Melania, Ivanka Trump, and Jared Kushner are reportedly having a huge influence over the firing decisions being made by President Donald Trump, Newsweek reports. This influence recently reared its head when the First Lady called for deputy national security adviser Mira Ricardel to be terminated from her post.
“It is the position of the Office of the First Lady that she no longer deserves the honor of serving in this White House,” Trump said via a statement by her spokeswoman Stephanie Grisham.
This was an unprecedented move for the wife of a U.S. president.
As Newsweek notes, Melania has previously hinted at her role in personnel decisions in Trump’s White House. During an interview with ABC News, Melania indicated that she had found that there were people on staff who she distrusted and she’d shared her feelings with her husband.
“Some people, they don’t work there anymore,” she said at the time.
The Guardian reports that Mira Ricardel antagonized the First Lady’s staff when she questioned seating arrangements on the plane transporting them to Melania’s first official overseas trip to the African continent. Ricardel also reportedly feuded with the East Wing staff because of their use of national security resources on the trip. There are also claims that she had an antagonistic working relationship with defense secretary John Mattis and chief of staff John Kelly.
— CNN Breaking News (@cnnbrk) November 13, 2018
On Tuesday afternoon, CNN’s Jake Tapper tweeted that President Trump had informed advisors that he had made the decision to fire Ricardel “— but she’s been given a bit of time to clear out desk.”
“He listens to her more intently than anyone and respects her advice and counsel not only because she is his wife, but because her loyalty, grace, trust, elegance under fire, intellect and instincts are time-tested and proven,” Thomas J. Barrack J, the president’s friend, said to The New York Times in August of Melania’s influence.
WH official: @POTUS has told advisers he’s made the decision to fire deputy National Security Adviser Mira Ricardel — but she’s been given a bit of time to clear out desk. @FLOTUS publicly called for her firing earlier today.
— Jake Tapper (@jaketapper) November 13, 2018
As for Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump, Newsweek reports that the husband and wife team of senior presidential advisers are gunning for Mike Pence’s Chief Of Staff, Nick Ayers, to replace John Kelly. There has long been speculation that Trump wants to be rid of Kelly as his Chief Of Staff and it seems that Ivanka and Jared have chosen Ayers as their top pick for the role. If chosen, Ayers would be Donald Trump’s third chief of staff so far.
There are also claims that Trump and Kushner are not well liked by several members of the Trump administration and that John Kelly and Ivanka Trump have had disputes in the past. But we’ll have to wait and see whether their influence with the President will get him fired.