of his notorious first phone conversation with Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.
He said President Trump needed to bring in “more loyalists” in order to carry out his agenda.
Mr Scaramucci criticised the influence of Mr Bannon and his right-wing Breitbart News website, suggesting the President needed to move more toward the mainstream and moderates in order to push through “a very successful legislative agenda”.
When asked if Mr Trump should have spoken out against white supremacists after a rally in Charlottesville turned violent on Saturday, Mr Scaramucci was critical of the President’s response.
“I wouldn’t have recommended that statement,” Mr Scaramucci said of President Trump’s decision to criticise violence “on many sides” but not clearly condemn white supremacists.
“I think he would have needed to have been much harsher. With the moral authority of the presidency, you have to call that stuff out.”
– With agencies