US President Donald Trump Says Budget Director Mick Mulvaney To Be Acting White House Chief of Staff


Mick Mulvaney is Director of the Office of Management and Budget at present. (File)

Washington: 

Donald Trump announced Friday that his budget director Mick Mulvaney will step in as acting chief of staff to replace John Kelly — amid indications the president is struggling to fill the key post.

“Mick has done an outstanding job while in the Administration,” Trump tweeted. “I look forward to working with him in this new capacity as we continue to MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN!

“John will be staying until the end of the year. He is a GREAT PATRIOT and I want to personally thank him for his service!”

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)





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Why Is White Rice Blamed For Weight Gain? Decoding Nutritional Value Of White Rice


It is no mystery that white rice is blamed for weight gain. A grain which is staple food of numerous states in India, white rice has now be sidelined in diets of many people. All thanks to the weight loss industry! But is this really true? Is the food which is so widely consumed by people all across the country, fattening? Let’s find out. City-based nutritionist Pooja Malhotra says that white rice is blamed for weight gain as the fibre gets removed from the grain during the process of refining.

Why is white rice blamed for weight gain?

She goes on to say that once fiber is removed from rice, its glycemic index increases. “This means that breakdown of sugar in the body happens quickly and sugar is instantly released into the blood stream. Also, a lot of minerals get removed during the process of refining. These are the primary reasons why white rice is blamed for weight gain.”

Also read: 8 Myths About Rice You Should Never Believe

Debunking the myth about white rice

Eating white rice as part of a balanced and wholesome meal is not going to result in weight gain, asserts Pooja. Rice has been traditionally eaten in combination with pulses. Eating it in such wholesome combinations, in the right proportion and adding ghee to your meal will prevent the weight gain that you are always afraid of. Also, chose hand-pounded single polished variety of rice.

Explains Pooja, “Eating dal rice with a dollop of ghee will slow down the breakdown of sugar present in rice. This means that sugar will slowly enter the blood stream. In case of a cereal pulse combination, the amino acids which are lacking in cereals are present in pulses, and the amino acids lacking in pulses are present in cereals. Thus, a cereal pulse combination has a complete amino acid profile. Adding some ghee to it will provide you with the essential fatty acids.”

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White rice with dal and ghee makes for a wholesome and healthy meal
Photo Credit: iStock

Also read: Brown Rice Vs White Rice: Which One Is Healthier And How?

Nutritional value of rice

Rice is definitely on the higher side when it comes to carbs, but the same can be managed by keeping your portion size in check. It has about to 8-9% protein, says Pooja, while adding that rice is also a good source of minerals like magnesium, selenium, folic acid, phosphorus, thiamin and niacin.

So, why does rice make you fat?

According to Pooja, the reason why people end up gaining weight by eating rice is because they fail to check their portion size. When it comes to eating chapatti, making a decision about portion size is easy. But this is not the case with rice, where it is also easy to indulge in its delicious taste. Not overeating rice is the key to avoid weight gain from it.

Also read: Is White Rice Safe For Diabetics?

“You have to rely on fullness signals that your brain gives you while eating. Eat only till the point your hunger is satisfied, and don’t give in to greed. Eat in a peaceful environment, focusing only on your meal. If you are engrossed in a gadget or TV or a book, you will not be able to pick up your fullness signals. Also, chew your food slowly and properly,” she suggests.

(Pooja Malhotra is a nutritionist based in Delhi)

Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information.

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Donald Trump’s Potential Next Chief Of Staff Pick Nick Ayers Leaving White House


Nick Ayers reportedly would not commit to signing on through 2020 to the president’s irritation.

Washington, United States: 

The White House official widely touted as Donald Trump’s favorite to succeed his outgoing chief of staff John Kelly is instead leaving the administration at year’s end, he tweeted Sunday.

Nick Ayers, the 36-year-old chief of staff to Vice President Mike Pence, tweeted that “I will be departing at the end of the year but will work with the #MAGA team to advance the cause,” referring to Trump’s campaign.

“Thank you @realDonaldTrump, @VP, and my great colleagues for the honor to serve our Nation at The White House.”

Trump announced Saturday that Kelly, 68, would leave the administration — the latest key personnel move at a time of mounting pressure from the Russia election-meddling probe that comes amid increased focus on preparing for the 2020 elections.

Shortly after Ayers said he would not take on the role, Trump jumped online to tweet: “I am in the process of interviewing some really great people for the position of White House Chief of Staff.”

john kelly donald trump afp

John Kelly was long rumoured to be leaving the Trump administration.

“Fake News has been saying with certainty it was Nick Ayers, a spectacular person who will always be with our #MAGA agenda,” he continued, adding that “I will be making a decision soon!”

Ayers reportedly would not commit to signing on through 2020 to the president’s irritation.

And according to sources cited by The Washington Post, the youthful but politically savvy senior staffer was “skeptical” of taking the position because of the rocky tenures of Kelly and his predecessor Reince Priebus.

When Kelly was picked in July 2017 to replace Priebus, he inherited a White House plagued by political intrigue and internal disorder, and under a cloud because of the allegations of collusion with Russia.

Other potentials on Trump’s shortlist include Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney and Republican congressman Mark Meadows, a leader of the far-right House Freedom Caucus, according to the Post.

The impending departure leaves Trump reliant on a reduced group of key advisers even as he prepares to deal in the new year with a Democratic-controlled House of Representatives.

The opposition party will have the power to launch investigations, issue subpoenas, and generally make his life more difficult.

(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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James Alex Fields, White Nationalist, Convicted Of Murdering Heather Heyer


James Fields, a resident of Maumee, Ohio, was photographed hours before the car attack (Reuters)

Charlottesville: 

A white nationalist who drove his car into a crowd protesting against a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, last year, killing one of the counter-demonstrators, was found guilty on Friday of first-degree murder and nine other counts.

The jury deliberated for about seven hours before convicting James Fields, 21, of all charges stemming from the deadly attack that occurred after police had declared an unlawful assembly and cleared a city park of white supremacists gathered for the “Unite the Right” rally.

Fields, who did not take the witness stand to defend himself, faces a maximum penalty of life in prison. The 12 members of the mostly white jury – seven women and five men – were to return to court on Monday for the start of the penalty phase of the trial.

Wearing a light-blue sweater and eyeglasses, Fields sat expressionless between his two attorneys as the verdict was pronounced, glancing briefly at spectators in the crowded courtroom.

Defense attorneys never disputed that Fields was behind the wheel of the Dodge Charger that sent bodies flying when it crashed into a crowd on Aug. 12, 2017, killing counterprotester Heather Heyer, 32 and injuring 19 others.

Instead, Fields’ lawyers suggested during the two-week trial that he felt intimidated by a hostile crowd and acted to protect himself.

Defense attorney Denise Lunsford told jurors in closing arguments that her client had expressed remorse when arrested, saying to police, “I’m sorry I didn’t want to hurt anyone. I thought they were attacking me.”

Prosecutors countered that Field was motivated by hatred and had come to the rally to harm others.

Day Of Tension

The car-ramming capped a day of tension and physical clashes between hundreds of white supremacists and neo-Nazis who had assembled in Charlottesville to protest against the removal of statues commemorating two Confederate generals of the U.S. Civil War, and groups of opposing demonstrators.

The night before, the “Unite the Right” protesters had staged a torch-lit march through the nearby University of Virginia campus, chanting racist and anti-Semitic slogans.

Republican U.S. President Donald Trump was strongly condemned by fellow Republicans as well as Democrats for saying afterward that “both sides” were to blame for the violence.

Fields, a resident of Maumee, Ohio, was photographed hours before the car attack carrying a shield with the emblem of a far-right hate group. He has identified himself as a neo-Nazi.

Fields also faces separate federal hate-crime charges, which carry a potential death sentence. He has pleaded not guilty in that case as well.

The mothers of both Fields and Heyer were present in the courtroom when the verdict was returned.

In addition to murder, Fields was convicted of five counts of aggravated malicious wounding, three counts of malicious wounding and a hit-and-run offense.

Four other men from California described by prosecutors as members of a militant white supremacist group, Rise Above Movement, were arrested in October on federal charges of instigating violence during the Charlottesville rallies.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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CNN Correspondent Jim Acosta’s White House Press Pass Restored For Now


CNN reporter Jim Acosta’s White House press pass had been revoked after a run-in with Donald Trump.

Washington: 

A U.S. judge on Friday temporarily restored White House press credentials to CNN correspondent Jim Acosta, which were revoked following a contentious press conference with President Donald Trump, saying there should be a due process in place for limiting a journalist’s access to the White House.

U.S. District Judge Timothy Kelly, who is hearing CNN’s lawsuit challenging to the revocation, ordered the White House to restore Acosta’s press pass while the case is pending.





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CNN Wins Ruling Against White House, Jim Acosta’s Pass Restored For Now


Jim Acosta is the first reporter with a so-called hard pass to be banned. (Reuters)

Washington: 

A federal judge on Friday ruled in favor of CNN and reporter Jim Acosta in a dispute with President Donald Trump, ordering the White House to temporarily restore the press credentials that the Trump Administration took away from Acosta last week.

In a victory for the cable network and for press access generally, Judge Timothy J. Kelly granted CNN’s motion for a temporary restraining order that will prevent the White House from keeping Acosta off the White House grounds.

The White House revoked the reporter’s press pass last week after a heated exchange between him and Trump and a brief altercation with a press aide at a news conference. Acosta, CNN’s chief White House correspondent, is the first reporter with a so-called hard pass to be banned.

CNN sued Trump and other White House officials on Tuesday over the revocation. Kelly’s ruling was the first legal skirmish in that lawsuit. It has the immediate effect of sending Acosta back to the White House, pending further arguments and a possible trial. The litigation is in its early stages, and a trial could be months in the future.

Kelly, whom Trump appointed to the federal bench last year, handed down his ruling two days after the network and government lawyers argued over whether the president had the power to exclude a reporter from the White House.

In his decision, Kelly ruled that Acosta’s First Amendment rights overruled the White House’s right to have orderly press conferences. Kelly said he agreed with the government’s argument that there was no First Amendment right to come onto the White House grounds. But, he said, once the White House opened up the grounds to reporters, the First Amendment applied.

He also agreed with CNN’s argument that the White House did not provide due process. He said the White House’s decision-making was “so shrouded in mystery that the government could not tell me. … who made the decision.” The White House’s later written arguments for banning Acosta were belated and weren’t sufficient to satisfy due process, Kelly said.

White House press secretary Sarah Sanders announced Acosta’s “indefinite” suspension last week after the confrontation at the press conference. Trump and Sanders have had several run-ins with Acosta stretching back to before Trump became president.

Acosta watched Friday’s proceedings from the courtroom in Washington, joined by a team of attorneys including Ted Olson, a former solicitor general in George W. Bush’s administration, and Ted Boutrous, a star litigator and media-law specialist.

CNN has argued that the ban on Acosta violated his First Amendment rights because it amounts to “viewpoint discrimination”–that is, the president is punishing him for statements and coverage he didn’t like. The network has also said the action violates Acosta’s Fifth Amendment right to due process because his exclusion follows no written guidelines or rules and has no appeal or review procedures.

CNN had requested “emergency” relief from the judge, arguing that Acosta’s rights were being violated with each passing hour.

Until the White House’s action last week, no reporter credentialed to cover the president had ever had a press pass revoked.

A government lawyer, James Burnham, argued in a hearing before Kelly on Wednesday that the president was within his rights to ban any reporter from the White House at any time, just as he excludes reporters from interviews in the Oval Office. He said Acosta could report on the president “just as effectively” by watching the president on TV or by calling sources within the White House. He also said CNN wouldn’t be injured by Acosta’s exclusion since CNN has dozens of other journalists credentialed for the White House.

Burnham also explained that Trump’s rationale for Acosta’s ban was his “rudeness” at last week’s press conference, in effect arguing that Acosta’s conduct, not his right to free speech, was the relevant issue.

The assertions drew a rebuttal from CNN’s lawyer, Boutrous, who described the ban on the reporter as arbitrary, capricious and unprecedented. He said White House reporters need access to the premises to meet with sources and to report on untelevised “gaggles,” impromptu discussions with press aides and other officials, so that banning a reporter from the grounds harms his or her ability to do their job.

Media organizations have been alarmed by the White House’s treatment of Acosta, saying that revoking his “hard pass” to enter the White House is a threat to other journalists who might be similarly banned. Trump has suggested other reporters could face a similar fate if they displease him in some unspecified way. Thirteen news organizations, including The Washington Post and Fox News, said Wednesday they would jointly file a friend-of-the-court brief supporting CNN’s position.

The White House Correspondents Association, which represents journalists in negotiations over access to the president, filed its own brief on Thursday that urged the court “to roundly reject the president’s dangerous legal position.” It disputed the government’s claim that the president has “absolute, unbridled discretion to decide who can report from inside the White House.”

During the presidential campaign in 2015 and 2016, Trump banned more than a dozen news organizations from his rallies and public events, including The Post. But he said he wouldn’t do something similar as president. Last week, he went back on that statement.

Trump’s 2020 re-election campaign has used the CNN lawsuit to drum up contributions, portraying the suit as evidence of “liberal bias” – an assertion Boutrous brought up on Wednesday to demonstrate that Trump had political reasons for banning Acosta.

“CNN is SUING President Trump, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, a Secret Service agent, and other White House officials …” the fundraising email says. “… All because they REVOKED Jim Acosta’s press badge after his continuous grandstanding and inappropriate refusal to yield to other reporters.

“President Trump will NOT put up with the media’s liberal bias and utter disrespect for this Administration and the hardworking Americans who stand with us.”

 

 

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)





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Donald Trump To Visit California Wildfire Victims: White House


Trump initially showed little sympathy for the famously liberal state as the death toll began

Washington, United States: 

President Donald Trump will fly Saturday to California to meet victims of wildfires that have killed at least 59 people and destroyed the homes of thousands, the White House said Thursday.

At least 300 people are still missing and the death toll is expected to rise as recovery teams conduct house-to-house searches amid the wreckage of the sprawling blazes in northern and southern California.

Trump will “meet with individuals impacted by the wildfires,” a White House spokeswoman said.

Fifty-six of the deaths and most of those unaccounted for are from the Butte County town of Paradise in northern California, which was decimated by the so-called Camp Fire that erupted a week ago.

Trump initially showed little sympathy for the famously liberal state as the death toll began to mount, blaming poor forest management in a tweet posted on Friday that also threatened to cut federal funding. 

“Billions of dollars are given each year, with so many lives lost, all because of gross mismanagement of the forests. Remedy now, or no more Fed payments!” he said.

Virtually every home in Paradise, a town of around 26,000 located 80 miles (130 kilometers) north of the state capital Sacramento, was destroyed by the fire, which was fueled by high winds.

The Butte County Sheriff’s Office published a list late Wednesday of about 300 people who are missing. Some may have fled their homes and not been in touch with family and friends but others are believed to have died in the fast-moving Camp Fire.

At the southern end of the state the Woolsey Fire has razed 98,000 acres (39,660 hectares) and has been 57 percent contained.

A number of celebrities have lost their homes in Malibu as a result of the inferno, including Pierce Brosnan, Miley Cyrus, Neil Young, Robin Thicke, Shannen Doherty and Gerard Butler.





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A White House Aide Picked A Fight With Melania Trump; The First Lady Won


The first lady privately said Mira Ricardel (right) was a corrosive influence.

A transoceanic personnel crisis that engulfed the National Security Council this week is partly rooted in a bureaucratic dispute over the seating arrangements aboard first lady Melania Trump’s plane to Africa last month during her maiden solo trip abroad.

As the East Wing prepared the flight manifest for the marquee trip, deputy national security adviser Mira Ricardel became angry that seats on the first lady’s government jet were assigned to a larger-than-usual security entourage and a small press corps with none for Ricardel or another NSC staffer, according to current U.S. officals and others familiar with the trip and its aftermath.

Policy experts from the NSC and State Department were advised to fly separately and to meet the first lady’s party on the ground, a practice the State Department had often used, but Ricardel objected strenuously, those people said. She threatened to revoke NSC resources associated with the trip, meaning no policy staff would advise the first lady during her visits to Ghana, Kenya, Malawi and Egypt.

Bad blood between Ricardel and Melania Trump and her staff continued for weeks after the trip, with the first lady privately arguing that the NSC’s No. 2 official was a corrosive influence in the White House and should be dismissed. But national security adviser John Bolton rebuffed the first lady and protected his deputy, prompting the first lady’s spokeswoman, Stephanie Grisham, to issue an extraordinary statement to reporters Tuesday effectively calling for Ricardel’s firing.

“It is the position of the Office of the first lady that she no longer deserves the honor of serving in this White House,” Grisham said of Ricardel in the statement.

After an uncomfortable day of limbo, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders announced Wednesday evening that Ricardel was leaving the White House.

“Mira Ricardel will continue to support the President as she departs the White House to transition to a new role within the Administration,” she said in a statement.

An NSC spokesman declined to elaborate.

