The Pentagon's top spokeswoman is dismissing a report that President Trump is considering firing Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson over her lack of enthusiasm for the new Space Force military branch.
"This is nonsense," Dana White said in a statement Friday. "The Department of Defense leadership team is focused on defending our great nation and working together to be worthy of the blood, treasure and faith entrusted to us by the American people."
White was responding to a story in Foreign Policy posted Thursday, which quoted three anonymous sources saying Trump may replace Wilson after the November midterm elections. One source said Wilson "is trying to undermine this part of the president's agenda from within."
The source was referring to Wilson's opposition to creating the Space Force. Wilson, along with Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, had opposed a plan floating in Congress last year to create a separate service branch within the Air Force Department. Trump this year went further, calling for a completely separate force, which would involve removing responsibilities from the Air Force. Space Force opponents say the move would add a layer of bureaucracy.
Last month, Wilson projected that creating the service could cost $13 billion over five years. Critics quickly accused her of inflating the numbers in order to kill the proposal.
Foreign Policy reported that top Space Force backer Rep. Mike Rogers, R-Ala., could be in line to replace Wilson if Trump removes her.