Trump calls Tillerson 'dumb as a rock,' 'lazy as hell'

Did Tillerson just take a veiled shot at Trump

Did Tillerson just take a veiled shot at Trump

After his time out of the public eye, Tillerson wasn't shy with his Trump insults.

President Trump on Friday attacked ex-Secretary of State Rex Tillerson - tweeting that the former top U.S. diplomat was "dumb as a rock" and "lazy as hell".

The president had touted Mr Tillerson as "one of the truly great business leaders of the world" when he selected him (after just one face-to-face meeting) as his first secretary of state in February 2017. He said Tillerson "didn't have the mental capacity needed for the job" while praising Tillerson's replacement, Mike Pompeo.

His candid remarks about his former boss came almost nine months after he was sacked by Trump in March and replaced with then-CIA Director Mike Pompeo. "I told him I'm ready to go up there and fight the fight, if that's what you want to do".

"Now it is a whole new ballgame, great spirit at State!" he said. President, I understand what you want to do, but you can't do it that way.

"If our leaders seek to hide the truth or we as people become accepting of alternative realities that are no longer grounded in facts, then we as American citizens are on a pathway to relinquishing our freedom", he said at the time.

Breaking with his former boss, Tillerson said that "there's no question" Russian Federation interfered with our elections in 2016, and that the Kremlin's goal is to "undermine our confidence and undermine the world's confidence in us".

The outburst came less than a day after Mr Tillerson shared some unflattering observations about his former boss with CBS host Bob Schieffer. It violates the law, it violates the treaty, you know.

"I'd say here's what we can do", Tillerson said.

In the same evening, Tillerson went on to dispute Trump's allegations against the Russian Federation inquiry.

While they often disagreed, Tillerson, who spent his whole career at "the disciplined, highly process-oriented" Exxon before retiring and becoming the top USA diplomat, said he did not know how else to conduct himself with Trump except in "a really straightforward fashion". On Friday afternoon, on his way back to Washington from an event in Missouri, Mr Trump used 270 characters to blast his former cabinet secretary.

He did not say what actions Trump wanted to take that would have run afoul of the law.

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