ChrisWeigant.com

Kelly Exit Contest!

[ Posted Tuesday, August 15th, 2017 – 15:05 UTC ]

While I just finished watching President Donald Trump's rather extraordinary press conference today, it is going to take some time for me to process it before writing about it. So perhaps I'll get to it tomorrow, but for today I thought it was time for some light-hearted political fun. In short: a contest!

We haven't had one of these for awhile, but at this point I think everyone could use a distraction. The contest's rules are simple: pick the day when General John Kelly will exit his job as White House chief of staff. Bonus points are possible if you correctly pick the method of his exit (fired in a Trump rage, got so disgusted he had to go, caught in a compromising position with Russians/prostitutes/Ryan Lizza, etc.).

Kelly, of course, was brought in to institute some order on the chaos that is the Trump White House. He was merely the most recent "adult in the room" who was supposed to save the country from Trump's worst impulses.

So far, the record has been decidedly mixed. Kelly got rid of Anthony "The Mooch" Scaramucci, which was definitely a point in his favor. But the exits of Sean Spicer and Reince Priebus would have to be weighed against Mooch's firing. Kelly has had limited success in toning down Trump's Twitter habit, as can plainly be seen just about any day of the week. He is reportedly pushing hard for Trump to get rid of Steve Bannon, but we'll have to wait and see if those are just rumors or not (or perhaps just wishful thinking).

Kelly has reportedly been cracking the whip behind the scenes, limiting access to the Oval Office to pre-approved people with pre-approved messages to the president. This is all to the good, but is really nothing more than "the chief of staff's main responsibility," so it's hard to heap too much praise on Kelly for doing what any decent chief of staff is supposed to do -- retaining the "gatekeeper" function of the office.

Kelly was also supposed to stop all the rampant leaking within the White House, and again his record in this respect is rather mixed. The flood of leaks hasn't exactly slowed to a trickle, but it has been reduced somewhat. So the jury's still out on that one.

So far, Kelly has been adamant that he's not in the job to "change Trump" but rather to let Trump be Trump -- just without some of the infighting in the ranks in the West Wing. Sooner or later, though, this may catch up to him. Kelly appears to be a man with some integrity and dignity, so it's hard to say how much of Trump's undignified behavior he'll put up with before deciding he's had enough and just can't do the job anymore.

Alternatively, at some point Kelly could take a stance on some issue that Trump refuses to agree with. I have no idea what issue this could turn out to be, but it really could be almost anything (going from Trump's past record). Trump is fully capable of firing Kelly for perceived "disloyalty," in other words.

Being second in command to Trump is a rough job, that much is for sure. This is evidenced more than anything else by how quickly people rotate in and out of this position. I can't even recall how many campaign managers Trump burned through last year, and Reince Priebus only last six months as Trump's first chief of staff.

So how long will General John Kelly last as White House chief of staff? I'll start the ball rolling with my own guesstimate. Originally I thought "about three months is probably right," and then I looked at a calendar. So my entry in the "name the date Kelly exits" contest is November 12, 2017. A week after this year's election, in other words. Now, this is an off-off-year election, but two important governorships will be in the mix (New Jersey and Virginia). If Democrats win in both, Trump could throw a major tantrum as a result. By this point in time, it could become obvious that the Republican Congress is incapable (or unwilling) to pass much of anything on Trump's political agenda, giving Trump even more reasons to lash out. Furthermore, I predict that Kelly will resign rather than be fired, although he's enough of a class act to put forward some sort of "stepping down for personal reasons" statement, rather than airing the real dirty laundry of his disagreement with Trump in public.

So, that's my guess: "11/12/17, resigns with benign statement." I encourage everyone else to post your entries in the comments below. The winner will be whomever picks the closest date to Kelly's eventual exit, to be announced after it happens. Prize is, unfortunately, merely bragging rights here in the comments. When (and how) will Kelly leave? Place your marker on a date, and good luck to all entrants!

-- Chris Weigant

 

Follow Chris on Twitter: @ChrisWeigant

 

28 Comments on “Kelly Exit Contest!”

  1. [1] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    OK, folks, one big ground rule for this comment thread: NO unrelated comments!

    No posting articles about this or that or ranting about any issue OTHER than Kelly's tenure.

    I am going to have to re-read all of these comments later, whenever Kelly leaves, so I am trying to make that as easy on myself as possible. So please, ONLY post your entries here. If you have other issues, post comments on yesterday's article or tomorrow's (yes, Michale, I am definitely looking in your direction...).

    Let's keep this comment thread clean. It'll make announcing a winner later SO much easier!

    Thanks to all in advance for following this simple rule for this comment thread. Hmmph.

    -CW

  2. [2] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    1/20/18

    i think he lasts longer than most people think he will.

