Chris Christie pulls out of Trump's White House chief of staff race

By Steve Holland WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, considered one of President Donald Trump's top candidates for White House chief of staff, abruptly withdrew from consideration on Friday, saying now is not the right time for him to take the job. The decision leaves the president's son-in-law and senior adviser, Jared Kushner, and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer as two top possibilities for the position.

Reuters December 15, 2018 02:05:46 IST
Chris Christie pulls out of Trump's White House chief of staff race

Chris Christie pulls out of Trumps White House chief of staff race

By Steve Holland

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, considered one of President Donald Trump's top candidates for White House chief of staff, abruptly withdrew from consideration on Friday, saying now is not the right time for him to take the job.

The decision leaves the president's son-in-law and senior adviser, Jared Kushner, and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer as two top possibilities for the position.

Christie met Trump at the White House on Thursday night and immediately shot to the top of the president's short list to fill an opening to be created when retired Marine General John Kelly steps down in early January.

"It's an honour to have the president consider me as he looks to choose a new White House chief of staff," Christie said in a statement. "However, I've told the president that now is not the right time for me or my family to undertake this serious assignment."

"As a result, I have asked him to no longer keep me in any of his considerations for this post," Christie said.

Trump has no deadline for deciding on a replacement for Kelly, whose departure as chief of staff was announced last week, and, as always, he could change his mind, a source with knowledge of the search said on Friday.

White House deputy press secretary Hogan Gidley told reporters it was possible Trump could ask Kelly to stay a bit beyond his scheduled departure in early January.

"The president said yesterday that he has about five names," Gidley said. "We expect him to make an announcement pretty quickly."

A brash politician and former federal prosecutor, Christie was a senior adviser to Trump's 2016 campaign after ending his own bid for the Republican presidential nomination.

The White House chief of staff job is considered one of the most important in Washington because its occupant carries out the president's priorities and makes sure he has the information to make decisions.

Under Trump, the chief of staff has been heavily involved in damage control and trying to manage what has been a chaotic presidency. Kelly lasted nearly a year and a half, having succeeded Trump's first chief of staff, Reince Priebus, who was dispatched after six months.

Trump has been hearing appeals from some advisers - in and out of the White House - to consider Kushner, who is married to his daughter, Ivanka Trump, two sources said.

Kushner has been involved in some of Trump's victories, such as helping negotiate a trade agreement with Canada and Mexico and promoting prison reform legislation. He has also been involved in developing a Middle East peace plan that has yet to be released.

Lighthizer has been at the heart of Trump's trade policy, executing one of his biggest campaign promises to overhaul foreign trade deals by using tariffs to try to open markets.

(Additional reporting by Roberta Rampton; Editing by Bill Trott and Jonathan Oatis)

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

Updated Date:

TAGS:

Find latest and upcoming tech gadgets online on Tech2 Gadgets. Get technology news, gadgets reviews & ratings. Popular gadgets including laptop, tablet and mobile specifications, features, prices, comparison.

also read

Canada will continue to stand up against Chinese human rights abuses, PM Trudeau says
World

Canada will continue to stand up against Chinese human rights abuses, PM Trudeau says

OTTAWA (Reuters) - Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Friday said he will continue to stand up against China's "coercive diplomacy" and its human rights abuses in Hong Kong and Xinjiang after being rebuked by Beijing for similar comments earlier this week. "We will stand up loudly and clearly for human rights all around the world, whether it is talking about the situation faced by the Uighurs, whether it is talking about the very concerning situation in Hong Kong, whether it's calling out China for its coercive diplomacy," Trudeau said in a news conference. (Reporting by Steve Scherer and Julie Gordon, Editing by Franklin Paul)

Young people in France: 'Don't make us scapegoats for COVID-19'
World

Young people in France: 'Don't make us scapegoats for COVID-19'

By Caroline Pailliez PARIS (Reuters) - Solene Tissot, a 19-year-old student in Paris, will obey the curfew imposed to fight COVID-19, but she has one request for her country's leaders: don't blame young people for the second wave of the virus. "There's been this kind of assigning guilt to young people," she said on Friday, hours before the new curfew was to come into force in Paris and major French cities. "I reject that." After a lull over the summer, the rates of transmission of coronavirus are going up in many parts of Europe and officials have identified social interactions between young people as a source of the resurgence.

Wider Image: Jailed Philippine activist lays to rest her three-month-old baby
World

Wider Image: Jailed Philippine activist lays to rest her three-month-old baby

By Adrian Portugal and Eloisa Lopez MANILA (Reuters) - Jailed Philippine activist Reina Mae Nasino wanted to hold her three-month-old daughter for the last time before she was laid to rest on Friday but she could not. Heavily armed prison officials guarding her refused to uncuff her despite pleas from her family and human rights supporters, who have decried what they described as inhumane treatment of Nasino and other mothers in Philippine jails.