Retired Navy Vice Admiral (SEAL) Robert S. Harward has reportedly turned down an offer to be President Donald J. Trump’s National Security Advisor, replacing former General Mike Flynn, who recently resigned over allegations that he lied to Vice President Mike Pence regarding his contacts with Russian officials prior to the Trump inauguration.
According to CNN, Harward told a friend that he was reluctant to take the job because of the chaos in the White House. Harward went farther still, reportedly, and called the offer a “shit sandwich” — a phrase it is not hard to imagine him saying — referring to the dysfunction inside the West Wing.
According to the Financial Times, which appears to be the first to have reported the story earlier today, Harward “is conflicted between the call of duty and the obvious dysfunctionality” of the White House. This was according to a person with first-hand knowledge of the discussions between President Trump and Admiral Harward.
Financial Times also reported that there were concerns on Harward’s part that he would not be able to staff the National Security Council (NSC) positions to his own liking, and would, for example, have to retain Flynn’s choice of KT McFarland in her job as Deputy National Security Advisor.