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Trump chooses chief of the Army to be top military adviser

08 December 2018

File picture shows White House Chief of Staff John Kelly stepping off Air Force One as US President Donald Trump arrived to participate in a briefing on Hurricane Florence recovery efforts in Havelock, North Carolina, September 19, 2018. Trump is currently seeking a replacement for the top position, with Vice President Mike Pence's chief of staff Nick Ayers being the main contender right now. Ayers was important to Pence's arrival on the Trump ticket, worked at a high level on the transition and is considered deeply loyal to the Trump agenda.

A source told Reuters last month that Trump was considering a replacement for Kelly.

The White House senior staff meeting Friday morning was canceled, according to three officials.

Kelly's tenure working for Trump was pocked with controversies, and officials were often amazed at how he managed to survive.

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News of Kelly's imminent departure was first reported by Axios.

Trump had earlier pledged publicly that Kelly would remain through his first term in office, though many in the West Wing were skeptical.

But in the last months, Kelly has seen his status as chief of staff diminish.

Kelly, a decorated Marine Corps general, is widely regarded as one of the most well-respected and qualified members of the Trump administration.

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At times, Kelly was the source of his own downfall.

Trump has long admired Kelly for his military valour, but his lack of political experience and interest in campaign strategy has made him an imperfect fit leading the staff of a president who lives and breathes politics.

Barr, who also worked as AG for former President George HW Bush, replaces Jeff Sessions.

Task & Purpose contacted several officials at the Defense Department and military services, but none of them had been informed about Trump's pending announcement.

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"She's very talented, very smart, very quick, and I think she's going to be respected by all", Trump said.

Trump chooses chief of the Army to be top military adviser