Kelly: 'We didn't cover ourselves with glory' on Rob Porter abuse allegations

04 March, 2018, 05:07 | Author: Charlene Valdez
  • White House Chief of Staff cracked jokes during his appearance at the 15th anniversary celebrations of the Department of Homeland Security celebration

Over a few hours that day, Kelly said, he had issued a statement in strong support of Porter after Porter's second former wife, Jennifer Willoughby, accused him of abuse.

Chief of Staff John Kelly told the press Friday that he has never considered resigning from the White House over the Rob Porter scandal.

Kelly told reporters Friday that he first learned about "red flags" about Porter on February 6 when a reporter asked Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders about allegations from his first ex-wife about a "messy divorce" and "some level of emotional abuse".

But he said the White House office tasked with handling clearance requests "still not had evaluated his package to make a recommendation one way or the other" about Porter. "It was just a shock to us all", Kelly said about Porter.

"I wish I had worked harder in the six months I had the job to. not only protect the men and women that get beat up so badly every day but to really advertise in a much more effective way how good you are", Kelly said.

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Kelly said he had started looking into who had clearances and any delays in granting permanent clearances last fall. Kelly said he asked Porter about that physical allegation that same night, and accepted Porter's resignation, some two hours after the photo hit the Internet.

Porter denies all of the allegations that he engaged in years of physical and verbal abuse.

Mr. Kelly said the statement went out before he had seen the photograph of Mr.

Asked about that first statement on Friday, Kelly said, "At that point in time, I thought that statement was accurate" with regard to his own dealings with the staff secretary.

But the president did not take the joke so well. That is disturbing", she said in an email, adding: "I had filed a protective order and called the police on several occasions and I detailed being pulled naked from the shower.

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For example, Kelly stood by his statement that Porter was "someone of the highest integrity and exemplary character" even after photos of the domestic abuse against Colbie Holderness was made public.

Then On Feb 8, Principal Deputy Press Secretary Raj Shah told reporters this: "His last day was yesterday".

The White House official also denied the charge that Mr Kelly prevented Mr Scaramucci from receiving an invitation to the Davos event.

Scaramucci is among a list of ousted staffers who left the executive branch "under adverse circumstances" and has been placed on an "administrative exclusion list", the White House told the news organization. But Kelly said he would take the blame. Porter resigned. Days ago, Jared Kushner, President Trump's son-in-law and a senior adviser, was stripped of his top-secret security clearance after months of delays in completing his background check.

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