As the News Blender reported the current Chief of Staff to President Trump, John Kelly, is said to be leaving by the first of the new year. President Trump confirmed the reports, stating at the time he would announce the new Chief of Staff in a “day or two.”
That was Saturday December 8th, it’s now a week later with still no named replacement.
Early reporting had the front-runner to replace Kelly as current Vice President Pence’s Chief of Staff, Nick Ayers.
Instead, as CNBC reported Ayers will not replace Kelly and is scheduled to depart the Trump Administration, “by year’s end,” citing a commitment Ayers made to returning to Georgia with his family.
Ayers confirmed his departure, via Twitter, though he added he would continue to work with the “#MAGA team to advance the cause.”
Another floated name was current Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC), but The Hill reported Wednesday that Meadows was out of the running according to a White House Official citing the need for Meadows to remain in Congress, where Republican’s will be the minority come January 2019.
Meadows later released a statement, via The Hill, that confirmed the news stating, “I’ve had the best job in the world, representing the people of western North Carolina and working alongside President Trump these last two years to give the forgotten men and women of America a voice in their government. I know the president has a long list of tremendous candidates for his next chief of staff, and whomever it is will have my total support moving forward.”
On Friday The Wall Street Journal reported that former Governor of New Jersey Chris Christie, has asked the President to be removed from consideration, just a day after he met with President Trump to discuss the position.
Christie, via the linked article, called the offer an honor, but said, “now is not the right time for me or my family to undertake this serious assignment.” He asked that President Trump, “no longer keep me in any of his considerations for this post.”
The Journal notes that, “White House officials and people close to the administration earlier Friday had described Mr. Christie as a leading candidate for the job.”
ABC News reports that according to “sources with knowledge of the President’s thinking,” those still under consideration are:
- Acting Attorney General Matt Whitaker
- Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin
- U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer
- Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney
- counselor to the president Kellyanne Conway
Deputy Press Secretary Hogan Gidley spoke with reporters Friday and said via the ABC News article that they expect President Trump to make an announcement pretty quickly, but Gidley added that President Trump might also make a deal with Kelly to extend his tenure as Chief of Staff:
“We expect him to make an announcement pretty quickly. Obviously if the president and the chief of staff make another deal and extend it, they can do that. It’s their prerogative to do so. Right now, currently, John Kelly is expected to leave at the first of the year.”ABC News, 12/14/18
Reuters reports that another name being floated by some “advisers in and out of the White House -,” is Jared Kushner current Senior Adviser to the President, and also President Trump’s son-in-law.
President Trump announced via Twitter that the winner for next “Acting” Chief of Staff is Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney.