President Obama's aide David Axelrod and Press Secretary Robert Gibbs were forced out of Obama's innter circle by Jim Messina and David Plouffe with Obama - true to form - above the fray, leeting them fight it out druing the 2012 campaign.
- Axelrod wanted campaign manager Jim Messina fired, but he wound up the odd man out himself
- Palace intrigue led 'Axe' to refer to Messina and White House messaging chief David Plouffe as 'two strongmen running the Kremlin'
- The two men resented Axelrod for getting rich by taking a percentage of the hundreds of millions spent on campaign ads
- An aloof Obama stayed out of the way as his inner circle fought a political gladiator game that pushed out Axelrod and Press Secretary Robert Gibbs