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White House Arrivals & Departures

Irons

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Ha, I love the internets!

agentcommonsense says:
October 9, 2018 at 1:51 pm

Dec 9, 2015 – Nikki Haley did not mince words on Tuesday when she called Donald Trump’s proposed ban on Muslims entering the United States “absolutely un-American” …

Nikki Haley: Donald Trump Didn’t Win On GOP …

Nikki Haley: Anyone but Donald Trump –

Nikki Haley,, Donald Trump is driving the Republican Party into the abyss.

Nikki Haley described as “scary” the prospect of a Donald Trump nomination as the Republican
candidate for president.


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  • feralcatsblog says:
    October 9, 2018 at 2:33 pm
    I think Trump only wanted her ‘inside the tent’ so she wouldn’t be pissing on it from the outside.

  • toofunny.gif
    . . .
    thumbsup.gif

 

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Nikki Haley was facing a formal complaint over ethics after series of private jet flights funded by businessmen from her native South Carolina

  • Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington filed the complaint Monday
  • It referenced seven flights on luxury aircraft that the UN ambassador disclosed on her 2017 form
  • All were provided by South Carolina businessmen, for flights taken by Haley and her husband
  • Haley said they were due to existing friendships, but ethics rules prohibit gifts due to an official position
  • Haley stunned Washington she she revealed Tuesday she will resign her post
  • A series of Trump officials have fended off flight scandals, and former Health and Human Services secretary Tom Price resigned after flights were revealed
  • Haley said there were 'no personal reasons' for her departure but that public officials should be term-limited
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/ar...plaint-ethics-series-private-jet-flights.html
 

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Analysis: ‘Something doesn’t smell right’: The curious timing of Nikki Haley’s exit

Washington Post
Aaron Blake
1 hr ago

This post has been updated.

Nikki Haley is resigning as U.S. ambassador to the United Nations. And the timing is raising eyebrows.

President Trump and Haley held a quickly arranged media availability Tuesday morning in the White House, shortly after Axios’s Jonathan Swan broke the news of her impending exit. Haley said her resignation was simply about needing a break after six years as South Carolina governor and two at the United Nations, and Trump said Haley even previewed a desire to leave as long as six months ago.

The two were obviously eager to downplay the idea that this was hasty. But if it wasn’t, that might make the timing even odder.

If this was long planned, it was apparently one of the best-kept secrets in a very leaky White House. The news reportedly blindsided those in the foreign policy establishment, the White House and even members of Haley’s staff.

Haley’s exit is due at the end of the year, which means she’ll be around for as much as 12 more weeks. But she and the White House chose to announce this four weeks before the 2018 election? The White House is effectively announcing the exit of its most popular Cabinet official — the extremely rare one who has strong approval among Republicans and Democrats — just before voters vote. Apart from perhaps Defense Secretary James Mattis, nobody is seen as being such a steadying influence in an unwieldy administration as Haley is.

The breaking news also comes as Trump and Republicans appeared to be on the front foot when it comes to the aftermath of Brett M. Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court confirmation. Republican enthusiasm is up, and a poll late Monday even suggested that independents viewed Democrats’ actions surrounding Kavanaugh more dimly than Republicans'. The GOP had a clear interest in keeping things focused on Kavanaugh, and yet the White House inserted this the morning after Kavanaugh’s ceremonial swearing-in.

Haley’s is also the first major administration exit since that anonymous New York Times op-ed in which a still-unknown “senior administration official” talked about how officials were working to check Trump’s impulses and even undermine him in certain ways. Haley’s name quickly rose to the top when it came to potential authors of the op-ed — given her well-established independence within the administration — but she issued perhaps the strongest rebuke of the author in an op-ed of her own.

The timing is also odd given a headline that popped up just a day before the announcement. A Washington watchdog group, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), called for an investigation into her use of private travel on the government’s dime. We don’t know whether there is anything untoward going on, but resigning so shortly after such a headline drops wouldn’t seem to be optimal — especially given that similar ethics allegations took down Cabinet officials such as Tom Price and Scott Pruitt.

Update: Haley’s resignation letter is dated Oct. 3, which would put it before the above allegations became public. The White House hasn’t always been totally accuratewith its dates, it bears noting, but that date does coincide with when Haley met with Trump in-person. It was also a day after Trump mocked Christine Blasey Ford at a rally, though there’s no indication this had anything to do with Haley’s departure.

Rep. Mark Sanford (R-S.C.) raised that story and other ideas with MSNBC shortly after Haley’s resignation. Sanford, a fellow former South Carolina governor who has been allies with Haley in the past but is now an administration critic, said of the story: “Something doesn’t smell right. Something’s weird.”

Sanford’s speculation could just be Sanford being Sanford — he’s one of the most most unique politicians in the country — but it’s not unreasonable to wonder what’s going on. So much is unknown. About the only reason for the timing we can rule out at this point is that this is about 2020. Haley in her availability with Trump said she won’t run against him and will instead campaign for him. She also offered glowing praise for Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner, calling the latter a “hidden genius.”

But if there was a simple, good reason for this departure being announced now, we don’t know it yet.

http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/polit...g-of-nikki-haley’s-exit/ar-BBOa80S?ocid=ientp
 

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Trump says Ivanka would be 'incredible' as U.N. ambassador but he would be accuses of 'nepotism' if he chose her after Nikki Haley's dramatic announcement she is quitting

  • Nikki Haley praised Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump during the Oval Office announcement she will leave her U.N. ambassador job at the end of the year
  • Speculation has started Ivanka Trump could be named to the position
  • Ivanka was also mentioned as possible Haley replacement last year in a Cabinet-shifting scenario that ultimately did not come to pass
  • President Trump said he would name a replacement by the end of the month
  • The job of ambassador to the U.N. requires Senate confirmation
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/ar...ared-Ivanka-amid-talk-Ivanka-replace-her.html
 

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Trump says Ivanka would be 'incredible' as U.N. ambassador but he would be accuses of 'nepotism' if he chose her after Nikki Haley's dramatic announcement she is quitting

  • Nikki Haley praised Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump during the Oval Office announcement she will leave her U.N. ambassador job at the end of the year
  • Speculation has started Ivanka Trump could be named to the position
  • Ivanka was also mentioned as possible Haley replacement last year in a Cabinet-shifting scenario that ultimately did not come to pass
  • President Trump said he would name a replacement by the end of the month
  • The job of ambassador to the U.N. requires Senate confirmation
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/ar...ared-Ivanka-amid-talk-Ivanka-replace-her.html
Trolling he is.
 

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Analysis: ‘Something doesn’t smell right’: The curious timing of Nikki Haley’s exit

Washington Post
Aaron Blake
1 hr ago

This post has been updated.

Nikki Haley is resigning as U.S. ambassador to the United Nations. And the timing is raising eyebrows.

President Trump and Haley held a quickly arranged media availability Tuesday morning in the White House, shortly after Axios’s Jonathan Swan broke the news of her impending exit. Haley said her resignation was simply about needing a break after six years as South Carolina governor and two at the United Nations, and Trump said Haley even previewed a desire to leave as long as six months ago.

The two were obviously eager to downplay the idea that this was hasty. But if it wasn’t, that might make the timing even odder.

If this was long planned, it was apparently one of the best-kept secrets in a very leaky White House. The news reportedly blindsided those in the foreign policy establishment, the White House and even members of Haley’s staff.

Haley’s exit is due at the end of the year, which means she’ll be around for as much as 12 more weeks. But she and the White House chose to announce this four weeks before the 2018 election? The White House is effectively announcing the exit of its most popular Cabinet official — the extremely rare one who has strong approval among Republicans and Democrats — just before voters vote. Apart from perhaps Defense Secretary James Mattis, nobody is seen as being such a steadying influence in an unwieldy administration as Haley is.

The breaking news also comes as Trump and Republicans appeared to be on the front foot when it comes to the aftermath of Brett M. Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court confirmation. Republican enthusiasm is up, and a poll late Monday even suggested that independents viewed Democrats’ actions surrounding Kavanaugh more dimly than Republicans'. The GOP had a clear interest in keeping things focused on Kavanaugh, and yet the White House inserted this the morning after Kavanaugh’s ceremonial swearing-in.

Haley’s is also the first major administration exit since that anonymous New York Times op-ed in which a still-unknown “senior administration official” talked about how officials were working to check Trump’s impulses and even undermine him in certain ways. Haley’s name quickly rose to the top when it came to potential authors of the op-ed — given her well-established independence within the administration — but she issued perhaps the strongest rebuke of the author in an op-ed of her own.

The timing is also odd given a headline that popped up just a day before the announcement. A Washington watchdog group, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), called for an investigation into her use of private travel on the government’s dime. We don’t know whether there is anything untoward going on, but resigning so shortly after such a headline drops wouldn’t seem to be optimal — especially given that similar ethics allegations took down Cabinet officials such as Tom Price and Scott Pruitt.

Update: Haley’s resignation letter is dated Oct. 3, which would put it before the above allegations became public. The White House hasn’t always been totally accuratewith its dates, it bears noting, but that date does coincide with when Haley met with Trump in-person. It was also a day after Trump mocked Christine Blasey Ford at a rally, though there’s no indication this had anything to do with Haley’s departure.

Rep. Mark Sanford (R-S.C.) raised that story and other ideas with MSNBC shortly after Haley’s resignation. Sanford, a fellow former South Carolina governor who has been allies with Haley in the past but is now an administration critic, said of the story: “Something doesn’t smell right. Something’s weird.”

Sanford’s speculation could just be Sanford being Sanford — he’s one of the most most unique politicians in the country — but it’s not unreasonable to wonder what’s going on. So much is unknown. About the only reason for the timing we can rule out at this point is that this is about 2020. Haley in her availability with Trump said she won’t run against him and will instead campaign for him. She also offered glowing praise for Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner, calling the latter a “hidden genius.”

But if there was a simple, good reason for this departure being announced now, we don’t know it yet.

http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/analysis-‘something-doesn’t-smell-right’-the-curious-timing-of-nikki-haley’s-exit/ar-BBOa80S?ocid=ientp
Good Lord what apple polishing! I couldn't finish reading that.


.
 

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Final Thoughts on Nikki Haley…
Posted on October 9, 2018by sundance

In the grand scheme of things, the move of U.N. Secretary Nikki Haley to resign is a typical move of a professional politician on the establishment side of the GOPe political continuum.



Ms. Haley comes from the political house of Bush; hence the original Rubio support in 2016 etc. She is a political animal from the establishment wing.
Within the traditional political class the customary approach to a White House run is to gain about five years of wealth in advance of a presidential run. Haley would be following a wealth process for a 2024 presidential run.

During this wealth accumulation period the cocktail party circuit (the billionaire crowd) will front-load wealth, purchase homes and all expenses etc, for the future candidate. This ‘Five Year Plan‘ was the same historic approach done for Ronald Reagan.

With a candidate in the private sector, the professional donor-class make investments in the candidate while it is legal to do so. The investments are made in anticipation of future influence. This is simply how money influences politics.

With the “Me Too” movement in high political value, the currency of Nikki Haley, as an investment candidate, is at the apex. Haley checks the right boxes; she is making a predictable move to capitalize on that process, politics and timeliness.

The U.N., as an institution, is also in alignment with the high-brow Prescott Bush clan. Ms. Nikki Haley is regarded by this clan as a very valuable commodity. If they can’t get Jeb, or another Bush (ie. Rubio) over the finish line, they will be much better positioned with investments in Nikki Haley.



It goes without saying the U.N. is not MAGA. In many ways the interests of the U.N. run counter to the more nationalistic MAGA movement. Hence, it was smart for President Trump to put a non-MAGA ambassador into the U.N. while simultaneously, and smartly, using the position to keep the globalists from attacking MAGA policy.

It was a strategic move when it was done and the benefits have been visible.
Moving forward, despite the success of President Trump in taking over the Republican party, the political apparatus still has factions (ie. Never Trump etc.). Those GOPe types will back Nikki Haley in 2024 as they did Jeb in 2016. The outlooks are same/same. This is all entirely predictable.

Due to the increasing success of the MAGA or Trump Republican apparatus, Haley will need to carefully position herself as a stealth Decepticon and not upset the vulgarian hordes; ie. the new republican party base voter. As a smart and tactical politician Haley will invest heavily in the optics of supporting the MAGA movement; and embrace President Trump to avoid any conflict.

Much like the primary of 2016 (w/ Jeb), the primary race of 2024 will determine if Haley can con enough people into not seeing her elitist Decepticon position.

The Bush clan and professional political cocktail circuit was rebuked in 2016, so we can anticipate their strategy in 2024 will be with those strategic lessons at the forefront.

/End.


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Trump says he would consider former adviser Dina Powell for UN

Reuters
2 hrs ago


U.S. President Donald Trump on Tuesday said he would consider selecting Goldman Sachs executive and former White House adviser Dina Powell as the next U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, and he shot down speculation he would tap his daughter Ivanka for the post.

Trump spoke to reporters at the White House before departing for an event in Iowa, hours after announcing that current U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley would step down at the end of the year. He said Haley would help him make the final pick for her replacement.

Powell served in the first year of the Trump administration as the Deputy National Security Adviser for strategy, and was a key player in diplomatic efforts in the Middle East. She returned to Goldman Sachs, where she worked for more than a decade, earlier this year. She also was a high-ranking official in the State Department of the previous Republican president, George W. Bush, according to the Harvard Kennedy School, where she is a senior fellow.

Speculation that Ivanka Trump would take on the post mounted after Haley praised her and her husband, Jared Kushner, in discussing her resignation in the Oval Office on Tuesday morning. But Trump told reporters at the White House before embarking on Marine One that, while Ivanka would be incredible in the role, he would face accusations of nepotism if he selected her.

(Reporting by Jeff Mason; Writing by Lisa Lambert; Editing by Tim Ahmann and Jonathan Oatis)

http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/polit...iser-dina-powell-for-un/ar-BBOabxs?ocid=ientp
 

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'It will not be me': Ivanka rules out UN Ambassador role after Nikki Haley's shock resignation, as Dina Powell is considered for the top White House post

  • President Donald Trump said his daughter Ivanka Trump would make a 'incredible' Ambassador to the United Nations
  • But he added he didn't want to be accused of 'nepotism' if he appointed her
  • 'Ivanka would be dynamite and then I'd be accused of nepotism,' he said
  • Trump did say former national security adviser Dina Powell - who is a close friend of Ivanka Trump - is under consideration
  • Nikki Haley praised Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump during the Oval Office announcement she will leave her U.N. ambassador job at the end of the year
  • Speculation has started Ivanka Trump could be named to the position
  • 'I know that the President will nominate a formidable replacement for Ambassador Haley. That replacement will not be me,' the first daughter tweeted
  • The job of ambassador to the U.N. requires Senate confirmation
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/ar...ared-Ivanka-amid-talk-Ivanka-replace-her.html
 

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Haley’s Resignation Financially Motivated?
RT America


Published on Oct 9, 2018
US ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley will resign from her post. President Trump said she would serve for the remainder of the year and told reporters Haley’s replacement would be announced within the coming weeks. RT America’s Dan Cohen reports on her unique brand of diplomacy. For Analysis, RT America’s Scottie Nell Hughes is joined by radio host Charlie James and Ned Ryun, CEO of American Majority.
 

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In Haley, Trump Loses a Conventional GOP Foreign Policy Voice
VOA News


Published on Oct 10, 2018
A dramatic and unexpected resignation by the U-S- ambassador to the United Nations. Nikki Haley, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, announced Tuesday she is stepping down at the end of the year. It's the latest high-profile departure for the Trump administration. But it's not clear what effect, if any, Haley's departure will have on U.S. foreign policy, as VOA's Bill Gallo reports.
Originally published at - https://www.voanews.com/a/4607224.html
 

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Boy you can tell the left is grasping at straws now after their massive loss last weekend. UN ambassador is a worthless bullshit position on a worthless bullshit committee who's time is well past the expiration date. It's a good place to put a drunk or a backstabber where they can't do any harm.

State run media is making this out to be a devastating loss of a key cabinet position who's reverberations will be felt far and wide for years. She is a shit politician in a make-work shit position. She could be replaced by any fool off the street.

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Trump signals more Cabinet changes to come with General Mattis on the chopping block, calling his defense secretary 'sort of a Democrat'

  • President Donald Trump said his Defense Secretary James Mattis could be the next member of his Cabinet to leave
  • 'I think he's sort of a Democrat if you want to know the truth,' Trump said
  • He also told '60 Minutes' more 'other people will go for sure'
  • Trump has long expressed his frustration with Attorney General Jeff Sessions
  • Trump denied his White House is in chaos
  • 'It's wrong. It's so false. It's fake news,' he said
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/ar...anges-come-General-Mattis-chopping-block.html
 

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Mad Dog Mattis says Trump told him his top Pentagon job is '100 per cent' safe after president stunned the nation by saying on 60 Minutes that 'he might leave'

  • President said on '60 Minutes' that his defense secretary might be leaving and that he is 'kind of a Democrat'
  • But Sec. James Mattis told reporters in Vietnam that Trump told him he was '100 pe rcent' behind him
  • Asked what he made of Trump's comments, Mattis said: 'Nothing at all, I'm on his team'
  • The post of defense secretary is typically the least political in a president's Cabinet
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/ar...says-defense-chiefs-job-100-percent-safe.html
 

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"60 Minutes"
 

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McGahn, a Soldier for Trump and a Witness Against Him, Departs White House


NYT
By MICHAEL S. SCHMIDT and MAGGIE HABERMAN
1 hr ago


WASHINGTON — Donald F. McGahn II departed as White House counsel on Wednesday, ending a tumultuous 21-month tenure where he spearheaded some of President Trump’s most significant political accomplishments, including two appointments to the Supreme Court, but also became a chief witness against him in the special counsel investigation.

Mr. McGahn’s departure was confirmed by two people close to him. Mr. McGahn and the president sat for a farewell chat on Wednesday, one said. Mr. Trump said this week that he will install as Mr. McGahn’s replacement the longtime Washington lawyer Pat Cipollone, calling him “a very fine man, highly respected by a lot of people.”

As White House counsel, Mr. McGahn took on a handful of often-conflicting roles: counselor to the president; protector of top law enforcement officials, including the special counsel, Robert S. Mueller III; and witness in the investigation into whether Mr. Trump obstructed justice. He has told associates that he stopped Mr. Trump from firing Mr. Mueller and from forcing Attorney General Jeff Sessions to retake control of the Russia inquiry after he recused himself from oversight of it.

A longtime fixture in Republican legal circles, Mr. McGahn led White House efforts to slash government regulations and stack the federal courts with conservative judges. He shepherded the nominations of both of Mr. Trump’s Supreme Court choices, Neil M. Gorsuch and Brett M. Kavanaugh.

Mr. McGahn played a pivotal role in keeping Justice Kavanaugh’s nomination on track at one of its most precarious moments, encouraging the nominee to defiantly reject sexual assault allegations against him in a high-stakes hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee.

But Mr. McGahn had little tolerance for Mr. Trump’s often emotional responses to the legal cloud hanging over his administration, referring to the president as “King Kong” — out of Mr. Trump’s earshot — because of his explosive anger. Mr. McGahn often tried to stop the president from taking steps that Mr. McGahn viewed as legally or politically problematic, such as firing the special counsel. The president blamed Mr. McGahn for the deputy attorney general’s appointment of Mr. Mueller in May 2017, saying Mr. McGahn had not done enough to control the Justice Department.

Mr. McGahn may have also caused more damage for Mr. Trump than any other White House official in the special counsel investigation. Mr. McGahn has spent at least 30 hours with Mr. Mueller’s investigators, laying out how Mr. Trump tried to interfere with or quash the inquiry, including by trying to fire Mr. Mueller himself in the summer of 2017.

Mr. Trump also considered giving the job of White House counsel to Emmet T. Flood, the White House lawyer for the special counsel investigation whom he has grown to trust. Some White House officials told Mr. Flood, who wants to represent the president if impeachment proceedings begin in Congress, that he should have taken the job in order to maintain control over the special counsel investigation and possible impeachment. Mr. Flood ultimately did not take the job, according to people familiar with the discussions, and is expected to remain in his post.

Mr. McGahn had long planned to leave the White House this fall. But in August, shortly after the extent of his witness testimony was revealed by The New York Times, the president surprised Mr. McGahn by announcing on Twitter that he would be leaving as White House counsel after Justice Kavanaugh was confirmed.

Mr. McGahn, 50, graduated from Notre Dame and attended Widener University’s Commonwealth Law School in Pennsylvania before coming to Washington, where he worked in private practice specializing in election law and served on the Federal Election Commission for five years. He joined the Trump campaign in 2015, when Mr. Trump was a long-shot candidate.

Inside the White House, Mr. McGahn was often protected by the chief of staff, John F. Kelly, who created a buffer between Mr. McGahn and the president, according to the president’s advisers. Mr. McGahn also developed a particularly close relationship with the Senate majority leader, Mitch McConnell, whom he worked with closely on judicial nominations even after Mr. McConnell’s relationship with Mr. Trump frayed.

http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/polit...him-departs-white-house/ar-BBOwXda?ocid=ientp
 

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Nikki Haley told Trump she had 'no idea what the UN does' when he asked her to be US ambassador and then portrayed him as 'unpredictable' in negotiations with other countries

  • Haley addressed the Council for National Policy in Charlotte on October 4
  • Reporter infiltrated the private conservative conference to relay her remarks
  • Haley spoke five days before she announced her resignation as UN ambassador
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/ar...ration-secretive-conservative-conference.html
 

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Trump fears Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke broke anti-corruption rules over land deal with Haliburton chief who offered his family a brewery

  • Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke faces a Justice Department probe that his own agency sent to investigators, about a land deal in Montana involving Halliburton
  • President Trump is worried enough about it that he's asking aides to bring him information about how much trouble Zinke is in
  • Halliburton chairman David Lesar is developing a commercial and retail park in Zinke's hometown of Whitefish, Montana
  • The development group allegedly was prepared to offer Zinke and his wife a microbrewery as part of their building project
  • Lesar's group was seeking to put a parking lot on property owned by a foundation the Zinkes established to build a veterans' park
  • The other IG investigations involve a casino deal and the redrawing of the boundaries of the Grand Staircase Escalante National Monument in Utah

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/ar...og-refers-Zinke-probe-Justice-Department.html
 

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Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross May Be On His Way Out


by Tyler Durden
Fri, 11/09/2018 - 09:55


Just two days after President Trump ousted Attorney General Jeff Sessions, Politico is reporting that Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross might be the next cabinet official to leave the administration as part of Trump's widely expected cabinet reshuffle.

Trump has reportedly grown frustrated with Ross over reports of his unsavory and ruthless business practices as well as his perceived ineptitude in negotiating trade deals. The president has repeatedly humiliated Ross in front of other administration officials, and accused him of being "past his prime," according to Bob Woodward's book "Fear."



The most likely candidate to replace Ross at Commerce would be Linda McMahon, the Small Business Administration head and former CEO of WWE wrestling.

Ross's fate could hinge on whether Democrats follow through with threats to investigate his business practices and finances after a Forbes reporter published a scathing report earlier this year accusing Ross of ripping off investors and former business partners.

Speculation is growing about the fate of Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, about whom Trump has expressed private frustration. The 80-year-old billionaire has supported Trump’s controversial tariffs on trade partners, but may be asked to resign as Trump weighs post-midterm personnel changes.​

The leading candidate to replace Ross if that happens is now Small Business Administration chief Linda McMahon, according to two sources familiar with the discussions. McMahon has made clear she is interested in the position and would accept it if it is offered, according to a source familiar with the conversations.​

Whether Ross stays or goes will depend on the extent to which newly empowered Democrats in the House decide to probe the Commerce secretary’s finances and questions about his divestment of assets, a White House official said. If Democrats decide to press those issues, Ross could have a harder time staying.​

McMahon and her husband, Vince — the CEO of World Wrestling Entertainment — have known the Trumps for years and were early and active supporters of Trump’s presidential campaign. McMahon, who initially backed Christie’s 2016 White House bid, is credited in part with helping secure his support for Trump during the campaign.​

Inside the White House, McMahon is viewed as largely pro-free trade and less friendly to tariffs than Ross. So her takeover at Commerce, if it happens, might be seen as a shift away from economic policies that critics call protectionist. In an administration filled with big personalities and which has struggled to attract talent, she is appreciated for being low-key, competent, loyal — and easily confirmable by the Senate.​

Ross isn't the only scandal-plagued Trump cabinet official who might be on his way out; Politico reported last night that Ryan Zinke, the secretary of the interior, has reached out to Fox about possibly working as a conservative news commentator as ethics investigations into his use of taxpayer money. Zinke could be out within a week, and is expected to leave by the end of the year.

https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-11-09/commerce-secretary-wilbur-ross-may-be-his-way-out
 

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Trump 'will fire Kirstjen Nielsen because she's not tough enough on immigration' and it could happen THIS WEEK after less than a year in the role

  • President Donald Trump is reportedly planning to dismiss Kirstjen Nielsen
  • Homeland Security secretary could be fired in next few weeks
  • President reportedly wants someone tougher on immigration and the border
  • Chief of Staff John F. Kelly has been fighting to keep her
  • Nielsen allegedly has not been enjoying the job within the last few months
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/ar...stjen-Nielsen-shes-not-tough-immigration.html
 

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LET'S SEE....

Even the swamp requires the scum be scraped from the surface to see what's underneath (Ross) AND
those that get thrown into the swamp MUST, like anyone else, learn to sink or swim.(Nielsen)
 

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evryone trump hired was forced on him by the current pub power house, sorry to say im losing all hope for a swamp cleaning with the dems taking the house in Jan its game over for trump, he will spend the rest of his term fighting dem subpoenas and investigations, and that will doom his 2020 run
 

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Trump To Fire DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, "Discussing" Kelly Replacement: WSJ


by Tyler Durden
Tue, 11/13/2018 - 11:35

Update (11:30 am ET): That didn't take long.

Hours after the Washington Post published a report claiming that DHS Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen's job was in jeopardy, WSJ is reporting that Trump has decided to fire Nielsen, who succeeded John Kelly as head of DHS when he took the chief of staff job.

Apparently, all of Kelly's lobbying on her behalf failed to convince Trump to keep her on.

In a slightly more surprising development, Trump has also decided to remove John Bolton's top deputy, Mira Ricardel, over an unspecified dispute with the first lady.

  • TRUMP HAS DECIDED TO REMOVE HOMELAND SECURITY SECRETARY NIELSEN - WHITE HOUSE OFFICIALS: DJ
  • TRUMP HAS DECIDED TO REMOVE JOHN BOLTON'S TOP DEPUTY AT NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL OVER DISPUTE WITH FIRST LADY--SOURCES: DJ

Right now, the only thing stopping Trump from firing Nielsen is that he doesn't have a candidate lined up to replace her, per WSJ. Trump is also aware that his decision might lead John Kelly to quit. According to the report, Trump is discussing a replacement for Kelly, who has so far survived several rounds of rumors about his impending dismissal from the administration, only to hang on every time.

The president has decided to replace Ms. Nielsen, but hasn’t finalized the timing, White House officials said, in part because there isn’t an obvious candidate to replace her, officials said. Changes are also being contemplated for the National Security Council.

Trump has told aides that he is aware that forcing out Ms. Nielsen may result in Mr. Kelly quitting, administration officials said. Mr. Trump has told these aides that he is resigned to the possibility of Mr. Kelly leaving, and that he probably will replace Mr. Kelly with Nick Ayers, who is currently chief of staff to Vice President Mike Pence.​
* * *

Update: According to ABC News, White House Chief of Staff John Kelly is also at risk of termination, and may be replaced by Vice President Mike Pence's Chief of Staff Nick Ayers.

Meanwhile, Kelly's job is also uncertain and his fate has been in question for some time. Sources tell ABC News that within the last few weeks, the president has once again discussed Kelly’s fate with many of his top advisers; Kelly has continued to grow distant with the president, sources said. -ABC
This summer ABC reported that Kelly had agreed to remain chief of staff through 2020, however added that "Trump has expressed significant interest in Ayers with sources describing the 36-year-old as the leading candidate to take over as Trump's chief of staff. Some sources close to the president describe Ayers taking Kelly’s place as a "done deal" while others caution nothing is certain until the president says so."

Ayers has reportedly met with Trump about the job according to multiple sources, while Trump and Ayers reportedly had an extended conversation in the White House the eve of last week's midterms.​

Ayers' role as the right-hand man to Pence over the past year has put him in close proximity during some of the key moments of the Trump presidency. Multiple sources tell ABC News Ayers has also grown close to the president's family, particularly Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner, in recent months.​

President Trump has also complained about Kelly's lack of political acumen and has praised Ayers for his detailed political strategy for Pence's midterm election efforts. -ABC

***

Jeff Sessions has already packed up his things and left the DOJ for the last time, and it's likely that Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross will be next to go given Trump's well-documented frustrations with Ross's job performance and the percolating scandals surrounding possible ethics violations.



And to the list of likely Trump administration post-midterm departures, we can now add Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen, whom Trump has reportedly decided to remove after months of explosive outbursts over what he has perceived as her "poor performance" on immigration - an issue that Trump sees (with some reason, as the midterms showed) as crucial to his political survival, according to the Washington Post.

The report surfaced after Trump canceled a planned trip with Nielsen to visit US troops at the border in South Texas earlier this week. Trump reportedly told aides over the weekend that he wants Nielsen out ASAP, though the secretary is desperately trying to hang on until Dec. 6, which would mark her one-year anniversary in the job. Trump, who has complained about Nielsen for months, is looking for a replacement who will do a better job of implementing his immigration agenda.

Notably, a DHS spokesman refused to confirm or deny the report.

DHS officials who work with Nielsen declined to address her potential departure Monday. "The Secretary is honored to lead the men and women of DHS and is committed to implementing the President’s security-focused agenda to protect Americans from all threats and will continue to do so,” spokesman Tyler Q. Houlton said in a statement.​

As early as May, reports surfaced suggesting that Nielsen had borne the brunt of President Trump's anger over a rebound in illegal border crossings (after crossings dropped to multiyear lows following Trump's 2016 election). That anger has only intensified by her resistance to Trump's rhetoric about the migrant caravans, as well as his order to send thousands of US troops to the border. Trump has also reportedly berated her during cabinet meetings, criticized her to other administration officials and tagged her as a "Bushie" due to her service in the Bush administration.

Trump became incensed last month when Nielsen tried to explain during the runup to the midterm vote why the president couldn't close the Southern border with Mexico or drastically limit immigration.

But despite her obvious reservations, Nielsen has stood up and defended controversial Trump Administration policies like the administration's "zero tolerance" policy for illegal aliens traveling with children. The border separations triggered widespread outrage toward the administration last spring, and Trump eventually caved and reversed the policy under pressure. However, before he did that, Nielsen stood up and delivered a convincing defense of the administration's measures.

At the peak of controversy over the Trump administration’s "zero tolerance" family-separation initiative, Nielsen nonetheless stood at the White House lectern and delivered a vigorous defense of the measures. The president loved her performance — especially when she said there was no administration policy on separations. Days later, under withering criticism, the president changed his mind and ordered an end to the separations.

But if Nielsen is swept out during Trump's second significant cabinet shakeup, all eyes will turn to Chief of Staff John Kelly, who has long been Nielsen's biggest champion. He has previously stuck his neck out to defend her to the president, and her dismissal will inevitably revive speculation that Kelly's name might also be on Trump's "naughty" list. As WaPo reported, though Kelly has tried his hardest to stop Trump from firing Nielsen, his future in the administration is also "shaky".

https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018...ecretary-and-john-kelly-ally-kirstjen-nielsen
 

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After clashes with first lady and others, Kelly may soon exit White House

NBC News
Carol E. Lee and Kristen Welker and Hallie Jackson and Courtney Kube
2 hrs ago

WASHINGTON — John Kelly, mired in conflicts with a widening array of officials from the National Security Council to the office of the first lady, may soon depart the Trump administration, according to seven people familiar with the discussions.

Nick Ayers, Vice President Mike Pence's chief of staff, is among those being considered for the job, three of the people said, though President Donald Trump has mused about other possible candidates.

Kelly's time as chief of staff for most of the past year has been clouded by controversy and disagreements with Trump and various West Wing staff. But questions about his future in the White House recently became more serious after his repeated clashes with national security adviser John Bolton and his deputy, Mira Ricardel.

Kelly has also gotten on the wrong side of first lady Melania Trump over staffing issues and travel requests. Some of the disputes with the East Wing have escalated to the president, the seven people familiar with the clashes said.

"There have been instances where the East Wing staff were not treated as equals to the male-dominated decision makers in Chief Kelly's office," one White House official said. "Promotions were denied then finally granted after months of requests," the official said.

Melania Trump raised concerns with her husband earlier this year, amid the height of the controversy over his alleged affair with porn actress Stormy Daniels, that Kelly had repeatedly denied her requests to promote some of her aides, two White House officials told NBC News.

The requests languished for months as Kelly insisted there weren't enough available positions for the first lady's aides to have senior titles, these people said. During this same period however, West Wing officials working for Kelly received promotions, the White House officials said.

Having learned of the dispute, the president was furious and told Kelly to give the first lady, who has a smaller East Wing staff than her recent predecessors, what she wanted, these people said. "I don't need this s---," Trump told Kelly, according to one person familiar with the conversation.

Kelly wouldn't be the first chief-of-staff to upset a first lady but history has shown that such disputes are tough to overcome.

Nancy Reagan was at odds with President Ronald Reagan's chief of staff, Donald Regan, which ultimately helped orchestrate his departure. And Hillary Clinton was at odds with President Bill Clinton's chief of staff over her large role in policy decisions.

Trump was especially annoyed, according to people familiar with his thinking, that he had to get involved in disputes involving his wife. His message to Kelly, according to one of them, repeatedly has been: "Deal with it."

The promotions of the first lady's communications director, Stephanie Grisham, and White House social secretary, Rickie Niceta, from special assistants to the president to deputy assistants to the president were ultimately cleared and announced in June.

Kelly has also sparred with the East Wing over travel arrangements for the first lady's staff, people familiar with the issue said. He often wouldn't reserve space for Melania Trump's two aides on Air Force One or on helicopters. They would find themselves without hotel rooms and not listed for motorcade movements. The omissions have caused last-minute logistical issues that the first lady viewed as a slight, these people said.

The White House declined to comment for this story.

"The East Wing is very focused on the First Lady's initiatives and works independently," Grisham said in a statement to NBC News. "However, we do collaborate on a variety of projects and work alongside many departments within the west wing. We have a very positive working relationship," she said.

The first lady also took issue with Kelly over the ousting in March of her director of operations, Justin Caporale, and of John McEntee, the president's personal aide who had become close with the Trump family since working for him during the 2016 campaign, people familiar with the matter said.

The first lady liked and trusted both of them, according to current and former White House officials, and viewed forcing them out "as personal affronts."

Some people close to the president believe Kelly's handling of the East Wing at times is a significant threat to him maintaining his job.

"There's one problem John Kelly has that'll do him in, and that's the first lady," one of them said.

A White House official said the first lady has not pushed for his departure, noting that she likes Kelly personally and gets along with him. But tensions with her office, on top of his intensifying power struggle with Bolton, have reignited speculation that Trump will replace him before the end of the year.

Last month, Kelly got into a heated argument with Bolton on immigration, ultimately storming out of the White House on Oct. 18, NBC News reported last month after learning that Bolton had criticized Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen as doing a terrible job on border security, an issue of top concern to the president.

Nielsen is a close Kelly confidante, and Kelly viewed Bolton's move as the latest example of the national security adviser circumventing his authority as chief of staff. Trump has been unhappy with Nielsen for months and she has not denied reports that the president has yelled at her in private settings. The Washington Post reported Tuesday that she may also be asked to depart the administration soon.

