Axelrod: White House changes would be ‘wise’

Personnel changes at the White House would be “wise” to ensure President Obama’s final two years in office are successful, former adviser David Axelrod said Tuesday.

Axelrod, who served at the White House during Obama’s first term, said many on Obama’s team have been with him since the beginning, and said it would be natural to make some changes.

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“Washington always wants you to throw out bodies after a bad election, so you'll hear that hew and cry," Axelrod told MSNBC Election Day interview.

“But it's also been a turbulent couple of years — a lot of his team has been there since the beginning. It's a natural time to evaluate whether you've got all the pieces in place that you need, and he should do that.”

Asked if that evaluation should include a staff shake-up, Axelrod responded: “Oh, I think so. I mean, I think he will.

“People will leave on their own because six years is a long time, but he also has to say, what went wrong, what went right, what do I need to do to make these next two years successful,” Axelrod said.

“I think that would be a wise thing to do,” he added.

Democrats are worried that Tuesday’s midterm elections could end with their party losing its majority. If that happens, Obama is likely to get much of the blame.

Past White Houses have reacted to bad midterm elections with high-profile firings, but White House press secretary Josh Earnest on Monday suggested Obama has no plans to make big changes to his staff.

“I think what will be different is that there have been some presidents who have felt compelled in the aftermath of the midterm elections to publicly fire high-profile members of the administration,” Earnest said. “At this point I don’t anticipate that that will happen later this week."

Earnest has said it is possible that over the next few months, it would be natural for some officials to transition out of the White House.

There has been speculation that deputy national security adviser Ben Rhodes, senior presidential adviser Dan Pfeiffer or communications director Jennifer Palmieri could leave.

This story was updated at 4:19 p.m.