John Kelly is new chief of staff; Reince Priebus out

Scaramucci says senior leaders take leak crackdown seriously
Anthony Scaramucci's rant prompts questions over White House stability

30 July, 2017

Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly is the new White House chief of staff, President Donald Trump has announced via Twitter.

He first lost his deputy Katie Walsh, who departed the administration in March, and then press secretary Sean Spicer, who resigned just after Scaramucci came onboard.

Scaramucci appeared to suggest in a Twitter post late on Wednesday that Priebus may have had a hand in what Scaramucci described as a "leak" of his official financial disclosure documents to the USA news organization Politico.

An Obama administration appointee, Yates became a household name in January when she was sacked, ostensibly, for refusing to implement the first iteration of Trump's ban on travelers from a number of Muslim-majority countries.

Kelly has been a staunch supporter of Trump, during his election campaign days.He previously served as the former Commander of US Southern Command and was the commanding general of the Multi-National Force West in Iraq from February 2008 to February 2009.

The move likely signals a greater focus on law and order issues and will put further strain on relations between Trump and the Republican establishment.

Priebus served in the role seven months, having previously been head of the Republican National Committee.

Trump also thanked Priebus for his service.

"He's very passionate about the president and the president's agenda, and I think he may have let that get the best of him in that conversation".

Scaramucci later deleted that tweet and said he had only mentioned Priebus to show that all senior leaders are taking the leak crackdown seriously.

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Scaramucci, a Wall Street financier, said Thursday in a television interview that he has a "very good idea who the senior leakers are", adding that he had talked to Attorney General Jeff Sessions and to his "buddies" in the Federal Bureau of Investigation about the matter. Spicer had adamantly opposed bringing on the NY financier and former Trump campaign fundraiser, multiple sources said.

Meanwhile, Trump continues to publicly decry his own attorney general, Jeff Sessions, tweeting this week that Sessions is "beleaguered".

"I think it reflects poorly on Reince that he didn't take my offer to come in and be our chief operating officer, but I say that in jest obviously", Scaramucci said at the briefing.

Priebus told CNN he had been talking to Trump for some time about exiting the White House, and is the latest in a long line of officials to leave or not take a job at the White House.

He also threatened to fire White House staffers who leaked news about a dinner he had with the president. "He is a Great American".

Neither Priebus nor Bannon had any comment on Scaramucci's remarks.

"So this is not like a situation where there's a bunch of ill-will feelings", Priebus said. Once he said that it had been one of the great honours of his life to serving Trump and the country.

'I think we've still got a good relationship.

Trump tweeted that Kelly is the new chief of staff. I'll get to the person who leaked that to you.

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