Kelly and Bolton also have clashed over Ricardel, the deputy national security adviser, four people familiar with the issue said. Bolton recently learned that Kelly has quietly mounted an effort to oust Ricardel, these people said, and was furious.

Ricardel was among Bolton's first hires when he became national security adviser in March. She previously worked for him during the administration of former president George W. Bush.

But at the NSC, Ricardel has gotten into several disputes with the East Wing, also over the first lady's trip to Africa in October. One White House official said that in that instance, Kelly intervened on behalf of the East Wing to smooth over the issues.

Some current and former White House officials and other people close to the president said it's the accumulation of incidents in recent months, on top of Kelly's tensions with first daughter Ivanka Trump and son-in-law Jared Kushner, that has led to a desire by the president to seek out a new chief of staff.

Kelly is Trump's second chief of staff, having replaced Reince Priebus just seven months into the presidency. Kelly left his position as Secretary for Homeland Security in August 2017 and joined the White House to bring structure to a freewheeling West Wing. He curtailed access to the president and he cut back on the number of staff allowed in meetings. The efforts quickly won him enemies among the president's confidants.


A retired Marine general, Kelly maintained his job despite a steady flow of reports that he's lost the confidence of much of the White House staff and has disparaged the president behind his back, NBC has reported.

As conflicts have arisen, Trump has for months mused on and off about possible replacements for Kelly and vented his frustrations with his handling of the job. The president also arranged for some of his new hires this past spring, including Bolton, to report directly to him rather than his chief of staff.

The White House has tried to quell speculation about Kelly's exit, even issuing a statement in July that he would remain in the job through 2020. But few expressed confidence that would be the case.

Ayers, who has worked to develop a relationship with Trump as the vice president's chief of staff, is not the only candidate under consideration in what the three people familiar with the outreach describe as active discussions in the White House about replacing Kelly, possibly by the end of the year.

The vice president's office had no comment on the possibility of the appointment. One White House official, speaking on the condition of anonymity said "personnel decisions don't mean anything until formally announced by the" president. "Regardless, Nick and those close to him have never lobbied for this."

Melania Trump has kept a low profile as first lady and has surrounded herself with a smaller group of aides compared to her predecessors. In a rare, wide-ranging interview with ABC News during her Africa trip, she signaled, however, that she doesn't hold back in private about her views on her husband's aides.

There currently are members of her husband's staff she does not trust, she said, which makes it "harder to govern."

"You always need to watch your back," she said.

http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/polit...y-soon-exit-white-house/ar-BBPF94x?ocid=ientp
 

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Trump considers ousting top aide who feuded with Melania

Reuters
By Mark Hosenball, Steve Holland and Roberta Rampton
31 mins ago


WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Donald Trump is moving to replace his deputy national security adviser after she feuded with first lady Melania Trump, two sources familiar with the matter said, with a spokeswoman for the first lady leaving no doubt about where she stood on the matter.

The first lady complained to the president that she was unhappy with how she was being treated by Mira Ricardel, a former Boeing Co executive who worked on the Trump presidential campaign and was picked by National Security Adviser John Bolton to be his deputy earlier this year, two sources told Reuters.

Asked about the reports, Melania Trump's spokeswoman Stephanie Grisham issued a extraordinarily frank statement.

"It is the position of the Office of the First Lady that she no longer deserves the honor of serving in this White House," Grisham said.

Sources said that Melania Trump explicitly asked the president to oust Ricardel after their dealings over the Africa trip "didn't go well." The other source said that Melania Trump felt that Ricardel tried to short-change the first lady in terms of U.S. government resources allocated to support her Africa tour.

The sources did not elaborate on the clash over resources.

The White House and the National Security Council (NSC) did not respond to requests for comment.

Ricardel could not be reached for comment. She had a prominent place standing to Trump's right on Tuesday at a White House ceremony in the Roosevelt Room marking Diwali, the Hindu festival of lights.

A source familiar with Ricardel's White House performance said Ricardel also ran afoul of much of the NSC staff and "sort of alienated everyone" except for Bolton, the veteran conservative foreign policy expert who has been her immediate superior.

Bolton is currently traveling in Asia with Vice President Mike Pence.

One of the sources familiar with the White House intrigue said the tensions began building to a crisis point about a month ago and serious, but apparently unsuccessful, efforts were made to defuse the dispute.

Ricardel was also believed to have had a dislike of Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, current and former officials have told Reuters.

(Reporting By Mark Hosenball and Steve Holland in Washington; Editing by Mary Milliken, Cynthia Osterman and David Gregorio)

http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/polit...who-feuded-with-melania/ar-BBPFLxz?ocid=ientp
 

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Staff anger spills over at White House


Politico
By Nancy Cook and Christopher Cadelago
46 mins ago



Bottled-up hostility in President Donald Trump’s administration flowed to the surface Tuesday, in a remarkable 12-hour period following an awkward midterm détente and tense presidential trip to Paris that he’s still seething over.

“It’s like an episode of ‘Maury,’” one former Trump aide observed to POLITICO as the spectacle unfolded. “The only thing that’s missing is a paternity test.”

At the White House, Trump appeared poised to dismiss Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, a source of personal frustration for months over what he views as weak leadership on border security and other enforcement policies he’s sought to implement.

The fresh round of backbiting and post-midterm turnover could also sweep out Trump’s chief of staff John Kelly, a close Nielsen ally, and see him replaced with Vice President Mike Pence’s chief of staff, Nick Ayers, who is re-emerging as a leading candidate, according to several White House officials and others close to the presidential orbit.

On Tuesday, the West Wing staff morass that had long been building, but that the president personally subordinated to put up a unified front for the midterms, spilled over to the East Wing, with first lady Melania Trump openly calling for the ouster of one of the top officials on the National Security Council — a rare public rebuke.

Her office had said in its statement that Mira Ricardel, the deputy to national security adviser John Bolton, did not belong in the White House anymore. While it didn’t elaborate, The Wall Street Journal reported that the president had decided to fire Ricardel at the first lady’s urging after clashes regarding her recent solo trip to Africa.

And earlier in the day, Trump’s chief economic adviser, Larry Kudlow, lashed out at White House trade adviser Peter Navarro after Navarro, a trade protectionist, took aim at Wall Street and corporate influencers pushing a less aggressive stance against China. Navarro did Trump a “great disservice,” Kudlow told CNBC.

“Peter very badly misspoke,” he added. “He was freelancing.”

White House aides and advisers have long anticipated an internal staff reckoning once the uneasy truce broke and the dust settled after the elections. But some conceded that the drumbeat of exits, the threat of subpoenas from the Russia probe and anticipated investigations by a newly empowered Democratic House — along with the raft of negative media attention in recent days — were taking a heavy toll on not only the president, but also on their own thinning ranks.

Trump himself did not tip his hand on any of the higher-ranking staff moves. But at a diya-lighting ceremony in the White House commemorating the Hindu festival Diwali, he announced the nomination of Neomi Rao, an administrator with the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, to fill the vacancy left in the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals by Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s move to the Supreme Court.

In private and on Twitter, Trump succumbed to darker forces, fixating on the media as late midterm returns continued to tilt in favor of Democrats, bolstering their House majority and making what seemed on Election Night like a history-defying achievement for the president and Senate Republicans a decidedly routine showing.

Trump has kept a light public schedule while stewing over unflattering domestic and international headlines, all amid a First Amendment-focused lawsuit that CNN filed against the president and top administration officials on Tuesday demanding that its correspondent Jim Acosta’s access to the White House be restored.

This internal upheaval came on the heels of Trump’s trip to Paris, where European leaders distanced themselves from his rhetoric and President Emmanuel Macron of France implicitly rebuked Trump in front of 70 other world leaders during an Armistice Day ceremony by criticizing the very idea of nationalism.

Already dismissive of Trump, Parisians barely paid attention to the U.S. president during his visit except to mock him. Two French tabloids over the weekend ran cover photos of Trump along with the headlines: “Why Trump threatens us” and “Macron’s other front.”

The fallout from the Paris trip clearly remains on Trump’s mind, since he tweeted five times on Tuesday morning about Macron, trade with France and his own canceled trip to an American cemetery outside Paris because of overcast, rainy weather.

“The problem is that Emmanuel suffers from a very low Approval Rating in France, 26%, and an unemployment rate of almost 10%,” Trump wrote on Twitter. “He was just trying to get onto another subject. By the way, there is no country more Nationalist than France, very proud people-and rightfully so!........”

He blamed the Secret Service for the cancellation of the cemetery visit — contradicting what his press secretary told reporters over the weekend, that Trump himself did not want to cause a traffic jam.

But it was the staff machinations that consumed Trump’s orbit, where advisers noted that with a fast-moving and fickle president, few things are certain.

Ayers, 36 and with three young children, has weighed returning to the private sector in Georgia, where he’s held on to his house. There have also been discussions about moving him to Trump’s reelection campaign.

Nielsen’s pending exit, meantime, seemed as close to a done deal as could be described. One Republican close to the White House characterized her departure as “imminent” — within the next week or two — and indicated that once her firing or resignation was announced, she would leave the administration within hours or days, similar to the recent firing of Attorney General Jeff Sessions.

