Published December 13, 2017
There might be more to Omarosa’s ‘resignation’ than meets the eye.
After the White House announced Wednesday that “Apprentice” star turned White House aide Omarosa Manigault Newman will leave the Trump administration, The Wall Street Journal reported that her departure was abrupt – describing her exit as confrontational – but the Secret Service pushed back on the report.
An unnamed White House official told the Journal that Manigault Newman was “physically dragged and escorted off the campus” late Tuesday.
The details of Manigault Newman’s departure remain murky. Asked by Fox News whether she was fired, a White House aide referred back to a brief statement from White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders.
It said: “Omarosa Manigault Newman resigned yesterday to pursue other opportunities. Her departure will not be effective until January 2018. We wish her the best in future endeavors and are grateful for her service.”
The Secret Service issued a statement late Wednesday saying it was “not involved in the termination process or the escort off of the complex. Our only involvement in this matter was to deactivate the individual’s pass which grants access to the complex.”
Trump later thanked Manigault Newman for her work.
"Thank you Omarosa for your service! I wish you continued success," Trump tweeted shortly after the Secret Service released its statement.
Tuesday was her last day, though Jan. 20 is the official exit date.
Manigault Newman joined the administration as director of communications for the White House Office of Public Liaison, which was designed to garner outside support for the president’s agenda.
But she reportedly has drawn scrutiny from White House Chief of Staff John Kelly.
The former “Apprentice” contestant recently drew press attention after she brought her 39-person bridal party inside the White House this past spring for an “extended” photo shoot in the Rose Garden. It is unclear whether she had permission. She was reportedly banned from posting any of the photos online by White House officials citing security and ethical concerns.
Manigault Newman’s decision comes at the start of what’s expected to be a round of departures heading into the new year.
The White House said last week that deputy national security adviser Dina Powell will leave the administration early next year.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.