WASHINGTON – President Donald Trump is happy with John Kelly as his chief of staff, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said, countering reports that tensions between the two could lead to his departure.
“Both the president and the chief of staff are very happy with his position that he currently holds, which is chief of staff to the president at the White House,” Sanders said in a briefing Tuesday.
The statement came a day after NBC cited unnamed officials saying that Kelly had made derisive comments about the president’s intelligence multiple times in recent months — including calling Trump an “idiot” — and that current and former officials expect the chief of staff to leave the White House by July.
Kelly issued a statement Monday denying the report, calling it “total BS.”
Several Trump allies outside the White House want Trump to oust Kelly and pitched the idea of nominating him to be secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs. Sanders on Tuesday said Kelly was not under consideration for the post.