President Trump once instructed Secretary of State Rex Tillerson to eat a plate of wilted Caesar salad while the two were in China, according to a new report.
During a five-country tour of Asia in November, Trump worried that not eating the salad would be perceived as rude by the Chinese, the Wall Street Journal reported. As a result, he told Tillerson to eat the greens as they dined in a private room in China’s Great Hall of the People.
“Rex,” Trump reportedly said, “eat the salad.”
Tillerson laughed at the comment in response, but the exchange highlighted the occasionally awkward relationship between Trump and Tillerson.
The report comes after Trump revealed Tuesday morning that Tillerson was being booted from his post and CIA Director Mike Pompeo would take his place, if confirmed by Congress.
Tillerson and Trump have had a rocky relationship during Tillerson’s tenure at the State Department. In July, Tillerson held a press conference to refute a report from NBC News that claimed Tillerson had called Trump a “moron” several months before.
A State Department press spokesperson denied that Tillerson had used the term to describe Trump, although Tillerson never directly answered whether he had used it or not.
Additionally, Trump publicly rebuked Tillerson in October for “wasting his time” seeking diplomatic conversations with North Korea. Yet, just days ago, Trump agreed to meet with North Korea’s leader Kim Jong Un in the next several months.
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