Breaking news this evening as President Trump announced the replacement of his 2020 reelection campaign manager Brad Parscale with veteran GOP operative Bill Stepien. The transition announced Wednesday night came just days after an article in The Washington Post portrayed Parscale as self-promoting and aloof, noting that he featured prominently in an early Trump campaign ad — and that staffers complained he often took calls by his swimming pool at home, according to Fox News.
I am pleased to announce that Bill Stepien has been promoted to the role of Trump Campaign Manager. Brad Parscale, who has been with me for a very long time and has led our tremendous digital and data strategies, will remain in that role, while being a Senior Advisor to the…
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 16, 2020
Trump added: “Both were heavily involved in our historic 2016 win, and I look forward to having a big and very important second win together. This one should be a lot easier as our poll numbers are rising fast, the economy is getting better, vaccines and therapeutics will soon be on the way, and Americans want safe streets and communities!”
Parscale ran Trump’s digital campaign in 2016 and was credited with helping bring about his victory. According to CNN, White House adviser and Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner informed Parscale that he was being demoted. He was the longest-serving campaign manager on the Trump campaign, as Trump had a tendency to swap out new managers during 2016.
“Parscale was unaware until a few hours before the Wednesday night announcement that he was being demoted, a source familiar with the situation told CNN,” the report said.
President Trump announces Bill Stepien will be his new campaign manager & Brad Parscale will remain as digital & data manager.
Parscale has been under fire for weeks as GOP donors complained that he was enriching himself & rumors swirled that day to day operations were ignored.
— Emerald Robinson ✝️ (@EmeraldRobinson) July 16, 2020
Stepien is a longtime Trump adviser. After joining Trump’s campaign in the summer of 2016, he went on to become a White House political director. After the 2018 midterms, he left the White House to join the reelection effort as a consultant, according to Politico. He was recently promoted to deputy campaign manager.
Prior to joining the Trump’s campaign, Stepien served as a top political adviser to ex-New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who cut Stepien loose after another Christie aide testified that he told Stepien about the “Bridgegate” scheme in Fort Lee, N.J. as political retribution against the mayor. Stepien has denied knowing about the plan and was not charged with a crime.
Biden also shuffled his campaign team amid a disastrous stretch in his campaign. For Biden, the moves marked genuine shakeups that expanded and changed how his campaign operated, according to Fox News. Biden elevated Anita Dunn, effectively displacing his first campaign manager, Greg Schultz, after a fourth-place Iowa finish and after he was already headed for a second embarrassing finish in New Hampshire.