According to a Monday report in The Washington Examiner, President Donald J. Trump is not ready to part ways with his chief of staff, John Kelly.
According to the report, the president believes Kelly was “uninformed” about the allegations of spousal abuse against former White House staff secretary Rob Porter, which surfaced last week.
From the Examiner: In the midst of the scandal surrounding Porter, who spent months operating on an interim security clearance, White House chief of staff John Kelly has come under fire. Multiple outlets have reported that Kelly encouraged his colleagues to offer a different account of Porter’s exit from what actually transpired – one that would exonerate him from rumors that he was made aware of the allegations against Porter months ago and let him remain in the West Wing.
However, a source close to the White House said the president believes his chief of staff has become entangled in a mess he had no part in creating. And the president does not intend to replace Kelly because of it.
“Trump believes Kelly was uninformed because Porter lied to him,” the source said, noting that some staffers have pushed for Kelly’s ouster “but Trump is not ready to pull the trigger.”
Office of Management and Budget director Mick Mulvaney made similar statements during a talk show appearance on Sunday, accusing those who have called for Kelly to be fired of harboring personal grudges against him.
“I think all the stories about replacing General Kelly are mostly being fed by people who are unhappy that they’ve lost access to the president under General Kelly’s leadership as chief of staff,” Mulvaney told Fox News’ Chris Wallace.
“Trump first learned of the domestic abuse accusations against Porter on Wednesday when he was handed a copy of the Daily Mail article that broke the story,” the Examiner reports. ” Though Trump publicly defended Porter in comments to reporters on Friday, Axios reported Monday that the president has said privately he believes his former aide’s accusers.”
Porter resigned from his White House post last Wednesday, after two of his ex-wives said they suffered verbal, emotional, and domestic abuse at Porter’s hands while they were married to him.