Sen. Graham Thanks Tillerson for Service, Touts Pompeo

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CEO Rex Tillerson will serve as secretary of state.

President Trump has removed Rex Tillerson as Secretary of State, and replaced him with C.I.A. Director Mike Pompeo.

Tillerson had said earlier he would not quit his position, despite reports of disagreements with the White House. That's according to current and former USA intelligence officials, who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because they weren't authorized to discuss the issue.

Tillerson and Trump have butted heads in the past, most notably when reports of Tillerson describing Trump as "a moron" broke in October.

"And we commenced the steps to dramatically increase not just the scope, but the effectiveness of the sanctions" he said. We don't know where that would be ((overlaid with pix of Pompeo)) but we do know that Mike Pompeo will play a crucial role in preparing President to those talks. "We will be at the center of providing the intelligence picture to the president and to the secretary of state, so that each of them can understand how it is we can most likely achieve the president's objective". "We got along actually quite well, but we disagreed on things", Trump told reporters. "He's a good man who did some good work under hard circumstances". As a member of Congress, where he represented the fourth district in Kansas, Pompeo voted for free trade agreements, including the Korea Trade Agreement and the Columbia Trade Promotion Agreement. "He will miss his colleagues at the Department of State and enjoyed working together with the Department of Defense in an uncommonly robust relationship", Goldstein added.

Hours later, Goldstein was sacked for suggesting Tillerson learned of his dismissal by tweet.

In recent months, Haspel has been running the day-to-day operations at the agency, while Pompeo spent a lot of time at the White House, according to former and current CIA officials with knowledge of the matter and a former White House official.

"It was clear on Friday", one of the two officials said.

State department officials have told reporters that Rex Tillerson found out he'd lost his job after the US President tweeted about it.

Tillerson announced he was delegating all his responsibilities to Deputy Secretary of State John Sullivan effective at the end of the day Tuesday and that his commission as secretary of state would terminate at midnight March 31.

"I had a very good conversation with Director Pompeo this morning and look forward to meeting with him soon", Corker said in a statement. "Fawning over Putin is poor preparation for being the top diplomat of the United States of America".

Meanwhile, Trump's initial tweet about his decision to replace Tillerson with CIA Director Mike Pompeo came just before 9 am ET - meaning a little over three hours had passed before the president's phone call "a little after noontime". But, with no diplomatic or political experience, he had run-in's with President Trump.

Lawmakers noted that it's uncertain whether Haspel or Pompeo can muster the 60 votes necessary for their Senate confirmations. Tillerson was pressed during his confirmation hearings about his relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin while he led Exxon. So he ordered Mr. Tillerson to start. Trump had also previously criticized Tillerson's negotiating skills on Twitter.

As for Tillerson, he didn't mention Trump at all in a speech he gave about his impending departure. In his announcement pulling out of the deal previous year, Trump said it was "very unfair at the highest level to the United States".

Nearly from the get-go, Tillerson, the former CEO of Irving-based Exxon Mobil, seemed out of sorts and out of step with his mercurial boss. He has also criticized special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian meddling in the election and potential ties to his campaign.

Evans Revere, a former senior U.S. diplomat who dealt with North Korea under President George W Bush, said Trump's move sends "a bad signal about the role of diplomacy". He has largely toed Trump's policy lines and has argued for the restoration of the National Security Agency's mass data collection programs, which were ended after former NSA contractor Edward Snowden brought them to the attention of the world.