Photo: Saul Loeb / AFP / Getty Images

President Trump told reporters as he left the White House Tuesday that he made the decision to fire Secretary of State Rex Tillerson "by myself" and admitted that he "didn't really discuss it much" with Tillerson before announcing it on Twitter.

His reasoning: Trump said that he appreciated Tillerson's commitment the position, but that the two "disagreed on things." The president said that he and Pompeo are much more aligned, adding, "From day one, I have gotten along with Mike Pompeo."

Top quotes:

  • "I've worked with Mike Pompeo now for quite some time. Tremendous energy, tremendous intellect. We're always on the same wave length. The relationship has always been very good. That's what I need as secretary of state."
  • "I actually got along well with Rex. But really it was a different mindset. It was a different thinking ... I wish Rex a lot of good things … I think Rex will be much happier now."
  • "I’m really at a point where we're getting very close to having the cabinet and other things that I want."

Go deeper

Updated 3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Trump's Tucker mind-meld

Photo illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photo: Roy Rochlin/Getty Images and BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP via Getty Images

If you want to understand the rhetorical roots of Trump's Independence Day speech at Mount Rushmore, go back and watch Tucker Carlson's monologues for the past six weeks.

Between the lines: Trump — or rather his speechwriter Stephen Miller — framed the president's opposition to the Black Lives Matter protest movement using the same imagery Carlson has been laying out night after night on Fox.

Updated 5 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 6 p.m. ET: 11,366,145 — Total deaths: 532,644 — Total recoveries — 6,154,138Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 6 p.m. ET: 2,874,396 — Total deaths: 129,870 — Total recoveries: 906,763 — Total tested: 35,512,916Map.
  3. States: Photos of America's pandemic July 4 ICU beds in Arizona hot spot near capacity — Houston mayor warns about hospitals
  4. Public health: U.S. coronavirus infections hit record highs for 3 straight days.
  5. Politics: Former Trump official Tom Bossert says face masks “are not enough”
  6. World: Mexican leaders call for tighter border control as infections rise in U.S.
  7. Sports: Sports return stalked by coronavirus
  8. 1 📽 thing: Drive-in movie theaters are making a comeback.

Bolton's hidden aftershocks

Photo illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

The news media has largely moved on, but foreign government officials remain fixated on John Bolton's memoir, "The Room Where It Happened."

Why it matters: Bolton's detailed inside-the-Oval revelations have raised the blood pressure of allies who were already stressed about President Trump's unreliability.