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Trump tells Meadows no on White House chief of staff, wants him on Capitol Hill
By Robert Costa
Mark Meadows (R-N.C.), chairman of the conservative House Freedom
Caucus, greets reporters on Dec. 7. (J. Scott Applewhite/AP)
Robert Costa National political reporter covering the White House, Congress and campaigns
December 12 at 4:53 PM
Trump told Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.) on Wednesday that he would like
Meadows, one of his top congressional allies, to remain on Capitol Hill
instead of being considered for White House chief of staff, according to
White House officials.
The president’s request
shakes up the scramble to fill the top job in the West Wing, removing a
leading contender from the shortlist.
Mark Meadows is a great friend to President Trump and is doing an
incredible job in Congress. The President told him we need him in
Congress so he can continue the great work he is doing there,” White
House press secretary Sarah Sanders said in a statement to The
The Wall Street Journal first reported the president’s decision.
is scrambling to find a new chief of staff after ousting John F. Kelly
from the job over the weekend. His first choice for the job, Vice
President Pence’s chief of staff Nick Ayers, turned the president down
was intrigued by the idea of Meadows as chief of staff and told allies
he could help him fight against a Democratic House next year. He also
has told advisers he would be good on TV as a “warrior” for the Trump
Some White House officials questioned
whether Meadows had enough management experience for the post — and
whether he would curb some of the president’s sharpest impulses.
has met with a number of Trump allies in recent days to gauge what the
job would entail — and whether he should take it if offered, according
to a person familiar with the matter.
removal of Meadows from contention leaves a panoply of other potential
contenders, including acting attorney general Matt Whitaker, whom Trump
praised as he sat next to him Saturday at the Army-Navy football game in
Philadelphia Saturday, according to people familiar with the exchange.
claimed Tuesday that there were 10 or more contenders for the job,
althoug a number of high-profile possibilities have bowed out of
contention in recent days.