President Donald Trump has grown increasingly frustrated with Hope Hicks and believes her romantic relationship with Rob Porter has clouded her judgement, sources claim.
The president is unhappy with the way the scandal surrounding Rob Porter – who resigned from the White House on Wednesday following accusations of domestic abuse – were handled, a person familiar with the conversations told CNN.
A source told the outlet Trump was not involved in discussions when Hicks and other members of staff drafted a statement defending Porter.
Trump reportedly believes she is letting her feelings for the former staff secretary cloud her judgement.
On Friday, Hicks found nothing to smile about as she made her way to the Oval Office to hear President Trump deliver prepared remarks about her newly unemployed boyfriend.
The 29-year-old Director of Communications for the White House conveyed her sense of gloom and doom in a black belted jacket and some $800 black-suede, thigh-high Stuart Weitzman boots.
Hicks was photographed at one point listening in while a smiling Kellyanne Conway spoke into her ear, but her somber expression remained fixed on her face.
And later, she could be seen placing her hand on John Kelly’s back as the forlorn Chief of Staff stood solo in a corner while watching President Trump speak.
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Hope Hicks found nothing to smile about on Friday morning as she made her way to the Oval Office
The White House communnications director conveyed her sense of doom and doom in a black belted jacket and some black-suede, thigh-high Stuart Weitzman boots alongside Kellyanne Conway
Hicks carried on with her day job after DailyMail.com reported allegations that her boyfriend Rob Porter abused two ex-wives
Hicks was photographed at one point listening in while a smiling Conway spoke into her ear
She could be seen placing her hand on John Kelly’s back as the forlorn Chief of Staff stood solo in a corner while watching President Trump speak
Kelly stood behind the reporters who entered the Oval office on Friday, and was so quiet that the pool did not realize he was even in attendance until after photos emerged of the event
Despite the claims of frustration, President Trump released a statement on Friday which said: ‘Hope is absolutely fantastic.
‘She was with the campaign from the beginning, and I could not ask for anything more. Hope is smart, very talented and respected by all.’
The President’s daughter, Ivanka, who hired Hicks several years ago to work for her company before she moved on to the Trump campaign, called her a ‘team player.
She added: ‘Most importantly, the President has deep respected for her, cares about her greatly, and listens to her. That’s not true of everyone. She’s earned that.’
This all comes at the close of what has been the worst week of Hicks and Kelly’s White House tenures.
President Trump defended Porter when he spoke to reporters in the Oval Office on Friday.
He said of the allegations: ‘I found out about it recently and I was surprised by it. But we certainly wish him well. It’s obviously a tough time for him.’
‘He did a very good job when he was in the White House and we hope he has a wonderful career, and hopefully he will have a great career ahead of him.’
‘It was very sad when we heard about it,’ Trump told reporters in the Oval Office, ‘and certainly he’s also very sad.
‘Now, he also, as you probably know, he says he’s innocent. And I think you have to remember that. He said very strongly yesterday that he’s innocent.
‘So you’ll have to talk to him about that. But we absolutely wish him well. He did a very good job when he was at the White House.’
There was no mention of the three women who have accused Porter of abuse, and as soon as President Trump finished he quickly dismissed all assembled members of the press pool.
It was less than 24 hours after DailyMail.com first broke the story about Porter’s alleged abuse.
Hicks and Conway watch as the president meets with Shane Bouvet in the Oval Office
Chief of Staff John Kelly has also been under fire and faces questions over whether he knew about Porter’s alleged violence
On Friday, DailyMail.com also reported that Kelly was told in October 2017 that Porter’s ex-wives were prepared to level devastating accusations of spousal abuse against him (Hicks above on Friday)
At points, Hicks looked downcast after he a week of allegations mounting against Porter and the Trump Administration
During the meeting, Trump did not reference any of the women Hick’s boyfriend is accused of abusing
Kellyanne mixed some high-low style with her vintage express pants and $700 Gucci horse-bit flats
President Donald Trump speaks during a meeting in the Oval Office of the White House on Friday February 9
Porter stepped down from his job following on-the-record claims to DailyMail.com from his ex-wives Colbie Holderness and Jennifer Willoughby about the abuse they say they suffered during their marriages to the former Trump aide.
Holderness claims Porter choked and punched her during their marriage, while Willoughby says he dragged her wet and naked out of the shower and was verbally abusive.
