Melania calls for national security aide Mira Ricardel's firing

Lester Mason
November 14, 2018

US President Donald Trump is expected to remove US Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen and is considering replacing his chief of staff, John Kelly, a source close to the White House said on Tuesday.

Ricardel had battled with Melania Trump's staff during the first lady's trip to Africa last month, according to the Journal, with spats over seating on the plane and using National Security Council resources.

Ricardel, who is one of National Security Advisor John Bolton's top aides, is also suspected of leaking damaging information about Mrs Trump, according to the Wall Street Journal.

This article was written by Darlene Superville from The Associated Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.

President Donald Trump is reportedly planning to dismiss Homeland Security secretary Kirstjen Nielsen after becoming impatient and frustrated with her approach to immigration. Moreover, Melania Trump's team has told President Trump they believe Ricardel has been the source for negative stories about the first lady. When CNBC reporter Eamon Javers tried to get a statement from a White House official about the first lady's statement, that official responded by saying "the East Wing speaks for the East Wing". While first ladies historically have been known to pressure their husbands over official business, they do not typically issue statements about it.

Why does the first lady have an issue with her?

Ricardel also is known to have clashed with Defense Secretary Jim Mattis over Pentagon political appointee choices since early in his tenure.

The dispute made it hard for Ricardel to land in a top post in the Trump administration, though she was ultimately tapped for the position of undersecretary of commerce for export administration.

Asked if some untrustworthy people still worked in the White House, she replied, "Yes".

If Kelly were to leave, sources say the president has been advised to bring in someone with more political experience in preparation for the 2020 re-election campaign, like Nick Ayers, chief of staff to Vice President Mike Pence.

In an interview with ABC News during the five-day trip to Ghana, Mali, Kenya and Egypt last month, the first lady said there are people in the White House whom she and the president can not trust. The newspaper said Trump has told aides he wants her out of her role as soon as possible.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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