WASHINGTON – His White House in turmoil, President Donald Trump abruptly announced late Friday he was appointing Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly to be his chief of staff, ending the tumultuous six-month tenure of Reince Priebus.
After months of speculation about Priebus’ fate, Trump tweeted his decision just as he landed in Washington after a speech in New York in which he lavishly praised Kelly’s performance at Homeland Security.
Priebus, the former Republican National Committee head, was the frequent target of rumors about his job security amid infighting and confusion within the White House and a long whisper campaign by Trump allies. Then, he was the subject of a remarkable public rebuke on Thursday by the new White House communications director.
Priebus told allies that he had offered his resignation to Trump on Thursday.
Trump’s announcement on Twitter said, “I am pleased to inform you that I have just named General/Secretary John F Kelly as White House Chief of Staff. He is a Great American … and a Great Leader. John has also done a spectacular job at Homeland Security. He has been a true star of my Administration.”
He also saluted Priebus, the chief of staff he had just pushed out.
“I would like to thank Reince Priebus for his service and dedication to his country. We accomplished a lot together and I…