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Trump ghostwriter ridicules belief John Kelly’s replacement will reel president in

08 December 2018

John Kelly is expected to resign as White House chief of staff in the coming days, two sources familiar with the situation unfolding in the West Wing tell CNN.

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

Trump spoke to reporters outside the White House, called Kelly a "great guy" and said it will be formally announced in the next few days.

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One senior administration official said Friday that it's clear Kelly will be leaving, though it's not certain that the departure was imminent as CNN reported.

In a deep dive into the career of Nick Ayers, who now serves as a top aide to Vice President Mike Pence, Politico asked author Tony Schwartz what he thought about the 36-year-old Ayers who has the strong support of Pence, as well as Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump.

Still, both are said to be ready for Kelly to move on.

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But President Donald Trump is apparently treating the retired Marine general like he's already gone.

Trump had earlier pledged publicly that Kelly would remain through his first term in office, though many in the West Wing were skeptical. In recent months, the chief of staff's power has ebbed, with administration policies and decisions being guided more by the president's gut instincts than by Kelly's processes.

Trump has long admired Kelly for his military valor, 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. He has complained repeatedly that Kelly is not politically savvy.

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Trump, meanwwhile, announced Saturday that he's picked a battle-hardened commander who oversaw troops in Iraq and Afghanistan to be the nation's next top military adviser. It is true that there is little chemistry remaining between the two men, the people said - even though Trump only months ago asked Kelly to stay on through 2020, and the general agreed. On Friday, he announced that he had picked William Barr for attorney general and Heather Nauert for United Nations ambassador.

Trump ghostwriter ridicules belief John Kelly’s replacement will reel president in