White House: Gen. John Kelly Has ‘Full Authority’ over White House Staff

The Associated Press
AP Photo/Andrew Harnik

Gen. John Kelly, President Donald Trump’s new chief of staff, will have “full authority” to manage White House staff after taking office, according to the White House.

“Gen. Kelly has the full authority to operate within the White House, and all staff will report to him,” White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said during the daily press briefing.

Kelly signaled that he was in charge after firing White House communications director Anthony Scaramucci after only ten days on the job. But the White House appeared ready for a new start after the dramatic week that ended with the departure of White House chief of staff Reince Priebus.

“Gen. Kelly, I think, will bring new structure to the White House and discipline and strength,” Sanders said. “And we’re all really excited to work with him.”

In a Monday morning message on Twitter, Trump’s daughter, Ivanka Trump, signaled willingness to work with Kelly.

“Looking forward to serving alongside John Kelly as we work for the American people,” she wrote. “General Kelly is a true American hero.”

It appears Kelly also has the authority to manage Trump senior advisers Steve Bannon, Kellyanne Conway, and Jared Kushner, his son-in-law.

Among Kelly’s first tasks will be to choose a competent communications director for the White House, moving on from the Sean Spicer era and the Anthony Scaramucci show.

Spicer, who was scheduled to remain at the White House until Scaramucci was fully installed, is maintaining the current communications strategy while Sanders was promoted to press secretary.

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