John Kelly Hits 1 Year As Chief Of Staff

Aug 03, 2018, 05:17
John Kelly Hits 1 Year As Chief Of Staff

Kelly has seen his status as chief of staff diminished in recent months, with the President circumventing numerous policies and protocols the retired Marine Corps general put in place when he entered the West Wing past year. If Kelly does indeed stay through 2020, and Trump loses his reelection, you could nearly imagine the chief of staff alternatively laughing and crying at having ridden this wild tiger to the very end.

The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly about private conversations.

The image belied a fraught relationship between Trump and Kelly, who has been credited with restoring a semblance of order to the chaotic West Wing - but at the cost of grating on the freewheeling commander-in-chief.

Kelly's allies have said he took the job out of a sense of duty and he has not exactly hidden his simmering dissatisfaction.

On Monday, Trump marked Kelly's anniversary by posting to Twitter a photo of the two men smiling in the Oval Office with the caption "Congratulations to General John Kelly".

If Kelly survives until 2020, he would be among the longest-serving White House chiefs of staff in American history. Speculation about his exit has flared for months, amid reports that Trump had cooled on the retired four-star general.

Unwilling to cede control to a powerful chief of staff again, Trump mused aloud to confidants that he might leave the job open, according to the official.

If Kelly stays on into 2019, he'll occupy the role during a re-election cycle, which is likely to downsize what already is a weakened role for him.

The Wall Street Journal first reported news of Kelly's plans. "He comes down for the day, and whatever he saw on Fox and Friends, he schedules meetings based on that", said one former White House official.

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