Outgoing Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats disrupted a meeting his deputy, Sue Gordon, was holding on election security to urge her to resign from her post.
The abrupt interruption on Thursday, reported by CNN, happened shortly before Gordon submitted her letter of resignation later that day.
She was next in line to be acting spy chief when Coats first announced his intent to retire late last month, but reports indicated the president was going to pick someone else to oversee the U.S. intelligence community until a permanent replacement was approved by the Senate.
Democrats criticized the president for overlooking Gordon, arguing his refusal to pick the veteran intelligence official to be acting spy chief underscored his disdain for someone who might advise him on national security matters that clash with his views.
Coats and Gordon are both slated to resign on Thursday.
Trump chose Rep. John Ratcliffe to be his nominee to replace Coats, but he announced last week he was dropping Ratcliffe as his pick amid scrutiny over the Texas Republican’s credentials.
In announcing Gordon’s resignation, Trump said she “is a great professional with a long and distinguished career.”
Trump’s pick for acting director of national intelligence is Joseph Maguire, a retired Navy vice admiral and the director of the National Counterterrorism Center.
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