Donald Trump was truly in his element with reality teevee, where he could fire people at will and there would always be a crop of fresh faces the next week. Unfortunately, after having alienated lots of Republicans, including the ones who work for him, there isn’t a long list of supplicants wanting to work at the White House as there has been in other administrations.This could be especially problematic if senior officials begin leaving and that could be the case. CNN:
Two of the most senior officials who are on the potential departure list are Don McGahn, the White House counsel, and HR McMaster, the national security adviser. The President, like with many of his advisers, has aired frustrations openly with both men. But it’s far from certain whether either official will leave.
McGahn, who is a potential witness in special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation, has compelling legal reasons to stay at the White House, a person familiar with the matter said, despite the President’s level of satisfaction.
McMaster, an active duty three-star Army general, served as a commandeering influence in the West Wing. But he has clashed with Trump over policy in Afghanistan and Iran.
Gary Cohn has been thinking about leaving and is very ambivalent.
Gary Cohn, the National Economic Council chairman whose departure has been a constant subject of speculation since August, is still weighing whether to remain in his post, and for how long, people who have spoken with him say. He has committed internally to helping shepherd through an infrastructure plan, though it’s not clear for how long. He declared on Saturday he was “happy” in his job when asked by Trump in front of reporters at Camp David.
Potentially in Trump’s sights to replace Cohn, should he leave: Larry Kudlow, the conservative commentator, who speaks regularly with Trump and advised the White House on their tax reform efforts.
And of course the high ticket item that remains unfilled is the Chief Strategist’s job, vacant since Steve Bannon was asked to leave months ago.
The most gaping hole, according to multiple Trump allies inside and outside the White House, is that of a chief strategist who can channel Trump’s populist appeal while translating it into policy and political wins. Since the departure of Steve Bannon over the summer, that position has remained vacant, leading to grumbling from some of Trump’s allies at the state of his political operation.
Former campaign aides Corey Lewandowski, Jason Miller, David Urban and David Bossie have all been raised as possible candidates to fill the job. But whether they will pass muster from Kelly — who has scant political experience — or whether going inside the White House at this point is even feasible for them personally and professionally remains an open question.
Unpredictability, chaos, and possibly needing to retain defense counsel as Robert Mueller and the FBI continue to investigate Trump-Russia, are the main issues that add to the revolving door on the West Wing.