Gen. John Kelly, President Donald Trump’s chief of staff, reportedly runs a very tight ship, maintaining high standards of conduct, limiting what the president reads, and even scrutinizing who the president sees. That also extends to meetings with trusted aides, according to recent reports that Omarosa Manigault has been barred from attending certain gatherings.
The report comes from The New York Times, which said Friday that Kelly sends out invitations to planning meetings, which “now contain a clipped addendum — ‘principals only’ — with a stern warning that any subordinates who wander in will be immediately ejected.”
The Times reports that there is a list of aides who were in the habit of attending meetings unannounced and uninvited, that now may not do so. Among the names on the list is Manigault’s.
According to the report, Kelly believed that in order to instill a level of order in the White House, he needed “a No. 2 who is willing to be hated.” He therefore hired Kirstjen Nielsen, described as “his brusque, no-nonsense longtime aide.” Now an assistant to the president and Kelly’s principal deputy, Nielsen maintains the list of aides Kelly will not allow at serious meetings.
Manigault was a loyal figure during Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential run. After winning the White House, Trump appointed her as his chief advisor on African-American issues.
In August, Manigault walked off the stage during the National Association of Black Journalists convention in New Orleans, after the event’s moderator treated her unprofessionally.
Manigault has also attacked the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC), saying they were “showboating” and refusing to meet with Trump.
“Coming to the table over and over again to work through these issues is the only effective way to get where they wanted to go,” Manigault reportedly said. “And instead, they’re showboating and they’re actually shorting out their constituents that they committed to represent by not coming to meet with the president.”
As for Kelly, The Times reports that he’s interested in “taming his meandering, leaky, infighting-plagued West Wing staff” and creating a “normal” Administration. Time will tell if his brand of management style will work for the president, who is reportedly not a fan of being handled.
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