Opinion: Chief of staff plays integral role in White House operations
EDITOR'S NOTE: Boris Epshteyn formerly served as a Senior Advisor to the Trump Campaign and served in the White House as Special Assistant to The President and Assistant Communications Director for Surrogate Operations.
WASHINGTON (Sinclair Broadcast Group) - There is a new chief in town. General John Kelly has moved from overseeing the Department of Homeland Security to bringing new order to the Trump West Wing as the White House chief of staff.
Chief of staff is not a glorious position.
However, the functions and abilities of a White House chief of staff have a direct effect on all of the American people.
The chief of staff is tasked with organizing the president’s schedule, determining who has access to the president and, vitally, setting legislative priorities of an administration.
The chief of staff does not need to be confirmed by Congress, and there is no requirement that the president fill the position. Let’s take a look back at history:
From George Washington until after World War II, presidents had various private secretaries, but no formal chief of staff.
President Eisenhower created the official role of chief of staff.
The current status of a strong chief of staff took hold under Presidents Nixon and Ford with powerful chiefs such as Haldeman, General Haig and Dick Cheney.
General Kelly has been given the full scope of power available to a White House Chief of Staff. Look for General Kelly to tame down the freewheeling nature that has dominated the Trump White House over the first six months.
All staff members now report directly through him, including senior staffers such as Jared Kushner and Steve Bannon.
Do not, however, expect that the new chief will change President Trump at his core or his approach to connecting with the American people through Twitter and other mediums.
The bottom line is this: General Kelly will bring more organization and precision to the White House. He is not coming in to revamp the Trump presidency but to unleash the full potential of it.