WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Donald Trump's new national security adviser said Thursday that he wants to reduce the White House foreign policy staff by half.
Robert O'Brien said that during the Obama administration the number of staffers swelled to more than 100.
He told employees at a National Security Council town hall late Thursday that he wants to bring the staff level back to where it was when Condoleezza Rice was national security adviser for President George W. Bush.
"That was about 100 staffers to give policy advice to the president and to help implement his decisions," O'Brien said on Fox Business' "Lou Dobbs Tonight."
"And that was with two wars going on" in Iraq and Afghanistan, he said.
"It just ballooned into a massive, you know, bureaucracy ... under the last administration."
The size of the NSC has fluctuated over the years. O'Brien did not it say how he planned to cut the staff. Many staffers are detailed to the NSC from other government agencies so the reductions could be made by not replacing them when their tours are over and they return to other agencies.