In a White House under siege, something had to change.
Press secretary Sean Spicer’s resignation Friday let off a pressure valve, allowing an administration that is being pummeled on multiple and multiplying fronts the chance, at least for once, to dictate its own story.
But Spicer’s departure after the most fraught six months of antagonism between the press and a West Wing that anyone can remember is just one move in a shuffle of personnel and tactics that augurs an aggressive White House fightback that is likely to intensify the current discord in Washington.
Trump has beefed up his legal team and escalated his rhetoric in an apparent attempt to discredit special counsel Robert Mueller, and any results of his probe into alleged collusion between his campaign team and Russian officials.
And in a shake-up in the communications team, he brought in Anthony Scaramucci, a swaggering, New York wheeler-and-dealer, to revive his political brand and promoted Sarah Huckabee Sanders to replace Spicer.
Trump appears to be trying to revive his organization in an attempt to break out of a prolonged funk that has to a great extent wasted the first six months of his term — a time when presidents are usually at the apex of their power.
But the reshuffle will not address what many critics see as the root of the crises that are assailing the White House — the behavior and political conduct of the President himself. Scaramucci made that much clear.