The first lady’s decision to publicly advocate for the ouster of a senior member of her husband’s staff shows a new willingness on her part to weigh in on White House operations and marks a change from earlier in the Trump administration, when she repeatedly played down her role as an adviser to the president.

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Melania Trump seen at the 2017 turkey pardoning ceremony at the White House.

It also comes as the president is mulling personnel changes, including possibly ousting Chief of Staff John Kelly and firing Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen.

Anita McBride, who was chief of staff to first lady Laura Bush, says Melania Trump’s move was a dramatic show of power.

“If anyone had questions about her willingness to exert her influence, they got their answer,” she said.

Ricardel’s dismissal also serves as a rebuke of Bolton, known for his sharp elbows and ability to navigate internal tensions, who refused for weeks to fire his hand-picked deputy and worked in the past day to protect her.

Soon after the first lady’s office issued its statement Tuesday, surprised senior White House aides walked to Ricardel’s office to see whether she was still there. She was, albeit confused.

Bolton, who was awakened in Asia in the middle of the night and told of the dustup, was soon on the phone, telling Ricardel to remain at her post, three administration officials said.

The White House was trying to find a soft landing place for Ricardel, but agencies including the Commerce Department, where she worked in the first year of the Trump administration, are hesitant to take her on because of her reputation, two senior administration officials said.

The first lady’s statement came after months of tension in the White House over Ricardel’s abrasive interactions with staffers in both the East Wing and the West Wing, according to several current and former staffers.

Melania Trump and Ricardel have never met, according to people familiar with each of them. But the first lady viewed the conservative operative, who was among the most senior women in the West Wing, as a toxic influence in the White House, to the point that she spoke to Trump about Ricardel after the Africa trip and authorized others to spread the word that Ricardel had overstepped the mark, several people familiar with recent events said.

A senior White House official said the first lady believed Ricardel was spreading false rumors about her office, including a misleading story that aides had arranged a $10,000 hotel stay in Egypt. Other White House aides said Ricardel belittled underlings, shouted at professional staff and was the most disliked aide in the West Wing.

Last weekend, according to administration officials, the first lady’s office again asked Bolton to oust Ricardel. Others, including Kelly, have wanted her gone for months, administration officials said, with little success in overcoming Bolton’s objections.

Bolton declined again – and went to Asia.

While the first lady’s public statement came as a surprise to many, including in the White House, Paolo Zampolli, a longtime friend of the Trumps’, said the move isn’t out of character for the first lady. “Our first lady is very strong, and she has the right to choose who she’s working with,” he said.

In past administrations, first ladies exerted similar or greater influence, but always behind the scenes. The most famous modern example is Nancy Reagan’s engineering the ouster of chief of staff Donald T. Regan, who had made the dire mistake of hanging up on her. While Nancy Reagan’s fingerprints were all over the firing, there were no statements from her office to that effect.

“You never hang up on the first lady. She can be your strongest ally. She can help you more than anybody realizes,” said Kenneth Duberstein, who fared better as chief of staff to Reagan.

Martha Washington, historian Carl Sferrazza Anthony noted, once wrote that she felt like a “state prisoner” because of protocol rules and a schedule set in part by her husband’s chief adviser, Tobias Lear. And there was no love lost between Mary Lincoln and Abraham Lincoln’s chief counselors, John Hay and John Nicolay, who referred to her as “the hellcat” behind her back.

Pat Nixon, Anthony says, chafed at top White House aides H.R. “Bob” Haldeman and John Erlichman for perceived offenses that included not giving her enough notice before travel and for not taking her own ambitious agenda seriously, Anthony said.

“It goes back so far, that what we’re really talking about is human nature and the problem of the boss’ wife,” he said.

Melania Trump has taken on a more public role recently, launching her anti-bullying campaign earlier this year and traveling to Africa in October.

She has made symbolic gestures that suggest she felt free to make her views plain and to disagree with her husband.

In a rare sit-down interview with ABC News last month, Mrs. Trump was asked whether it was true that she had more control over her notoriously volatile husband than anyone else. “Oh, I wish,” she said. “I give him my honest advice and honest opinions. And then he does what he wants to do.”

Melania Trump has privately complained about other current and former White House officials to her husband – Steve Bannon, chief among them – but has never issued such a public statement before.

The East Wing often does not approve its statements with the White House. Senior White House aides, including Kelly and Bolton, were not aware the statement was coming before it was issued Tuesday. Sanders had not seen the final statement, a senior administration official said.

