The White House on Wednesday asked all 18 of former President Donald Trump’s appointees to the boards of the nation’s military academies, including former adviser Kellyanne Conway, press secretary Sean Spicer and national security adviser H.R. McMaster, to resign by Wednesday evening or be dismissed.
Trump had filled some of the positions at West Point, the Naval Academy and the Air Force Academy, in the final couple months of his presidency. They come with three-year terms, which President Joe Biden is cutting short.
A White House official confirmed the White House sent letters out today and that the appointees had until 6:00 p.m. to resign, or they would be terminated.
The boards of visitors are like boards of trustees who oversee affairs at a university; the president can appoint six people to each, while Congress appoints the rest.
Several of Trump’s appointees were highly political and controversial, and some pushed back on Twitter.
The former director of the White House budget office, Russ Vought, appointed to the board of the Naval Academy, posted the letter he received on Twitter, with the caption, “No. It’s a three year term.”
Spicer, appointed to the Naval Academy as well, tweeted his letter, too, suggesting Biden should focus on Afghanistan.
Conway, meanwhile, appointed to the board of the Air Force Academy, said Biden should resign instead — then suggested she was kidding.
“I will let others evaluate whether they think Kellyanne Conway and Sean Spicer and others were qualified or not political, to serve on these boards,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Wednesday. “But the president’s qualification requirements are not your party registration. They are whether you’re qualified to serve and whether you are aligned with the values of this administration.”
Biden wanted “nominees and people serving on these boards who are qualified to serve on them and who are aligned with [his] values,” Psaki said.
Among others being asked to resign are those Trump appointed to the board of the U.S. Military Academy, McMaster and former Gen. Jack Keane, who often appears on Fox News.