DeMint resigns as Heritage president

The Heritage Foundation on Tuesday announced president Jim Demint's resignation, blaming him for "significant and worsening management issues that led to a breakdown of internal communications and cooperation."

"Jim DeMint and a handful of his closest advisers failed to resolve these problems," a statement from the conservative group said.

The foundation's board of trustees asked for and received the former senator's resignation after a unanimous vote, the statement said.

DeMint took over the conservative think tank in 2013 after serving as a South Carolina senator since 2005.

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Heritage announced that founder Ed Feulner has been elected president and CEO while the foundation chooses DeMint's replacement.

The Daily Beast reported Tuesday evening that four top Heritage staffers loyal to DeMint -- Executive Vice President Bret Bernhardt, Vice President of Communications Wesley Denton, Vice President of Policy Promotion Ed Corrigan and DeMint’s chief of staff, Camera Seward -- have resigned.

In a Tuesday evening statement, DeMint said, "I’m grateful to have worked with some of the greatest minds and talents in America and believe we’ve accomplished together what we set out to do."

“The public statement released earlier is puzzling given that the board of trustees has praised our work for four years and approved performance bonuses for the entire management team each year for a job well done," he added. 

DeMint went on to tout Heritage's "most successful impact on a presidential transition team since the days of Ronald Reagan, culminating in the confirmation of Judge Gorsuch and one of the best presidential cabinets in recent history."

Heritage board chairman Thomas A. Saunders III blasted the media for speculating about the group's future.

"I wanted to ensure that the Board’s decision was final before alerting you," Saunders wrote in the release.

"Unfortunately, the media ran with speculation about this story before the facts could be disclosed."

Updated 8:37 p.m