President Donald Trump has challenged his Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, to an IQ test, in a magazine interview that him asked about reports that Mr Tillerson had called him a moron.
“I think it’s fake news,” Mr Trump told Forbes, “but if he did that, I guess we’ll have to compare IQ tests. And I can tell you who is going to win.”
Last week Mr Tillerson called a news conference to deny reports that he was considering quitting, but did not refute an NBC News report that he had called his boss a moron after a July meeting at the Pentagon.
Earlier this month, Mr Trump publicly undercut the former Texas oilman by tweeting that he was “wasting his time” trying to negotiate with nuclear-armed North Korea.
Last week the New York Times reported that Mr Tillerson was astonished at how little Mr Trump grasps the basics of foreign policy.
According to the newspaper, quoting sources close to the secretary of state, Mr Trump has been irritated by Mr Tillerson’s body language during meetings.
Trump insists that the stories about Rex Tillerson insulting his intelligence – despite being heavily sourced – are “fake news”. Now, however, he’s lobbing one of his trademark counter-punches, just in case.
Mr Tillerson thinks he’s a moron? Well, he’s smarter than Rex, that’s for certain.