John Kelly to Resign ‘In Coming Days’ - Staff Shakeup Likely

09 December, 2018, 11:50 | Author: Clarence Schmidt
  • Trump announces John Kelly is leaving

"John Kelly will be leaving toward the end of the year", the president said after walking outside his residence to address reporters gathered on the South Lawn.

"John Kelly will be leaving - I don't know if I can say 'retiring, '" Trump said per White House pool reports. "He's a great guy".

A source told Reuters last month that Trump was considering a replacement for Kelly.

White House advisers believe that Nick Ayers, Vice President Mike Pence's chief of staff, will be named acting chief of staff, four aides said.

"When he came in, he was a very controlling force that calmed down an undisciplined, frankly, White House", Baier said.

A White House shake-up is not out of the ordinary after USA midterms, especially when the President's party is faced with a major loss in one of the two chambers. That two-year commitment has been an obstacle for Ayers. Trump has chafed at Kelly's management style and resisted some of his moves to instill discipline in the West Wing and contain chaos.


The White House shake-up comes as Mr Trump prepares for what could be a challenging time from January when the Democrats take over the House of Representatives after the mid-term elections. Axios and CNN reported earlier that White House officials expect Kelly to resign soon.

Jeff Sessions - After months of being attacked and ridiculed by the president, the former senator was forced out on November 7 as the top U.S. law enforcement official. Trump advisers with an eye on 2020 have also urged the president to change his chief of staff to someone with experience in politics ahead of his re-election effort.

Mr Kelly had been credited with imposing order on a chaotic West Wing after his arrival in June 2017 from his post as homeland security secretary.

Since his appointment as special counsel, Mueller has met with the president's son-in-law, Jared Kushner; former legal counsel Don McGahn; former communications director Hope Hicks; senior aide Stephen Miller; former press secretary Sean Spicer; and Kelly's predecessor, former chief of staff Reince Priebus, according to multiple sources with direct knowledge.

Mr Ayers, 36, is the antithesis in resume and character to Mr Kelly, 68. But in the last months of his tenure, Kelly saw his status as chief of staff diminish.

President Trump also announced he was nominating Army chief of staff General Mark Milley as his next top military advisor - a new slap in the face for Pentagon chief Jim Mattis. Former White House Counsel Don McGahn was likewise forced out of his job after it was reported that he had cooperated extensively in Mueller's probe.

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