Trump Campaign Shakes Up Team, Re-Assigning COO Michael Glassner

( Jared Kushner is making some moves on President Donald Trump’s re-election campaign team.

After a Tulsa rally that promised huge crowds but disappointed in a big way, Kushner will replace Michael Glassner, who was the campaign’s chief operating officer, with Jeff DeWit, who served in that position for Trump’s 2016 campaign.

A Politico report quoted three people who were familiar with the situation, who said it’s a way to place internal blame for the debacle in Tulsa. While Trump’s campaign team said there were close to a million sign-ups for the June 20 rally, there were many empty seats in the arena, and a planned outdoor speech after was cancelled.

One source quoted by Axios said Glassner wasn’t to blame for the Tulsa mess-up, saying:

“Michael didn’t really make many mistakes [at Tulsa]. He did what he always did, and it just didn’t work post-COVID. I think he knew he was going to take the punishment for this. It was on his watch.”

Tim Murtaugh, a Trump campaign spokesman, said the move was “not a reaction to Tulsa.” Glassner will take on a new role helping the campaign oversee legal battles. As Murtaugh said:

“Michael Glassner is moving into the long-term role of navigating the many legal courses we face, including suits against major media outlets, some of which will likely extend beyond the end of the campaign. He is one of the founding members of Team Trump, and his dedication to the success of the president is unmatched.”

A second source quoted by Axios said the plan was for Glassner to always transition into a different role eventually, as he “was never intended to be the chief operating officer for the final stretch.”

DeWit played a key role in Trump’s 2016 win. The former state treasurer of Arizona, he was nominated by Trump to serve as the chief operating officer at NASA. He held that position until he stepped down from it earlier in 2020.

Now, in his “new” old position, DeWit will once again oversee budgeting as well as the planning and logistics of Trump’s rallies and events. Because of the coronavirus pandemic, Trump hasn’t hit the road as often as he may have liked at this point. The campaign is reportedly weighing the possibility of holding smaller-scale events, but nothing has been scheduled just yet.

The “final stretch,” as the Axios source described it, is definitely upon us, with only four months until Election Day in November. With Trump currently polling behind presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden, the time is now to make changes for a late-stage push.

Polling numbers are varied at this stage, though. While initial numbers reported earlier in June showed Trump significantly behind Biden, others released in recent days showed the president only roughly 4 percentage points behind — which is within the allowable margin of error.

Four months is still a lot of time to elicit change, and the move by the Trump campaign is evidence of that.