  3. [3] 
    ListenWhenYouHear wrote:

    I give him until Oct. 1, 2017, and he will leave after he is no longer able to stomach serving under such a dishonorable and corrupt president.

  4. [4] 
    TheStig wrote:

    I'm in. Next Monday. No particular reason, it's just Total Eclipse Day. Kelly is looking grim outside Trump Tower this pm. Kelly won't get axed, he'll resign in disgust...

  5. [5] 
    Paula wrote:

    I originally gave him three months but everything DT is accelerated.

    My guess is August 25th - ten days.

    Kelly will give Blotus some kind of ultimatum. Blotus will agree then crap all over it within hours? a day or two? Kelly will realize DT is un-everything, will have a bunch of quiet meetings will lots of people on the Hill, and will resign. My question is whether he'll spill anything publicly, or simply say he isn't the right person for the job (there is none) or something similar.

  6. [6] 
    neilm wrote:

    8/1/18

    Reason: Kelly will resign, using "personal issues" as an excuse after completing a "respectable" length of time in the role. There will be frequent rumors that 45 will fire him but in the end 45 won't have the cojones. By this time his role will be symbolic as all normal CoS power will have been undermined by 45, his family and some of the weird cronies.

  7. [7] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Jan. 20,2021.
    Unless President Pence fires him before that.

  8. [8] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    I sincerely don't care. It's not as if he's actually somebody we should expect to behave with honor or ethics. He's a high level member of the Twitter Troll administration by choice. He was not conscripted by this pack of Russian collaborators and grifters.

    How long until Ben Carson appears at one of the orange troll's seething Klan rallies to defend the Dear Leader and his pack of Nazis?

  9. [9] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    I don't like contests.

  10. [10] 
    BigGuy wrote:

    4/1/18 - Jared and Ivanka, after being hip checked into the boards outside the Oval Office one too many times, form an uneasy alliance with the alt-right troika to start a smear campaign against General Kelly. It seems the general has an autographed 8 X 10 of Alec Baldwin on his mantle.

    Guy

  11. [11] 
    John M from Ct. wrote:

    October 20, 2017. Just putting out a date. I agree he won't last, but I don't see how anyone can predict this administration's future course.

  12. [12] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Exactly.

  13. [13] 
    altohone wrote:

    Hey CW

    I prefer contests with prizes... no Netroots hat or something?

    Anyway, I'll go with October 31st, 2017... heart attack in the middle of the argument that would have led to his resignation.

    A

  14. [14] 
    Michale wrote:

    s (yes, Michale, I am definitely looking in your direction...).

    Yea... Like I'M the only one guilty of that.. :^/

  15. [15] 
    Kick wrote:

    I believe General Kelly will remain White House Chief of Staff until the day either Trump goes or it is discovered that Kelly is part of that which the Bannonites refer to as "the deep state."

    I believe Kelly is there for a reason, and I think he will remain there until that reason is removed or Kelly is exposed. Kelly is no different than McMaster and Mattis; they are patriots all as well as canaries in the coal mine. They've spent decades serving their country... NOT those who come in and out of the revolving doors at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

    The primary leaker in the White House is Steve Bannon; he talks to others, and they talk to the press. Bannon is a bird on borrowed time. The leaking won't stop until he goes, and Trump can release him because he knows too much.

  16. [16] 
    Kick wrote:

    A01

    Anyway, I'll go with October 31st, 2017... heart attack in the middle of the argument that would have led to his resignation.

    Trick or Treat...... Punk. ;)

  17. [17] 
    Kick wrote:

    EDIT to [15]

    The primary leaker in the White House is Steve Bannon; he talks to others, and they talk to the press. Bannon is a bird on borrowed time; the leaking won't stop until he goes, and Trump can't release him because he knows too much.

  18. [18] 
    Michale wrote:

    EDIT to [15]

    The primary leaker in the White House is Steve Bannon; he talks to others, and they talk to the press. Bannon is a bird on borrowed time; the leaking won't stop until he goes, and Trump can't release him because he knows too much.

    Yea....

    MICHALE is the ONLY one who goes off topic... :^/

  19. [19] 
    Balthasar wrote:

    Christmas can be very stressful for the whole family, particularly when there are Tax Cuts and Debt Ceilings to consider. I say the fallout strikes January 6, 2018, by resignation.

  20. [20] 
    Kick wrote:

    CW: Bonus points are possible if you correctly pick the method of his exit (fired in a Trump rage, got so disgusted he had to go, caught in a compromising position with Russians/prostitutes/Ryan Lizza, etc.)

    CW: Kelly was also supposed to stop all the rampant leaking within the White House, and again his record in this respect is rather mixed. The flood of leaks hasn't exactly slowed to a trickle, but it has been reduced somewhat. So the jury's still out on that one.

