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Gates on Trump’s treatment of Cabinet: ‘That's not the way I would deal with people’

Gates on Trump’s treatment of Cabinet: ‘That's not the way I would deal with people’

Former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates said in an interview broadcast Sunday that he would not deal with top aides in the same way President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden adds to vote margin over Trump after Milwaukee County recount Krebs says allegations of foreign interference in 2020 election 'farcical'  Republicans ready to become deficit hawks again under a President Biden MORE does. 

"That's not the way I would deal with people. That's not the way I think I ever did deal with people, and I did fire people — very senior people," Gates told CBS's Margaret Brennan on "Face the Nation" when asked about a report that Trump berated Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen NielsenKirstjen Michele NielsenBiden picks first Latino to lead Homeland Security Judge says acting DHS secretary appointment unlawful, invalidates DACA suspension Biden's hard stand on foreign election interference signals funding fight MORE. "But, you know, every president is going to have his own style — the way he deals with people. And, as I say, it's not the way I’d do it, but that's the way he does it."

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"Different presidents deal with the people that work with them in different ways," he continued. "The first president I worked for, Lyndon Johnson, did a lot of yelling and swearing at — at his senior officials. In his own way, so did — so did Richard Nixon."  

The New York Times reported that Nielsen was on the edge of stepping down from her post after the president criticized her during a Cabinet meeting. 

Nielsen reportedly drafted a resignation letter but never sent it. 

DHS has pushed back against the report, calling it false. 

 

Gates also addressed the high turnover of Cabinet officials in the administration, saying it is "probably unprecedented."

"For a president who had no experience in government, bringing with him a variety of people who had little or no experience in government, the churn has not been a surprise to me," gates added. 

Trump's Cabinet has experienced a slew of shake-ups during his administration. 

Former CIA Director Mike PompeoMichael (Mike) Richard PompeoBiden faces challenges, opportunities in Middle East O'Brien on 2024 talk: 'There's all kinds of speculation out there' Israeli military instructed to prepare for Trump strike on Iran: report MORE recently replaced former Secretary of State Rex TillersonRex Wayne TillersonBiden's State Department picks are a diplomatic slam dunk President Trump: To know him is to 'No' him Ocasio-Cortez, progressives call on Senate not to confirm lobbyists or executives to future administration posts MORE, and Veterans Affairs Secretary David ShulkinDavid Jonathon ShulkinVA inspector general says former top official steered M contract to friend Schumer demands answers in use of unproven coronavirus drug on veterans Former Trump VA secretary says staffer found plans to replace him in department copier MORE stepped down in March.