A series of leaks coming from the White House are the result of "political payback" toward President Donald Trump, and has "no role in our system," former Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove said Wednesday, and he is concerned about the growing power struggle in the Trump administration.
"This is political payback, in my opinion, either by people who served in the Obama administration or by intelligence community officials who are upset about the comments that the president-elect made before he got sworn in," Rove, who served with former President George W. Bush, told Fox News' "America's Newsroom" program.
"That's revenge and it has no role in our system and could be poisonous to the relationship between the president and the intelligence community."
Following the resignation this week of national security adviser Michael Flynn, there remains two major questions, Rove said: Where the leaks are coming from and why Trump kept Flynn in the administration for several weeks after he learned that he had withheld information about the nature of the communications he'd had with Russians.
"I think the president is very right to be deeply concerned about the flow of information from the most classified information that the government may have being put into the hands of media outlets," said Rove.
But the bigger question, he said, is the length of time Flynn remained with the administration.
"On Jan.26, the White House is informed about Flynn's conversations with the Russians and it takes until Monday of this week, basically almost three weeks, to get to a place where this issue is resolved. That is sort of slow-moving. There is more to the White House story."
In addition, Rove said he believes there is evidence showing there are competing power centers in the West Wing, and staffers are vying with each other at an "unprecedented level for this early in the administration."
"There is not a clarity of who is in charge," Rove said. "That's why we got the executive order rolled out on immigration without the secretary of Homeland Security being able to be in a meeting with the president to say, 'I object to elements of it,' and why things were rushed on that. It is why they're losing control of the narratives."
Rove said he'd be concerned about the leaks that are coming out, but even more worried that Trump was elected by voters who "wanted their economy improved, jobs created and paychecks grow and the image that we have in this fourth week of the administration has little with nothing to do with the economy. The control of the narrative is being lost by the White House."
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