Two weeks ago, White House chief of staff John Kelly downgraded the top security clearance of Mr. Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner. Reportedly, the White House calligrapher even has a higher security clearance than Kushner now.
Kushner’s wife and first daughter Ivanka Trump has been complaining that Kelly is embarrassing her husband. Trump recently complained to a friend in a Vanity Fair report:
‘Why do you have to embarrass Jared like that?’
According to Newsweek:
‘Since Kelly downgraded Kushner’s clearance two weeks ago, barring him from classified information he presumably needs to tackle his foreign policy portfolio, Trump’s son-in-law “is looking at everything he can do that doesn’t require a clearance,” a former White House official told the magazine.’
Vanity Fair has reported that Trump is preparing to clean house soon, and the first two to go will be John Kelly and his National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster. Then, although it may be somewhat surprising, Jared and Ivanka are next on his list.
According to Vanity Fair:
‘Trump remains fiercely loyal to his family, but various distractions have eroded their efficacy within the administration. Both have been sidelined without top-secret security clearances by Kelly, and sources expect them to be leaving at some point in the near future. One scenario being discussed is that Kushner would return to New York to oversee Trump’s 2020 re-election campaign with his ally Brad Parscale, who was hand-selected by the Trump family. One Trump friend referred to it as a “soft landing.” Ivanka will likely stay on longer, perhaps through the summer, before decamping home to New York to enroll the children in a Manhattan private school. Both are presumed to remain in close contact with Trump, who often places significant value on the opinions expressed outside his administration, anyway.’
It was reported on Monday that Kelly has been “angered” by Jared and Ivanka, considers their actions “freelancing,” and blames them for changing Trump’s mind. The feeling is mutual as the president’s daughter and son-in-law have “already grown exasperated with Kelly,” and believe he is standing in the way of Trump’s success.
Back in January, Vanity Fair also reported that Trump called Kelly a “nut job” and that Ivanka was already looking for his replacement. Newsweek reported:
‘Ivanka Trump and Kushner apparently don’t have job security either.
‘The president apparently continues considering sending the couple back to New York. Kushner could oversee the president’s 2020 re-election campaign, while Ivanka Trump could stay until the summer and then depart to put their children in a private school in Manhattan, Vanity Fair states in its latest report.’
One of the major reasons Trump is planning to drain his staff and essentially reset is due to the fact that the 2018 midterm elections are nearing. Among those advising Trump are Corey Lewandowski and Dave Bossie. Vanity Fair reported:
‘They’ve counseled him to return to his 2016 campaign message. Another source said Trump has felt newfound validation after a CPAC straw poll last month showed him with a 93 percent approval rating.’
One Republican close to the White House said:
‘He felt the crowd desiring more. He knows there’s going to be a battle ahead.’
Twitter had plenty of opinions:
Featured image by Molly Riley/Pool via Bloomberg