Despite what Donald Trump may claim, the White House under him appears to be out of control.
In yet another example of the chaos that has reigned in the Oval Office since Trump took over, the New York Times reports that Chief of Staff John Kelly and former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski got into a physical confrontation on the same day that the families of Parkland shooting victims visited the White House. Kelly, whose appointment as the White House Chief of Staff had been welcomed even by Donald Trump’s detractors, does not appear to be the calm head many expected him to be.
According to the report, the fight broke out right outside the Oval Office on February 21 of this year when the two of them left Trump alone to take a call. Kelly was reportedly angry at Lewandowski for profiting from his contract with Trump’s re-election political action committee. Moreover, Kelly was also livid with the comments Lewandowski had made on television regarding the manner in which Kelly had handled the domestic abuse allegations against then-White House Staff Secretary Rob Porter.
Soon after leaving the Oval Office, Kelly reportedly asked staff members to get Lewandowski out of the building. Their argument escalated, leading Kelly to grab Lewandowski by the collar before shoving him up against a wall. The report suggests that Lewandowski didn’t retort to the physical confrontation in a manner to escalate the brawl, but Secret Service soon intervened to break the fight.
According to a half-dozen people familiar with what took place, Kelly and Lewandowski had been fighting in front of the president before it moved outside the Oval. When Kelly wanted Lewandowski tossed out, the altercation began https://t.co/VQE5Hj1oRr— Maggie Haberman (@maggieNYT) October 22, 2018
There is emerging evidence that not everything seems to be right with John Kelly. Earlier in the week, there had been reports about him getting into a shouting match with National Security Adviser John Bolton over the increasing number of immigrants coming to the United States from Mexico. Then, on Sunday, former White House Communications Director Anthony Scaramucci, who was fired by Kelly after only 11 days, said that the chief of staff had been prone to “hissy fits” making the entire environment “demoralizing” for others, as reported by Newsweek.
The latest report will only add fuel to speculations that John Kelly might be on his way out of the White House. He has reportedly considered leaving the administration for a while now, and it would be interesting to see if the fallout from the report about him attacking Lewandowski actually precipitates into an exit. But this much may be clear: the Trump White House is much more chaotic and feud-filled than we can possibly imagine.