On Friday, DailyMail.com also reported that Kelly was told in October 2017 that Porter’s ex-wives were prepared to level devastating accusations of spousal abuse against him.
Porter’s then-girlfriend told Kelly personally that Porter had abused his two exes, according to a White House official.
White House counsel Don McGahn had known since early 2017 that Porter was at risk of being accused of being violent with the women.
But the news made it to Kelly when Porter’s girlfriend told him, after contacting a White House aide who reported to him.
Holderness claims Porter choked and punched her during their marriage, with one of these alleged incidents occurring while the two were vacationing in Italy (Hicks above on Friday)
Willoughby says Porter dragged her wet and naked out of the shower and was verbally abusive (Hicks and Conway above)
Porter’s ex-wife appeared on Today on Friday morning to discuss her four-year marriage to the disgraced White House secretary (Hicks and Conway on Friday)
Kelly was seen smiling and sharing a laugh with White House guests Donal Nouved and his son Shane, a former Trump volunteer who received a $10,000 check from President Trump
Porter’s ex-wife appeared on Today on Friday morning to discuss her four-year marriage to the disgraced White House secretary.
Jennifer Willoughby spoke in depth about the emotional, mental and on at least one occasion physical abuse she allegedly endured over the course of her relationship with Porter, who on Thursday spent his last day at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
And despite their rocky union, it seems that Porter and Willoughby do have a cordial relationship as he called his ex-twice earlier this week about a blog post she was preparing to share about her abuser.
On that call, Porter asked Willoughby to downplay the allegations of abuse she was making against him, a request that she did not honor before publishing her post, entitled Why I Stayed.
‘We were in contact even a couple of days ago as he was asking me to release a statement about my blog post,’ said Willoughby.
‘I went back and forth with him for an hour or so about what language I would be comfortable with and ultimately the language he asked I wasn’t comfortable with. He came out with that statement less than an hour later.’
When asked what he had asked her to say, Willoughby responded: ‘I don’t remember the exact wording, but it was something along the lines of the post does not accurately depict my marriage. There were other things associated with it. That doesn’t feel right. It does accurately depict my marriage.’
Hicks has yet to comment on the allegations being made about Porter and the two appear to still be dating at this time
Trump defended Porter in his first public comments on the scandal. He wished him well and said he has faced a ‘tough’ time
John Kelly, who has faced criticism for initially defending Porter earlier this week, was told in October that Porter (right) had a history of domestic violence. The pair are pictured in the Oval Office in September, 2017
Colbie Holderness, Porter’s first wife, (left) claims he repeatedly punched and choked her. His second wife Jennifer Willoughby has also claimed that Porter was abusive in their marriage
Members of the press pool quickly gathered in the Oval Office when Trump called the press pool inside
Willoughby also shed new light on the FBI background check into Porter while on Today, and revealed that her ex-husband knew she had said multiple damning statements.
‘I was part of the background check and I was completely honest with my experience of the marriage, telling them instances of abuse or police contact,’ stated Willoughby.
Host Savannah Guthrie then asked if she had been told in advance about the FBI interview or if her ex had tried to coach her in any way.
‘He let me know I was going to be contacted by the FBI once he was tapped for the White House,’ she said.
‘He was curious what I was going to say. He said, “what are you going to tell them?” And I told him, “I’m going to tell them the truth.”‘
At one point she even broke down in tears after being asked if she believed the allegations of abuse that are also being made by Porter’s first wife Colbie, who she only met a few months ago for the first time.
‘Of course I believe her,’ said Willhoughby.
She went on to say of living in an abusive relationship: ‘I mentioned the shame, but it’s also isolating. You don’t think that anyone would understand.
‘To meet Colbie and to hear her story and that we both had that experience was a release. It was a recognition. We were in this together.’
Kelly stood in the Oval Office on Friday as reporters crowded around Trump
A grandfather clock and Kelly silently line the wall inside the Oval office on Friday
President Trump beckons in reporters to discuss a few items on his agenda on Friday
Kelly was seen smiling prior to the arrival of the press in the Oval Office, but then quickly grew somber
President Donald Trump speaks with Don Bouvet in the Oval Office as the press looks on Friday
Hope is a big fan of the blazer dress and boot combo, opting for a knee-high look with lower heels two weeks ago for a date with Porter
Hope Hicks and Rob Porter are photographed spending the night together in Washington D.C. on January 27
Option two: Hicks also wears her navy blazer dress with the grey suede boots (left on January 26, right on February 2)