Sean Spicer Quits as Trump's White House Press Secretary

Spicer quits after Trump taps Anthony Scaramucci as the White House's new communications director

White House spokesman Sean Spicer gestures during a press briefing at the White House in Washington, DC, on June 20, 2017.
NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP

Sean Spicer, the White House press secretary, resigned on Friday morning following U.S. President Donald Trump's appointment of Anthony Scaramucci as the White House's new communications director, ending a brief, turbulent tenure that gained him global notoriety.

According to Scaramucci, Spicer will be replaced by Sarah Sanders.

Spicer tweeted Friday that he will continue in the role until the end of August.

Spicer has been a frequent target of criticism for his performance at the White House lectern during daily news briefings, although President Donald Trump has stood by him through a variety of controversies. Spicer was the Republican National Committee's senior strategist during the presidential campaign last year.

Parodied memorably on the Saturday Night Live sketch comedy show for his combative encounters with the White House press corps, Spicer became one of the Trump administration's most recognized figures after taking the job in December. 

He was sometimes targeted by critics for what they said were false or misleading statements. In recent weeks, Spicer has less frequently taken the lectern in the White House press room.

Trump picked Wall Street financier Anthony Scaramucci, a long-time supporter, to be his White House communications director on Friday, a White House official said.

Currently at the Export-Import Bank, Scaramucci is expected to start his new job in August, the official said. No other changes were immediately expected in a communications operation that also includes press secretary Spicer and his deputy, Sarah Sanders, the official said. 

The appointment comes as the White House deals with questions around a special counsel probe and several congressional investigations into alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election and potential collusion with Trump's campaign. 

The communications position has been vacant since Michael Dubke resigned in May as communications director. Spicer has been serving a dual role as press secretary and communications director since Dubke left. 

The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said Scaramucci was interviewed by Trump on Friday morning and the job had been offered and accepted.

Scaramucci, a Republican fundraiser and founder of Skybridge Capital, was earlier offered the post of U.S. ambassador to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development in Paris.