Nielsen has clashed with the administration’s hardline immigration hawks, including Stephen Miller and staffers throughout the Homeland Security and Justice departments. They have been critical of her inability to stem the ongoing flow of immigrants into the U.S., as well as her defense of the administration’s decision to separate migrant parents from children when she appeared at the podium during a press briefing.

“There is no love lost between Nielsen and other political appointees,” said Jessica Vaughan, director of policy studies at the Center for Immigration Studies, a think tank that has advocated for far stricter immigration laws. “She and some of her staff have been considered more of an obstacle than a help.”

Trump is considering Thomas Homan, former acting director of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, to succeed her, POLITICO reported, with other possible replacements being Kevin McAleenan, the commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection, and David Pekoske, administrator of the Transportation Security Administration. Another name in the mix is Maj. Gen. Vincent Coglianese, who runs the Marine Corps Installations Command.

Interpersonal conflicts have dogged Ricardel, the deputy national security adviser, since the days of the Trump transition, when she wanted the job of undersecretary for policy at the Defense Department, only to have Secretary Jim Mattis block her, a former transition official said.

Eventually, Ricardel gave up landing a job at the Pentagon and found a spot at the Department of Commerce, for which the Senate confirmed her. Then, when Bolton took over as national security adviser, he brought her over to the White House as his No. 2. Her potential departure will be a political boon to Mattis and his team, the transition official added.

“The Trump administration has been so consistently off the rails that days like today just blend into everything else,” another former White House official concluded. “That in and of itself may be the biggest indictment of all.”

Andrew Restuccia, Eliana Johnson, Ben Schreckinger, Gabby Orr, Daniel Lippman and Ted Hesson contributed to this report.

http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/staff-anger-spills-over-at-white-house/ar-BBPGfbK?ocid=ientp
 

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And earlier in the day, Trump’s chief economic adviser, Larry Kudlow, lashed out at White House trade adviser Peter Navarro after Navarro, a trade protectionist, took aim at Wall Street and corporate influencers pushing a less aggressive stance against China. Navarro did Trump a “great disservice,” Kudlow told CNBC.

Kudlow taking wall street’s side Navarro should ask him to leave.
 

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Ya got any more than just the MSM.com bullshit out there? I trust them to conduct fair and honest journalism about as far as I can throw a battleship!
 

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andial

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Ya got any more than just the MSM.com bullshit out there? I trust them to conduct fair and honest journalism about as far as I can throw a battleship!
Kudlow took a shit on Navarro his words do a search.
 

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Kellyanne Conway's husband gets serious about anti-Trumpism as he co-founds new group of conservative lawyers to defend 'truth' and 'rule of law'

  • George Conway formed a group of anti-Trump conservative lawyers this week
  • His wife is Kellyanne Conway, the president's senior counselor who also ran his 2016 presidential campaign
  • The new organization will create breathing room for right-wing lawyers who fear the career impact of publicly opposing a Republican White House
  • President Trump recently laughed off an op-ed in which George Conway claimed his appointment of an acting attorney general was unconstitutional
  • 'You mean Mr. Kellyanne Conway?' he asked DailyMail.com. 'He's just trying to get publicity for himself'
  • Ms. Conway said Sunday that the clash inside her household 'doesn't affect me or my job at all. I've never been doing better personally or professionally'
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/ar...ew-group-anti-Trump-conservative-lawyers.html
 

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A White House aide picked a fight with Melania Trump. The first lady won.

Washington Post
Anne Gearan, Josh Dawsey, Emily Heil
7 hrs ago


A transoceanic personnel crisis that engulfed the National Security Council this week is partly rooted in a bureaucratic dispute over the seating arrangements aboard first lady Melania Trump’s plane to Africa last month during her maiden solo trip abroad.

As the East Wing prepared the flight manifest for the marquee trip, deputy national security adviser Mira Ricardel became angry that seats on the first lady’s government jet were assigned to a larger-than-usual security entourage and a small press corps with none for Ricardel or another NSC staffer, according to current U.S. officials and others familiar with the trip and its aftermath.

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Policy experts from the NSC and State Department were advised to fly separately and to meet the first lady’s party on the ground, a practice the State Department had often used, but Ricardel objected strenuously, those people said. She threatened to revoke NSC resources associated with the trip, meaning no policy staff would advise the first lady during her visits to Ghana, Kenya, Malawi and Egypt.

Bad blood between Ricardel and Melania Trump and her staff continued for weeks after the trip, with the first lady privately arguing that the NSC’s No. 2 official was a corrosive influence in the White House and should be dismissed. But national security adviser John Bolton rebuffed the first lady and protected his deputy, prompting the first lady’s spokeswoman, Stephanie Grisham, to issue an extraordinary statement to reporters Tuesday effectively calling for Ricardel’s firing.

“It is the position of the Office of the first lady that she no longer deserves the honor of serving in this White House,” Grisham said of Ricardel in the statement.

After an uncomfortable day of limbo, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders announced Wednesday evening that Ricardel was leaving the White House.

“Mira Ricardel will continue to support the President as she departs the White House to transition to a new role within the Administration,” she said in a statement.

An NSC spokesman declined to elaborate.

The first lady’s decision to publicly advocate for the ouster of a senior member of her husband’s staff shows a new willingness on her part to weigh in on White House operations and marks a change from earlier in the Trump administration, when she repeatedly played down her role as an adviser to the president.

It also comes as the president is mulling personnel changes, including possibly ousting Chief of Staff John F. Kelly and firing Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen.

Anita McBride, who was chief of staff to first lady Laura Bush, says Melania Trump’s move was a dramatic show of power.

“If anyone had questions about her willingness to exert her influence, they got their answer,” she said.

Ricardel’s dismissal also serves as a rebuke of Bolton, known for his sharp elbows and ability to navigate internal tensions, who refused for weeks to fire his handpicked deputy and worked in the past day to protect her.

Soon after the first lady’s office issued its statement Tuesday, surprised senior White House aides walked to Ricardel’s office to see whether she was still there. She was, albeit confused.

Bolton, who was awakened in Asia in the middle of the night and told of the dust-up, was soon on the phone, telling Ricardel to remain at her post, three administration officials said.

The White House was trying to find a soft landing place for Ricardel, but agencies including the Commerce Department, where she worked in the first year of the Trump administration, are hesitant to take her on because of her reputation, two senior administration officials said.

The first lady’s statement came after months of tension in the White House over Ricardel’s abrasive interactions with staffers in both the East Wing and the West Wing, according to several current and former staffers.

Melania Trump and Ricardel have never met, according to people familiar with each of them. But the first lady viewed the conservative operative, who was among the most senior women in the West Wing, as a toxic influence in the White House, to the point that she spoke to Trump about Ricardel after the Africa trip and authorized others to spread the word that Ricardel had overstepped the mark, several people familiar with recent events said.

A senior White House official said the first lady believed Ricardel was spreading false rumors about her office, including a misleading story that aides had arranged a $10,000 hotel stay in Egypt. Other White House aides said Ricardel belittled underlings, shouted at professional staff and was the most disliked aide in the West Wing.

Last weekend, according to administration officials, the first lady’s office again asked Bolton to oust Ricardel. Others, including Kelly, have wanted her gone for months, administration officials said, with little success in overcoming Bolton’s objections.

Bolton declined again — and went to Asia.

While the first lady’s public statement came as a surprise to many, including in the White House, Paolo Zampolli, a longtime friend of the Trumps’, said the move isn’t out of character for the first lady. “Our first lady is very strong, and she has the right to choose who she’s working with,” he said.

In past administrations, first ladies exerted similar or greater influence, but always behind the scenes. The most famous modern example is Nancy Reagan’s engineering the ouster of chief of staff Donald T. Regan, who had made the dire mistake of hanging up on her. While Nancy Reagan’s fingerprints were all over the firing, there were no statements from her office to that effect.

“You never hang up on the first lady. She can be your strongest ally. She can help you more than anybody realizes,” said Kenneth Duberstein, who fared better as chief of staff to Reagan.

Martha Washington, historian Carl Sferrazza Anthony noted, once wrote that she felt like a “state prisoner” because of protocol rules and a schedule set in part by her husband’s chief adviser, Tobias Lear. And there was no love lost between Mary Lincoln and Abraham Lincoln’s chief counselors, John Hay and John Nicolay, who referred to her as “the hellcat” behind her back.

Pat Nixon, Anthony says, chafed at top White House aides H.R. “Bob” Haldeman and John Erlichman for perceived offenses that included not giving her enough notice before travel and for not taking her ambitious agenda seriously, Anthony said.

“It goes back so far that what we’re really talking about is human nature and the problem of the boss’s wife,” he said.

Melania Trump has taken on a more public role recently, launching her anti-bullying campaign earlier this year and traveling to Africa in October.

She has made symbolic gestures that suggest she feels free to make her views plain and to disagree with her husband.

In a rare sit-down interview with ABC News last month, the first lady was asked whether it was true that she had more control over her notoriously volatile husband than anyone else. “Oh, I wish,” she said. “I give him my honest advice and honest opinions. And then he does what he wants to do.”