Even Kelly, who wanted Ricardel gone, admitted to others the situation was handled poorly, and that the White House looked bad.

The controversy has added to the turmoil surrounding the White House following last week’s midterm elections where Republicans lost control of the House and maintained a slim Senate majority despite having a favorable electoral map this cycle. Last week Trump fired Attorney General Jeff Sessions before heading over to Paris over the weekend for the commemoration of the end of World War I where he clashed with French President Emmanuel Macron.

“This shows it’s still a broken and dysfunctional White House. Maybe John Kelly has made a few trains run on time, but it’s clearly still broken,” said Chris Whipple, author of a 2017 book, “The Gatekeepers,” about White House chiefs of staff and West Wing operations.

(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)





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“Angry” Donald Trump Expected To Reshuffle Staff In White House Turmoil


Donald Trump suddenly replaced his attorney general Jeff Sessions last week.

Washington: 

An angry Donald Trump is preparing a reshuffle at the White House — reportedly fueled by fallings out between his wife and senior staff — after a week of brooding over midterm elections that weakened the president’s grip on Congress.

The start to the second half of Trump’s first term is enveloped in gloom as the president surveys the damage from the midterms, tension with some of America’s closest allies, and now turmoil inside the administration.

On Wednesday, he was quoted by right-wing website The Daily Caller saying that a reshuffle is coming.

“A lot of people want to come in, a lot of politicians who have had very successful careers want to come in,” he said.

The biggest name on the chopping block, according to multiple US media reports, is chief of staff John Kelly.

A retired Marine Corps general, he has often been nicknamed “the adult in the room” during Trump’s drama-prone administration, even if critics say he has done little to temper the president’s most damaging outbursts.

Now Kelly’s days are numbered, according to the unconfirmed but mounting leaks to US media.

His position, tenuous for months, has been undermined further by First Lady Melania Trump’s anger that Kelly refused to promote some of her aides, reports say.

Nick Ayers, a 36-year-old chief of staff to Vice President Mike Pence and renowned political consultant, is reportedly high on Trump’s list as a replacement.

Another expected reshuffle casualty is Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, a Kelly ally who oversees the politically sensitive task of carrying out Trump’s crackdown on illegal immigration.

Trump told The Daily Caller he’ll make “a decision on homeland shortly.”

Among Nielsen’s critics has been National Security Adviser John Bolton, who last month was widely reported to have erupted in a shouting match with Kelly right outside the Oval Office over her performance.

First Lady strikes

While Melania Trump’s dislike for Kelly remains a rumor, she has been fully open in a rare, protocol-busting demand for the firing of another staffer — Bolton’s deputy Mira Ricardel.

Ricardel “no longer deserves the honor,” Melania Trump’s spokeswoman announced Tuesday, amid a falling out that press leaks say is partly linked to a dispute over seating arrangements on the plane that took the first lady for a tour of African countries in October.

Ricardel remained in her post Wednesday, but it seemed unlikely she could last much longer.

Trump has been in a funk since last week’s midterms which saw the Democrats seize control of the House of Representatives, ending the Republicans’ dominance of both chambers of Congress.

While the Republicans held onto their Senate majority, the Democrats scored heavy gains to take over the House, confronting the president for the first time with the prospect of an opposition that has teeth.

Democrats vow to use their control of powerful oversight committees to go after Trump’s nebulous personal finances and to protect an explosive probe into whether his 2016 election campaign colluded with Russian agents.

Pressure is mounting from the probe, as the special counsel Robert Mueller digs ever more deeply into the president’s inner circle.

When Trump suddenly replaced his attorney general Jeff Sessions last week with a fierce critic of the Russia investigation, Matthew Whitaker, critics accused him of violating the constitution.

The Department of Justice ruled on Wednesday that Whitaker’s appointment is in fact constitutional, but this will do little to calm claims that Trump’s real goal is to defang the Russia probe, which he describes as “a witch hunt.”

Abroad, there’s no respite for the real estate billionaire either.

A weekend trip to Paris for World War I commemorations was marred by a row with President Emmanuel Macron — which saw Trump mockingly refer to Germany’s invasions of France during the two world wars, while also berating America’s European allies in NATO over their defense spending.

The other main takeaway from Trump’s trip — the round criticism of a decision to scrap a visit to an American military cemetery due to the rain — has reportedly left the president incensed, and the prospect of a White House shakeup all the greater.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)





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