President Donald Trump thinks his former chief of staff, John Kelly, might be an anonymous source in this week's Atlantic article reporting that he'd once referred to fallen soldiers as "suckers" and "losers" -- a claim the president has emphatically denied.
"I don't know that it was him. I haven't seen that. I mean, I see anonymous, but it could have been a guy like a John Kelly," Trump said during a press conference.
"I know John Kelly, he was with me, didn’t do a good job, had no temperament and ultimately he was petered out,” Trump said.
Trump said he asked Kelly to resign due to his poor performance in his White House role.
“I told him, ‘John, you’re going to have to go. Please give me your letter of resignation.’ And we did that. And now he goes out and badmouths,” Trump said.
“He got — was exhausted. This man was totally exhausted, he wasn’t even able to function in the last number of months. He was not able to function. He was sort of a tough guy. By the time he got eaten up in this world — it’s a different world than he was used to, he was unable to function.”
In January 2019, Kelly exited the White House after 17 months on the job. He described the job as holding back the president’s policy urges following hectic early months marked by intraoffice fighting between other staff members
In reference to Kelly's addresses to reporters, Trump said: “You look at some of his news conferences, what happened to him. He got eaten alive. he was unable to handle the pressure of this.”
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