Trump's starting to panic: Corey Lewandowsi fired as campaign manager amid huge staff shakeup

The GOP's presumptive nominee cans his campaign manager and reshuffles staff as poll numbers dip to record lows

By Sophia Tesfaye

Senior Politics Editor

Published June 20, 2016 2:18PM (EDT)

Corey Lewandowski, Donald Trump   (AP/Charlie Neibergall)
Corey Lewandowski, Donald Trump (AP/Charlie Neibergall)

Even as Donald Trump remains personally impervious to growing panic about a clear lack of any general election strategy, his campaign staff and close advisers have apparently had enough -- pushing for sudden and sweeping major changes.

With the average of polls showing rival Hillary Clinton ahead six percentage points less than a month before the GOP convention in Cleveland, embattled Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski has been fired.

“The Donald J. Trump Campaign for President, which has set a historic record in the Republican Primary having received almost 14 million votes, has today announced that Corey Lewandowski will no longer be working with the campaign,” the campaign spokeswoman, Hope Hicks, said in a statement, according to the New York Times. “The campaign is grateful to Corey for his hard work and dedication and we wish him the best in the future.”

According to NBC News, Trump called Lewandowski this morning to inform him of his firing after an emergency meeting with family members and top advisers to right the ship, and to plot a more serious campaign strategy.

The announcement comes hours after an explosive GQ profile of Hicks revealed disturbing incidents of alleged abuse directed at the 27-year-old national press secretary from Lewandowski.

“You made a big f***ing mistake; you’re f***ing dead to me,” Lewandowski allegedly told Hicks after she expressed interest in leaving the campaign recently, bringing her to tears, according to former Trump operative Sam Nunberg.

While Lewandowski denied GQ's reporting, the hotheaded campaign manager, of course, first grabbed the spotlight away from his boss when he was arrested for yanking a female Breitbart writer, an act he denied happened but was caught on camera. While the charges were eventually dropped, Trump remained loyal and committed to Lewandowski even as reports emerged that Lewandowski had a history of making abusive, sexist, and sexual remarks to his female coworkers.

According to reaction from at least one "senior adviser" to the Trump campaign, Lewandowski's ouster was welcome news:

By Sophia Tesfaye

Sophia Tesfaye is Salon's senior editor for news and politics, and resides in Washington, D.C. You can find her on Twitter at @SophiaTesfaye.

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