Donald Trump fired his controversial campaign manager Corey Lewandowski Monday, unleashing a major shake-up as he comes under pressure from his closest advisers, particularly his family members, to urgently reset his struggling presidential campaign.
According to CNN, Lewandowki’s abrupt departure is the campaign’s most significant staff change to date, and signals an acknowledgment from Trump himself that an overhaul is necessary ahead of the general election. The candidate has suffered major setbacks since becoming the GOP’s presumptive nominee last month, coming under intense criticism from party leaders, major donors and rank-and-file Republicans for an array of issues — including most recently, his response to last weekend’s terrorist attack in Orlando that killed 49 people.
“The Donald J. Trump Campaign for President, which has set a historic record in the Republican Primary having received almost 14 million votes, has today announced that Corey Lewandowski will no longer be working with the campaign,” Trump spokeswoman Hope Hicks said in a statement Monday.
“The campaign is grateful to Corey for his hard work and dedication and we wish him the best in the future.”
The decision to fire Lewandowski was made swiftly in a Monday morning weekly meeting with Trump’s family members, a Trump adviser said.
Playing a pivotal role in convincing Trump to take action against Lewandowski was the candidate’s daughter, Ivanka Trump. She had been critical of Lewandowski for months and this was not the first time that she had leaned on her father to part ways with his top aide. Contributing to Ivanka Trump’s recent dissatisfaction with Lewandowski were intensifying tensions between Lewandowski and Ivanka Trump’s husband, Jared Kushner, an influential force behind the scenes. One source said rumors swirled that Lewandowski had attempted to plant negative stories in the press about Kushner — a final straw for Ivanka Trump.