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Sarah Sanders leaving post as White House press secretary

By
Danielle Haynes
White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders announced Thursday that she will be leaving the White House at the end of the month. Photo by Alex Edelman/UPI
White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders announced Thursday that she will be leaving the White House at the end of the month. Photo by Alex Edelman/UPI | License Photo

June 13 (UPI) -- Sarah Sanders is leaving her post as White House secretary at the end of June, President Donald Trump announced Thursday.

Neither the cause of her departure nor her replacement were immediately revealed. Trump said she's returning to Arkansas to join the private sector.

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"After 3 1/2 years, our wonderful Sarah Huckabee Sanders will be leaving the White House at the end of the month and going home to the Great State of Arkansas," Trump tweeted.

"She is a very special person with extraordinary talents, who has done an incredible job! I hope she decides to run for Governor of Arkansas -- she would be fantastic. Sarah, thank you for a job well done!"

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Speaking at an event on second chance hiring, Trump praised Sanders as a "very fine woman" with "a great big heart."

Sanders described her time at the White House as "the honor of a lifetime." She promised to be an outspoken support of Trump.

"I couldn't be prouder to have had the opportunity to serve my country, and particularly to work for this president," she said.

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Sanders took over as press secretary in July 2017 after the departure of Sean Spicer. She served as Spicer's deputy during the first six months of Trump's tenure.

During her time as press secretary, the White House stopped holding regular formal press briefings, setting the record for longest span of time without one. The last daily press briefing at the White House was March 11, 94 days ago, when she and acting Office of Management and Budget Director Russ Vought unveiled Trump's budget.

Sanders came under fire in April when a report by special counsel Robert Mueller revealed she lied to reporters about Trump's firing of former FBI Director James Comey.

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"Sanders told this office that her reference to hearing from 'countless members of the FBI' was a 'slip of the tongue.' She also recalled that her statement in a separate press interview that rank-and-file FBI agents had lost confidence in Comey was a comment she made 'in the heat of the moment' that was not founded on anything," the Mueller report read.

Sanders' father, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, said Trump is losing "a great one" with his daughter's departure from the White House.

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