Paul Manafort resigned as Donald Trump's campaign chairman Friday, days after the GOP presidential hopeful brought in Breitbart News' Steve Bannon as campaign CEO.
"I am very appreciative for his great work in helping to get us where we are today, and in particular his work guiding us through the delegate and convention process," Trump said in a statement. "Paul is a true professional and I wish him the greatest success."
Earlier this week, Trump turned to Bannon to head the floundering campaign and named veteran pollster Kellyanne Conway as campaign manager. The announcement of the changes said Manafort would stay on as chairman of the campaign.
Manafort, 67, had drawn scrutiny after recent reports linked him to former Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych, a Vladimir Putin ally whose ouster led to the Russia's intervention in Ukraine.
The New York Times reported on Sunday that secret ledgers showed $12.7 million in undisclosed cash payments had been designated for Manafort from the Yanukovych administration. In a statement Monday, Manafort called the report "unfounded, silly and nonsensical," and said he had never taken an "off-the-books cash payment" nor worked for the governments of Ukraine or Russia.
On Thursday, The Associated Press reported that emails it obtained show that a firm run by Manafort orchestrated a covert Washington lobbying operation on behalf of Yanukovych's party to influence American public opinion between 2012 and 2014. Manafort did not comment when reached by the AP on Thursday, the news organization said.