White House shuffle in offing?
Washington — The President's communications chief calls the widespread media speculation about a prospective high-level administration shuffle ''largely gossip,'' Monitor correspondent Godfrey Sperling Jr. writes.
David Gergen, White House director of communications, says the President hasn't even given thought to future personnel in the White House and in the Cabinet. That will come in November, he says. And the shakeup, if any, will probably be relatively mild, he says.
''You look back at Reagan when he was governor,'' Mr. Gergen says, ''and you find that he was quite supportive of his people.''
Mr. Gergen said he saw ''no change'' in the President's ''big four'' - James Baker, William Clark, Michael Deaver, and Edwin Meese. ''Reagan feels very comfortable with the collegial system around him, and will want to keep it going ,'' he says.
''What about Deaver's talk of leaving?'' a reporter at a breakfast session asked. ''I hope Deaver stays on,'' Gergen said.
''What about Gergen, himself, and his plans?'' someone asked. ''I will be reassessing, seeing where I can be most helpful,'' said Gergen. ''Possibly this could mean my finding something else to do.''
One factor in determining whether he stays on, Gergen says, is who remains on around him. ''I'd like to see who is on the White House team,'' he said, indicating that what happens with Jim Baker might have bearing on whether Gergen stays on. He then added that he had heard nothing leading him to believe that Mr. Baker wouldn't remain. ''I hope he stays on,'' he said. ''He's done a terrific job as chief of staff.''
Asked about his own job (''Has there been a lot of infighting around you?''), Gergen smiled and said: ''It's been exciting.''