Reince Priebus is out as White House chief of staff, after struggling for months to bring a sense of order to the West Wing or advance President Donald Trump’s legislative agenda. Trump announced in a tweet on Friday that Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly will replace him.
Two senior White House officials said Priebus had resigned on Thursday, but another senior West Wing aide said he was ousted from the position.
White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders declined to directly answer whether Priebus or Trump made the decision for Priebus to go. “We all serve at the pleasure of the president. The conversations about this started with the president and Reince about two weeks ago,” Sanders told reporters.
Priebus, in an interview on CNN Friday evening, tried to downplay his tensions with Trump, while saying it was his decision to resign. “This isn’t a situation with a bunch of ill-will feelings,” he said.
He added that the president accepted his resignation without drama. “I think the president wanted to go in a different direction. I support him in that,” Priebus said.
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