No One Wants to Be Trump’s Chief of Staff. Trump Claims Fake News.

“Many, over ten, are vying for and wanting the White House Chief of Staff position.”

Joyce N. Boghosian/ZUMA

For indispensable reporting on the coronavirus crisis, the election, and more, subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter.

As the White House scrambles to name a replacement for outgoing Chief of Staff John Kelly, President Donald Trump on Tuesday denied reports he is having difficulty filling the once-highly coveted position. He also, without evidence, accused the media of “purposely” misreporting the details of the search.

“Fake News has it purposely wrong,” he tweeted. “Why wouldn’t someone want one of the truly great and meaningful jobs in Washington.” He claimed that more than 10 candidates are currently vying for the gig, though it’s unclear who these job-seekers are.

The president’s struggle to fill the position is likely due in part to his own self-professed penchant for conflict among his staff, as well as his noted refusal to be constrained by more orderly processes. “I like conflict. I like having two people with different points of view,” Trump said back in March amid reports of heightened chaos in the West Wing. “I like watching it. I like seeing it.”

Trump’s Tuesday tweet comes days after his rumored top choice for the position, vice presidential chief of staff Nick Ayers, declined to take the job. The decision reportedly shocked the president and has since left the White House without a backup plan. “There was no Plan B, and whoever advised him that Nick Ayers was the right person and would accept the job did the president a grave disservice,” Steve Bannon told the Washington Post.

Meanwhile, the New York Times reports several of Trump’s aides are frustrated with Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner, who had been campaigning for months to replace Kelly—apparently without a fully formed plan to do so.

Dear Reader,

This feels like the most important fundraising drive since I've been CEO of Mother Jones, with staggeringly high stakes and so much uncertainty. In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," I try to unpack the reality we all face and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support Mother Jones’ nonprofit journalism: We need to raise $400,000 to help cover the vital reporting projects we have planned, and right now is no time to pull back.

Monika Bauerlein, CEO, Mother Jones

payment methods

Dear Reader,

This feels like the most important fundraising drive since I've been CEO of Mother Jones, with staggeringly high stakes and so much uncertainty. In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," I try to unpack the reality we all face and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support Mother Jones’ nonprofit journalism: We need to raise $400,000 to help cover the vital reporting projects we have planned, and right now is no time to pull back.

Monika Bauerlein, CEO, Mother Jones

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate