NBC and The New York Times reported on Saturday that Ayers was only willing to commit to an interim term through the spring, as his family is expected return to Georgia, citing people familiar with the discussions. Yet the president, eager to tamp down on the storyline of his White House in chaos, wants Ayers to stay on full time.
Rep. Mark Meadows, the chairman of the House Freedom Caucus, is now being considered at the retired general’s permanent replacement, Axios reported on Sunday, citing unnamed sources. A source familiar with the matter told CNBC the president is expected to make a decision by year’s end.
Kelly is expected to depart his role as White House Chief of Staff by the end of the year, Trump announced on Saturday, ending a tenure marked by tensions with his boss and confrontations with other key administration figures.
Kelly’s departure follows several months of controversy and turmoil, and comes at a time when the president’s agenda is imperiled by a midterm election in which Democrats recaptured the House of Representatives. The chief of staff vacancy is just the latest changing of the guard at the administration’s highest levels, which includes the U.S. Attorney General, United Nations ambassador and Joint Chiefs of Staff.