Trump unsure if Mattis will stay: 'He's sort of a Democrat'

President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump rips Dems' demands, impeachment talk: 'Witch Hunt continues!' Nevada Senate passes bill that would give Electoral College votes to winner of national popular vote The Hill's Morning Report - Pelosi remains firm despite new impeachment push MORE said in an interview broadcast Sunday that it's possible Defense Secretary James MattisJames Norman MattisPentagon reporters left in dark as Iran tensions escalate Trump officials slow-walk president's order to cut off Central American aid: report Overnight Defense — Presented by Huntington Ingalls Industries — Trump nominates Shanahan as Pentagon chief | House panel advances bill to block military funds for border wall | Trump defends Bolton despite differences MORE will leave his administration.

Trump told Lesley Stahl of "60 Minutes" that Mattis hasn't told him that he intends to leave his post, but demurred when asked if he'd like to see the general depart the Cabinet.

"I have a very good relationship with him," Trump said. "I had lunch with him two days ago. I have a very good relationship with him. It could be that he is."

ADVERTISEMENT

"I think he's sort of a Democrat, if you want to know the truth," the president continued. "But Gen. Mattis is a good guy. We get along very well. He may leave. I mean, at some point, everybody leaves. Everybody. People leave. That's Washington."

Mattis's departure has been the subject of speculation for weeks, with multiple news outlets reporting that Trump has been weighing potential replacements.

The president later denied those reports, citing Mattis's response to Bob Woodward's book, "Fear: Trump in the White House," which reported exchanges in which the Defense secretary criticizes the president to other staffers and questions Trump's understanding of key issues.

Mattis, 68, issued a statement denying he said anything attributed to him in the book, calling the work "fiction." He later told reporters not to take rumors of his exit seriously.

The president told "60 Minutes" that there are some Cabinet members he's "not happy with" and acknowledged there are likely to be more departures. 

In addition to Mattis, numerous reports in recent months have focused on the uncertain future of Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsHouse Democrats leave empty chair for McGahn at hearing MSNBC host: Barr 'the most dangerous person' who works for Trump Chris Wallace: AG Barr 'clearly is protecting' Trump MORE. Trump has openly criticized his attorney general on several occasions, but said that the former Alabama senator would be safe at least until the midterms.

U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki HaleyNimrata (Nikki) HaleyWill Trump ignore the Constitution and stay in White House beyond his term? Trump taps ex-State spokeswoman Heather Nauert to help oversee White House fellowships Conservatives slam Omar over tweet on Gaza violence MORE announced last week that she would leave her post at the end of the year.