Rumors have long swirled that the White House chief of staff has been looking to leave his job because he is unhappy about his inability to rein in President Donald Trump’s chaotic management style. In a move that might quiet such speculations, Kelly told White House staff on Monday that he plans to stay at his post for the rest of Trump’s first term.
Given the reported tensions between Trump and Kelly, the next few years will not be pleasant for the retired general. As Politico reported in June:
But Kelly’s status in the White House has changed in recent months, and he and the president are now seen as barely tolerating one another. According to four people close to Kelly, the former Marine general has largely yielded his role as the enforcer in the West Wing as his relationship with Trump has soured. While Kelly himself once believed he stood between Trump and chaos, he has told at least one person close to him that he may as well let the president do what he wants, even if it leads to impeachment — at least this chapter of American history would come to a close.
If, as this account indicates, Kelly thinks impeachment is a real possibility, then he might be departing the White House sooner than he expects.