    I posted my statement about Bannon being the White House leaker because I believe it is unfair to judge General Kelly's tenure as Chief of Staff for the leaks and to underscore that the leaking won't stop as long as Bannon remains in the White House. As I said, the Generals are the proverbial canaries in the coal mine... the patriots... any one of their departures should sound the alarms that life in the Trump administration has become untenable, and Kelly is the one closest to ground zero where Bannon is gunning for them all.

    Apologies if idiots can't grasp the concept that Bannon will be gunning for Kelly in the same manner as Bannon and the alt-right are going after McMaster and that Bannon might prove a huge factor in Kelly's tenure.

    I forgot to put a date on it: May 11, 2018.

  21. [21] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    entries so far:

    thestig: 8/21/17

    paula: 8/25/17

    listen: 10/1/17

    JM from Ct: 10/20/17

    altohone: 10/31/17

    balthasar: 1/6/18

    nypoet22: 1/20/18

    BigGuy: 4/1/18

    kick: 5/11/18

    neil: 8/1/18

    Don: 1/20/21

    liz & JFC: abstain

    i tried to do this chronologically. feel free to correct if i've left anyone out. - JL

  22. [22] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    altohone [13] -

    Um, how about 1,000 Quatloos?

    No?

    OK... OK... gotta go dig in the NRN schwag bag...

    Aha! Here we go!

    The winner of this contest will receive in the mail a fantastic bumpersticker from Democracy For America with the following message:

    UNFIT TO SERVE
    IMPEACH TRUMP

    It's in bold red-white-and-blue format, and is well designed -- you could slap this on your bumper and I could read it two or three car lengths back.

    So... there you go. Ask, and ye shall receive, and all of that. I'll try to get a photo of it up later...

    :-)

    -CW

  23. [23] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    nypoet22 [21] -

    You left one out...

    thestig: 8/21/17
    paula: 8/25/17
    listen: 10/1/17
    JM from Ct: 10/20/17
    altohone: 10/31/17
    CW: 11/12/17
    balthasar: 1/6/18
    nypoet22: 1/20/18
    BigGuy: 4/1/18
    kick: 5/11/18
    neil: 8/1/18
    Don: 1/20/21
    liz & JFC: abstain

    There you go! Fixed it!

    :-)

    -CW

  24. [24] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    TheStig [4] -

    Gotta ask. I had someone offline (these people are NOT part of the official contest, I should mention) also pick eclipse day.

    So... before, during or after the eclipse?

    Heh.

    Went up to Great Smoky Mountain National Park before NRN started, and they're pretty excited because they are smack dab in the totality path. Reservations will be required for the parking lot at Clingman's Dome (highest point in Tenn.). Also heard Charleston, SC is going to have a lot of folks up on rooftop bars that day... it'll be the final point on the US mainland to see totality.

    -CW

  25. [25] 
    altohone wrote:

    Hey CW

    Wow.
    I wasn't expecting a response there.
    But glad I asked.

    Kick
    16

    It was a frightful prediction... so the date was easy to choose.

    A

  26. [26] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    altohone -

    It was a perfect time and a perfect suggestion, as I was unpacking all the NRN stuff. Here's a photo of the prize:

    Bumpersticker prize

    Good luck to all!

    -CW

  27. [27] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    Still no guess from Michale.
    Come on, Michale.
    I really want you to win the bumper sticker for your car.

  28. [28] 
    TheStig wrote:

    CW-24

    Before, during, after?

    That's a bit of a problem, since all three vary with your precise viewing location. The totality zone passes across the US in 95 min.

    Before the eclipse if Kelly resigns, I'll commit to that. During or after if Kelly is pushed.

    I have eye protection, but I'm winging it with respect to where I view the eclipse. Hotel accommodations in the totality zone are booked up and some people I know WITH RESERVATIONS have had their prices jacked up.

    My plan is to assess the weather reports on Sunday. If the cloud cover looks good I drive 5hr to Paducah KY arriving early in the AM to one of several big box stores with parking lots. I'm reviewing satellite imaging for backup sites 50 miles up and down state rt road. I'm told it's going to be a zoo, rural roads might be bad because KY is damn near optimal for time of totality by a wee bit. People are flocking from all over the world. Once I find parking, I wait, read a book, eat sandwiches until the eclipse begins. Marvel at the heavenly show or curse the cloud cover. I'm not staying long after totality. I've seen enough partials. Once the Bailey's beads are gone, so am I. Drive 5 hrs back home. Could be a long 5 hrs with a lot of muttering.

    Hey, it's a plan and a relatively cheap one. I didn't say it was a good one. The actual chances of viewing totality are mediocre at best - I figure 50% to 30%. If the odds look much worse on the day I just stay home and view a partial - if that isn't clouded over as well.

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