The first lady has privately complained about other current and former White House officials to her husband — Stephen K. Bannon, chief among them — but has never before issued such a public statement.

The East Wing often does not clear its statements with the White House. Senior White House aides, including Kelly and Bolton, were not aware that the statement was coming before it was issued Tuesday. Press secretary Sarah Sanders had not seen the final statement, a senior administration official said.

Even Kelly, who wanted Ricardel gone, told others he thought that the situation was handled poorly and that the White House looked bad.

The controversy has added to the turmoil surrounding the White House after last week’s midterm elections, in which Republicans lost control of the House and maintained a slim Senate majority. Last week, Trump fired Attorney General Jeff Sessions before heading to Paris over the weekend for the commemoration of the end of World War I, a period during which he struck out at French President Emmanuel Macron via Twitter and Macron indirectly criticized Trump’s embrace of “nationalism.”

“This shows it’s still a broken and dysfunctional White House. Maybe John Kelly has made a few trains run on time, but it’s clearly still broken,” said Chris Whipple, author of a 2017 book, “The Gatekeepers,” about White House chiefs of staff and West Wing operations.

anne.gearan@washpost.com

josh.dawsey@washpost.com

emily.heil@washpost.com

Philip Rucker contributed to this report.

http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/polit...rump-the-first-lady-won/ar-BBPITdR?ocid=ientp
 

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Trump names handbag designer to be envoy to South Africa


By Nicole Gaouette and Elizabeth Landers, CNN
7 hrs ago



President Donald Trump has nominated handbag designer Lana Marks to be the next US ambassador to South Africa.

Marks, a Florida resident and member of Trump's exclusive Mar-a-Lago resort, according to a source familiar with the club, was born and raised in South Africa, where she attended the University of the Witwatersrand and the Institute of Personnel Management in Johannesburg, the White House said in a statement.

Marks is photographed and quoted giving a warm testimonial on the website of Mar-a-Lago's official photographer, saying she had captured her daughter's wedding at the club "in a very special way."

Marks is known for luxury handbags in exotic animal skins, such as ostrich and alligator, with prices that can hover above $19,000. One of her more expensive creations, a $400,000 clutch, has been carried on the red carpet. The designer's website features photos of celebrities such as Jennifer Aniston carrying her goods and says her accessories have become a favorite among "royalty and entertainment style makers."

Ballet and tennis

Described by the Palm Beach Daily as "like Trump, a relentless self-promoter," Marks speaks Afrikaans and Xhosa, two of South Africa's languages, according to the White House.

Her website chronicles an upbringing that included studying at the Royal Academy of Ballet. The concept for starting an exotic leather handbag line came, the site says, when Marks couldn't find a bag to match the suit she planned to wear to a birthday celebration for Queen Elizabeth. According to her Instagram account she attempted to qualify for the French Open tennis tournament in 1978.

Marks' site also notes that she was appointed to the Women's Leadership Board at Harvard University's Kennedy School of government, which supports the Women and Public Policy Program. Both the board and the program focus on gender equality and improving lives around the world, the Harvard site says. The Harvard site notes that board members "engage philanthropically" with the policy program "through three annual giving tiers."

Board members provide a minimum annual gift of $10,000 per individual member, $20,000 per Leadership Circle member and $25,000 per corporation.

CNN's Kate Bennett contributed to this story.

http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world...e-envoy-to-south-africa/ar-BBPIGf4?ocid=ientp
 

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What Melania wants... : Trump caves to First Lady's public demand that he fire his deputy national security adviser Mira Ricardel after she clashed with her office over plane seats and accusations of leaking

  • First Lady Melania Trump took the extraordinary step of making a public call for the president to fire one of his national security advisors this week
  • She got her way on Wednesday when Mira Ricardel, deputy to John Bolton, was reassigned within the Trump administation
  • First ladies' office was out for blood after Ricardel argued with the East Wing about seating assignments on Melania's plane ride to Africa
  • She was a suspected leaker and had other clashes with Melania's staff
  • Senior officials pushed back to DailyMail.com and tried to save her job
  • But the White House announced that she was leaving early evening Wednesday
  • President Donald Trump is considering whether to dismiss Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen and WH Chief of Staff John Kelly, as well
  • President reportedly wants someone tougher on immigration and the border
  • Kelly has fought to keep her, but could be on the outside looking in himself
  • Retired marine general also has reportedly infuriated first lady Melania Trump because he slow-dragged promotions for her top aides
  • Trump's administration has been marked by its unusually high turnover of senior officials
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/ar...nd-fire-deputy-national-security-adviser.html
 

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Trump names handbag designer to be envoy to South Africa

By Nicole Gaouette and Elizabeth Landers, CNN
7 hrs ago



President Donald Trump has nominated handbag designer Lana Marks to be the next US ambassador to South Africa.

Marks, a Florida resident and member of Trump's exclusive Mar-a-Lago resort, according to a source familiar with the club, was born and raised in South Africa, where she attended the University of the Witwatersrand and the Institute of Personnel Management in Johannesburg, the White House said in a statement.

Marks is photographed and quoted giving a warm testimonial on the website of Mar-a-Lago's official photographer, saying she had captured her daughter's wedding at the club "in a very special way."

Marks is known for luxury handbags in exotic animal skins, such as ostrich and alligator, with prices that can hover above $19,000. One of her more expensive creations, a $400,000 clutch, has been carried on the red carpet. The designer's website features photos of celebrities such as Jennifer Aniston carrying her goods and says her accessories have become a favorite among "royalty and entertainment style makers."

Ballet and tennis

Described by the Palm Beach Daily as "like Trump, a relentless self-promoter," Marks speaks Afrikaans and Xhosa, two of South Africa's languages, according to the White House.

Her website chronicles an upbringing that included studying at the Royal Academy of Ballet. The concept for starting an exotic leather handbag line came, the site says, when Marks couldn't find a bag to match the suit she planned to wear to a birthday celebration for Queen Elizabeth. According to her Instagram account she attempted to qualify for the French Open tennis tournament in 1978.

Marks' site also notes that she was appointed to the Women's Leadership Board at Harvard University's Kennedy School of government, which supports the Women and Public Policy Program. Both the board and the program focus on gender equality and improving lives around the world, the Harvard site says. The Harvard site notes that board members "engage philanthropically" with the policy program "through three annual giving tiers."

Board members provide a minimum annual gift of $10,000 per individual member, $20,000 per Leadership Circle member and $25,000 per corporation.

CNN's Kate Bennett contributed to this story.

http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world...e-envoy-to-south-africa/ar-BBPIGf4?ocid=ientp
I have ZERO problem with this! Might as well nominate Bozo the Clown. SA has gone to total shit anyway!
 

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Political 'veteran' at age 36 eyed for Trump chief of staff

AP
1 hr ago


WASHINGTON — Nick Ayers could almost be confused for a college fraternity brother as he flashes a broad grin in a selfie taken with Mike Pence just moments after the Indiana governor was named Donald Trump's running mate.

In fact, the baby-faced campaign strategist in the white undershirt had a pivotal role in Trump's selection of Pence in 2016. And two years later, Ayers' bond with Pence is stronger than ever, as are his ties to the president.

A seasoned campaign veteran at age 36, Ayers is emerging as a leading contender to replace White House chief of staff John Kelly, whose departure has long been the subject of speculation.

If selected, Ayers would return a political mind to the role as Trump's presidency enters a new, more perilous phase in which he fights for re-election while fending off new oversight efforts from a Democratic House.

In any administration, the role of White House chief of staff is split between the responsibilities of supervising the White House and managing the man sitting in the Oval Office. Striking that balance in the turbulent times of Donald Trump has bedeviled both Kelly and his predecessor, Reince Priebus. If Ayers becomes the third person to tackle the job, it'll be his most significant challenge — and one friends say he's well-equipped to handle.

"He manages up as well as anyone I've ever seen," said Phil Cox, a former colleague at the Republican Governors Association who bought Ayers' political consulting business earlier this year.

Trump is said to have warmed to Ayers in part by watching the effectiveness of Pence's largely independent political operation. The vice president's chief of staff for the last 18 months, Ayers has earned the backing of Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner, the president's daughter and son-in-law and senior advisers, for taking on the new role, White House officials said.

Ayers would be the youngest chief of staff since 34-year-old Hamilton Jordan served under Jimmy Carter.

But before Ayers can have his crack at leading the White House staff, he first has to overcome opposition from some who may soon work for him.

On Air Force One on Sunday as Trump returned to the U.S. from a turbulent two-day trip to Paris, aides argued to the president that Ayers was the wrong person for the job, according to two people familiar with the matter. More than a half-dozen administration aides spoke about Ayers on condition of anonymity to discuss the sensitive personnel matter.

In some corners of the White House, Ayers is viewed skeptically over how he has led Pence's office, which operates largely independent of the Trump West Wing. Some in the White House blame Ayers for planting news stories critical of the administration or its strategies, while others have complaints about his efforts to circumvent the president's political operation. Some aides have taken to calling him "Tricky Nicky."

