‘Adding a match to gasoline’: MSNBC panel stunned by surprise Mattis resignation
Jim Mattis (CNN/screen grab)

President Donald Trump was harshly criticized for his Twitter announcement of Defense Secretary Jim Mattis retiring from the Pentagon on MSNBC's "Meet the Press Daily" on Thursday.

Chuck Todd was hosting a discussion on the looming government shutdown when the news broke.

"Hang on," Todd interrupted. "As if the day didn't get weirder or nuttier, the president just tweeted that Jim Mattis -- Secretary of Defense -- is retiring."

"Dropping this, this feels like dropping a match on gasoline," Todd said.

Michael Steel, a former advisor to Jeb Bush and John Boehner, also had harsh words.

"This is the frustratingly self-defeating nature of the Trump presidency," Steel explained. "Success against ISIS -- the American military efforts to roll them back and contain them -- is one of the great success stories of the Trump administration."

"And declaring victory prematurely -- and then sacking or accepting resignation of the Defense Secretary -- feels like cutting off your nose to spite your face," he added.

"With Mattis gone, Lindsey Graham is going to go out of his mind," Todd predicted.