WASHINGTON – White House chief of staff John Kelly, making his first public appearance before journalists, said Thursday that he is neither frustrated in his job nor planning to depart. Taking the lectern in the White House briefing room, Kelly sought to dismiss reports that he has been frustrated working for President Donald Trump in what he characterized as “the hardest job I’ve ever had.”
“I’m not quitting today,” Kelly said. “I don’t believe — and I just talked to the president — I don’t think I’m being fired today. And I’m not so frustrated in this job that I’m thinking of leaving.”
A four-star Marine Corps general, Kelly took over as Trump’s chief of staff on July 28 and has enforced new order and discipline in a chaotic West Wing. Advisers have said there have been tensions as the two men adjust to working with each other, although Trump has repeatedly praised his aide’s performance — even predicting last weekend that Kelly would stay on the job for seven years.