President Trump has given Reince Priebus until July 4th to “clean up” the White House before major staff changes are made, Politico reports.
Administration officials and outside advisers familiar with the situation say that Trump “berated Priebus in the Oval Office in front of his former campaign manager Corey Lewandowski and deputy campaign manager David Bossie for the dysfunction in the White House.”
“I’m giving you until July 4,” Trump said, according to the Politico article.
“I don’t want them to come into this mess. If I’m going to clean house, they will come in as fresh blood.”
Meanwhile, White House press secretary Sean Spicer denies the report.
“Whoever is saying that is either a liar or out of the loop,” Spicer said.
The change-up date also happens to be the Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s deadline for passage of the Republican health care bill through the chamber, which has received criticism on both sides of the aisle.
Some say Trump has considered this idea before.
“It’s become comical that every holiday becomes a referendum on Reince,” an adviser to the president reportedly said.
One outside adviser says Trump repeatedly threatens to fire people to “motivate them to do better.”
“Trump will literally ask anyone who will listen, ‘Do you think Reince is doing a good job?’ or ‘Do you think that I should get rid of him?'” the adviser said.
Others, however, dispute this claim.
“I don’t think he likes to gratuitously fire people,” former campaign adviser Sam Nunberg said. “He wants to give people chances.”
Nunberg himself was fired by Trump.
One former campaign official says that Priebus has improved since the warning.
“For the first time in the White House there’s true structure and discipline and order instilled, despite other distractions that might be out there,” the former official said.
“They are getting down to the work of governing and moving the ball forward.”
The shortest-serving chief of staff is James Baker, who served the last five months of the George H.W. Bush administration.
President Harry Truman was the first president to have a chief of staff.
Sources close to the situation say that Trump does not want to break this record.
“The White House is different. You can’t make quick changes, it’s an institution. Once someone is gone from there, they’re gone,” Nunberg said.
“With that said, I think Reince will be there for the long haul.”