US Vice President Pence says NAFTA deal possible in several weeks

Apr 17, 2018, 18:11
US Vice President Pence says NAFTA deal possible in several weeks

The episode is an illustration of the fact that while President Trump may be incoherent on matters of policy and, at times, basic speech, he still retains the memory of a vengeful elephant.

While Lerner will not become Pence's national security adviser, he will continue to serve as an adviser to Pence's national security team, according to the source, who described this decision as "the smartest and best path forward without inviting any unnecessary distraction".

There had been hopes leading up to this weekend's summit that an agreement might be signed, but that did not happen and instead, USA negotiators softened their demands on autos even as Trump said he will to renegotiate "forever".

The president believed Lerner, a longtime Republican strategist, was a card-carrying member of the "Never Trump" movement because he helped the conservative Club for Growth create ads as part of a multi-million dollar offensive against Trump during the GOP primaries.

Pence's team finally got wind of the controversy and after his plane landed, the vice president called Trump to plead Lerner's case.

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Kelly told his colleagues that Nick Ayers, Pence's chief of staff, didn't fully brief him about Lerner's past roles, Axios reported.

But just hours later, Lerner stepped down, or "stepped down".

A Pence spokeswoman, Alyssa Farah, says Lerner informed Pence about Sunday his choice was approved by Pence and he was withdrawing.

It didn't help that others in the White House were unconvinced of Lerner's foreign-policy credentials and anxious that he wouldn't be able to handle two jobs at once.

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