Donald Trump’s top economic adviser Gary Cohn quitting post over steel tariffs

WATCH ABOVE: Gary Cohn is set to step down in his role as top economic adviser, a move reports say is linked to Trump's recent proposed tariffs on aluminum and steel imports.

Gary Cohn will step down from his role as U.S. President Donald Trump’s top economic adviser in the coming weeks.

Sources told the New York Times, the straw that broke the camel’s back for Cohn was Trump’s recent announcement of tariffs on aluminum and steel imports.

READ MORE: Countries should cut the U.S. a deal to avoid steel tariffs, Donald Trump says

“It has been an honor to serve my country and enact pro-growth economic policies… I am grateful to the president for giving me this opportunity and wish him and the administration great success in the future,” Cohn said in a statement released by the White House.

Cohn, who heads the National Economic Council, is pro-free trade and is reportedly concerned the potential tariffs would be a detriment to U.S. growth.

WATCH: Trump says “everybody wants to work in the White House”

This was not the first time Cohn was at odds with Trump. He wrote a letter of resignation last summer after Trump’s response to the violence in Charlottesville, Va., but never submitted it.


Cohn, a former president and chief operating officer of investment bank Goldman Sachs, was one of a number of Wall Street veterans tapped by Trump for senior jobs after the 2016 presidential election.

READ MORE: White House disputes claim Gary Cohn faked bad reception to get Donald Trump off call

On Tuesday afternoon, during a press conference alongside Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven, Trump was asked about reports of chaos inside the White House and rumours of potential departures.

“It is a great place to be working. Many, many people want every single job,” Trump responded. “You know, I read where ‘Oh gee, maybe people don’t want to work for Trump,’ but believe me, everybody wants to work in the White House. They all want a piece of that Oval Office. They all want a piece of the West Wing.”

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Trump said he prefers to have differing opinions on his staff.

“I like conflict,” he explained. “I like two people having different points of view and I certainly have that and then I make a decision.”

Cohn is just the latest in a seemingly endless stream of Trump advisers and aides to leave the White House.

READ MORE: White House communications director Hope Hicks resigns, Trump says he’ll miss her

Just last Wednesday, communications director Hope Hicks announced she would also be departing from her role.

Notable firings and resignations from President Donald Trump’s White House since he took office last year:

– March 6, 2018: Economic adviser Gary Cohn

– Feb. 28, 2018: Communications director Hope Hicks

– Feb. 27, 2018: Deputy communications director Josh Raffel

– Feb. 7, 2018: Staff secretary Rob Porter

– Dec. 13, 2017: Communications director for the White House Office of Public Liaison Omarosa Manigault Newman

– Dec. 8, 2017: Deputy national security adviser Dina Powell

– Sept. 29, 2017: Health and human services secretary Tom Price

– Aug. 25, 2017: National security aide Sebastian Gorka

– Aug. 18, 2017: Chief strategist Steve Bannon

– July 31, 2017: Communications director Anthony Scaramucci

– July 28, 2017: Chief of staff Reince Priebus

– July 21, 2017: Press secretary Sean Spicer

– May 30, 2017: Communications director Michael Dubke

– May 9, 2017: FBI director James Comey

– Feb. 13, 2017: National security adviser Michael Flynn

*With files from the Associated Press and Reuters 

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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