The media has been abuzz with rumors that White House Chief-of-Staff John Kelly will be resigning due to his frustration with the president. They were all wrong. In fact, Kelly has agreed to stay on until 2020 at President Trump’s request.
The Hill reports that “Kelly told members of the White House staff on Monday that Trump had asked him to stay in the White House, and that Kelly said he would abide by the request.”
Kelly’s agreement to stay follows him celebrating his first anniversary as White House chief-of-staff, where all appeared well. Further quelling rumors of tension, President Trump marked the occasion on Twitter with a photo of the two smiling alongside each other.
“One year today, right? He became my chief of staff, Gen. Kelly,” Trump said during a ceremony in the Oval Office.
Even with the rumors of Kelly’s Trump fatigue, his departure after one year would not exactly be abnormal for a chief-of-staff, a highly stressful and taxing job. As noted by The Hill, “it is not unusual for those serving in the position to do so for a relatively short time.”
After replacing ousted chief-of-staff Reince Priebus last year, Kelly quickly established himself as a no-nonsense leader by making it difficult for people both inside and outside the White House to gain access to Trump, which has not exactly gone over well with Trump loyalists.
When The Wall Street Journal reported in June that Kelly planned to resign his position within a month, Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney and Vice President Pence’s chief-of-staff, Nick Ayers, were both floated as potential replacements. The White House, however, denied the report, with White House spokeswoman Lindsay Walters saying that she “spoke to the president, who refuted this article.”
“He said it is absolutely not true and that it is fake news,” Walters said.