Ayers, a former aide to agriculture secretary and former Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue, is blamed by some in the White House for orchestrating the president's endorsement of the state's Secretary of State Brian Kemp for governor, a Perdue ally whom they believe wasn't the strongest candidate in the GOP primary. Republicans spent millions and deployed the president to defend the red state seat against a strong challenge from Democrat Stacey Abrams. Kemp holds a slight lead over Abrams and the Election Night results have yet to be certified.

Ayers didn't respond to a request for an interview. But allies said he is eager to take on the chief of staff job. He and Trump have been discussing the possibility of making the switch for months.

A Georgia native with a distinct southern twang, Ayers is the father of young triplets. His meteoric rise in GOP politics included a successful stint at the Republican Governors Association, time as campaign manager for Tim Pawlenty's failed White House bid and political consultant work for dozens of high profile Republicans across the country — including Pence.

"It didn't seem to matter what he gets involved in, he immediately becomes incredibly valuable," said Cox.

During the 2016 campaign, Ayers was seen as a Pence loyalist who also managed to have a good rapport with Trump's insular campaign team.

"The campaign trusted him," said Republican operative Brian Baker, president of the pro-Trump Future 45 Super PAC. "He was a rare guy who was able to work with both teams."

Before he joined the administration, Ayers was among the founders of the pro-Trump political group America First Policies, which works in concert with Pence's political operation.

Allies said that while Ayers isn't as deeply versed in foreign policy as some of his predecessors, he had developed experience advising Pence on global affairs. He has been a frequent participant in Trump's daily intelligence briefings, occasionally even when Pence wasn't present.

The timing of Kelly's expected departure isn't clear, though White House aides predict it will occur in tandem with the anticipated exit of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen in the coming months.

http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/polit...or-trump-chief-of-staff/ar-BBPNhAi?ocid=ientp
 

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'She’ll never be put in the UN': Trump INSULTS 'not too diplomatic' aide he fired at Melania's request and reveals John Kelly 'will move on', as he compares his White House to 'a well-oiled machine'

  • President Trump defended firing an aide his wife wanted gone and said he expects Chief of Staff John Kelly 'will move on'
  • But he insists his White House is a smooth-running machine
  • And he gave himself a high grade as president
  • 'I would give myself an A+, is that enough? Can I go higher than that?,' the president said on 'Fox News Sunday'
  • Trump fired Attorney General Jeff Sessions after the election and axed Deputy National Security Advisor Mira Ricardel a week later
  • White House Chief of Staff John Kelly could be next, replaced by VP Mike Pence's top aide, who is just 36 years old
  • Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, Kelly's protégé, is also reportedly expecting a pink slip
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/ar...e-Melania-wanted-gone-says-John-Kelly-on.html
 

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Apparently the French are interested in the US soap opera. Typical French big on appearances not so much on up to date info. About as functional as the Maginot-line was.
Screenshot_2018-11-21 Trump’s White House ‘a fine-tuned machine’ .jpg
 

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Mnuchin next on chopping block? Trump's grumblings about his Treasury secretary echo the path that led to exits of Tillerson and Sessions

  • Trump has expressed his displeasure with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin
  • He's said to be frustrated with Mnuchin's recommendation of Jerome Powell as chairman of the Federal Reserve
  • Trump is said to be worried the Fed raising interest rates will hurt the economy, which, thus could damage his 2020 reelection bid
  • The grumblings against Mnuchin follow a similar path as those that led to the dismissals of Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Attorney General Jeff Sessions
  • But aides go in and out of favor with Trump so Mnuchin, who has a personal relationship with Trump that goes back to their New York days, could be safe
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/ar...lock-Trumps-grumbling-Treasury-secretary.html
 

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Trump's slow-motion staff 'shakeup' stunts 2019 planning

The president has left top officials in a state of limbo and top jobs without permanent occupants, creating 'a sense of chaos.'


By ELIANA JOHNSON and BURGESS EVERETT
12/06/2018 05:07 AM EST



President Donald Trump is still looking for a new United Nations ambassador. He has no deputy national security adviser. His attorney general and Environmental Protection Agency administrator are serving in acting capacities, and his constant badmouthing of his chief of staff and secretary of Homeland Security has undermined their authority.

The president once openly signaled a plan to revamp his Cabinet and staff after the midterm elections, calling it a “very customary” act — and his aides acknowledged that big changes might be coming. But while he demanded the resignation of Attorney General Jeff Sessions the day after last month’s midterm elections, the once-breathless anticipation of his next personnel move has stretched into a long and awkward waiting game.

The result is an administration in a holding pattern. Trump has offered almost nothing in the way of a legislative vision for 2019 beyond approval of a new trade deal and vague references to infrastructure. His only clear priority is enforcing border security. The White House has even sent mixed signals about its desire to fight for a criminal justice reform bill that Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, played a key role in shaping.

While many presidents shake up their Cabinets after their first two years, Trump has turned what might have been a natural transition point into a monthslong ordeal that has left many advisers in limbo, inhibiting their ability to prepare for the next two years, according to senior Trump officials and experts on the presidency.

“I think Trump likes to make nominations into kind of a reality-TV show moment; he likes to keep people sitting on the edge of their seats. ‘Are you in or are you out?’ ‘Are you hired or fired?’” said presidential historian Douglas Brinkley. “But it creates a sense of chaos in the administration

Trump’s ability to restock senior administration posts faces several limitations, including the continued reluctance of many experienced Republicans to work for him. The hunt for a U.S. ambassador to the United Nations has been hamstrung by concerns about the qualifications of several candidates.

Making things more difficult is the intervention of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), who has warned the president against plucking any members from his caucus, which will hold a 53-47 majority. Asked by The Associated Press about the next attorney general this fall, McConnell was unequivocal: “It’s not going to come from our caucus, I can tell you that.”

McConnell’s stance is driven by what’s widely seen as a disastrous transition period in 2016 for Republicans, when Trump tapped GOP Sen. Jeff Sessions to be his attorney general and Montana GOP Rep. Ryan Zinke for Interior secretary. The GOP lost Sessions’ seat and failed to unseat Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.), whom many Republicans felt Zinke could have defeated. Trump also rebuffed McConnell’s advice that he find a Cabinet post for Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.), who went on to win reelection in a state in which many Republicans believe they could have won an open seat.

McConnell’s hands-off edict also puts off-limits candidates whom Trump has previously considered for Cabinet posts, including Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), a potential replacement for Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, and Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), a potential replacement for both Mattis and Sessions. Trump interviewed Cotton to be his Pentagon chief during the presidential transition before ultimately tapping Mattis for the job and has developed a close relationship with Graham over the past two years.

Despite pressure from Senate Republicans, the president shows no sense of urgency to name a permanent successor to Sessions, believing that the acting attorney general, Matthew Whitaker, can legally hold his post for several more months without facing a Senate vote. But an earlier replacement for the controversial Whitaker would soothe nerves in the GOP caucus.

“Sooner the better,” said Graham, who added that the Senate likely could not confirm a new attorney general before early next year.

The White House counsel’s office has in recent weeks had several conversations with Bill Barr, who served as attorney general under President George H.W. Bush. Barr had initially urged Trump's advisers to look at other candidates but is now at least open to the top law enforcement job if the administration cannot find another candidate, according to two sources with knowledge of the conversations.

But while Barr is widely respected among congressional Republicans, White House aides wonder whether the president would tap a relative stranger for a job he thinks should belong to a loyalist.

Sessions, for his part, defended Whitaker on Wednesday, though Whitaker was widely viewed as a disloyal aide openly lobbying for Sessions’ job.

“He was right in the middle of everything we were. So I’m supportive of what he does. And I think he’ll be very effective in what he does,” Sessions said as he traveled through the Senate subway after Bush’s funeral.

Another subplot with no clear resolution involves the shifting fortunes of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, whose dismissal many Trump officials believed was just a tweet away after the midterms. But Nielsen’s hawkish approach to the migrant caravan currently waylaid on the Mexican side of the Southern border has eased Trump’s concerns that she is an ineffective guardian of the southern border.

That’s not to say that Nielsen is now assumed to be in the clear. Asked whether her job is safe, Senate Homeland Security Chairman Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) answered: “How would I know?”

“The only knowledge I have is what I read,” Johnson added. “If I’ve got to confirm a new one, I’ll try to confirm a new one.”

Then there is White House chief of staff John Kelly. Rumors about Kelly’s once supposedly-imminent departure have abated of late. But uncertainty about his future has not. In the latest clue that Kelly’s days may be numbered, his deputy, Zachary Fuentes, has circulated his résumé to other Cabinet agencies, including the Department of Defense, according to three sources with knowledge of the situation.

One Republican who speaks frequently with the president would not predict how long Kelly will hang on — despite Kelly’s announcement to White House staff earlier this year that he’d agreed to stay on until 2020.

“The president more than most presidents seems to like to change advisers,” said Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.). “And it’s not at all unusual after two years to say ‘I did my service’ and move on.”

Still, he added he is “anxious” to see who will replace Whitaker.

“I’m anxious to see who the president’s going to nominate for attorney general,” Kennedy said. “We need to get a nominee.”

Daniel Lippman contributed to this report.

https://www.politico.com/story/2018...on-staff-shakeup-stunts-2019-planning-1046414