Trump to Keep Kelly as His Chief of Staff Through 2020

Saul Bowman
August 3, 2018

The public show of confidence in Kelly, even if later reversed, appeared aimed at tamping down speculation about staff turnover, as well as projecting calm as the president gears up for his re-election campaign.

Though a White House spokesperson claimed at the time that Trump had given Kelly a formal job offer in advance, it was a lie.

Mr Kelly hit the one-year mark as Mr Trump's chief of staff Monday.

Kelly began as chief of staff in late July a year ago, taking over for Reince Priebus. His profile has dropped in recent months, amid reports that Trump had cooled on the retired four-star general who was credited with bringing order to the West Wing but who also was said to grate on the freewheeling president.

Still, Trump is known as a mercurial boss, whose feelings on key staffers can shift rapidly.

President Trump wants John Kelly to remain by his side.

Kelly's tenure was marred by his handling of the domestic abuse allegations against staff secretary Rob Porter, who resigned in February.

Kelly was appointed last July to succeed Reince Priebus, Trump's first chief of staff, after serving for the first six months of the administration as secretary of homeland security. He's accepted for himself a more circumscribed role, doing his best to ensure Trump has access to all the information he needs to make decisions. (It might have been more interesting and revealing if one or both of them had leapt up and stormed out of the room, but no dice.) So far no one is claiming that Kelly's relationship with Trump is anything other than grudgingly tolerable, sounding more like a old, bad marriage than a relatively new, dysfunctional employment situation.

The Wall Street Journal first reported news of Kelly's plans. He is often at the White House around 6 a.m. and leaves after 8 p.m. "He's a wonderful man".

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