New details about the bizarre day-to-day conflicts in the Trump White House have been revealed.

Former chief of staff John Kelly admitted to New York Times journalist Michael Schmidt that he often had to mediate fights between Melania, 52, and Ivanka Trump, 41, as the two women competed for influence.

Schmidt talked about his 2020 book Donald Trump v. The United States in a recent interview with MSNBC where he was asked about the claim that Donald Trump’s daughter, Ivanka, wanted to “perform the ceremonial duties and have the status of a First Lady.”


“John Kelly is probably as serious a national security figure as you can find, a four-star marine general,” Schmidt said. “He comes into the White House. He thinks he needs to put in structure and better staffing for Trump and all of a sudden he’s confronting far more frivolous issues like fights between the First Lady and Ivanka Trump. And Ivanka Trump trying to maneuver… to become the First Lady in the ceremonial ways.”

He lamented the frivolity of the issues that arose in the White House during those years. Schmidt continued to recount a story about when Kelly had to tell former aide Omarosa to stop throwing parties at the White House pool.

“So here’s John Kelly, concerned that we could be on the brink of war with North Korea, trying to mitigate these issues that are not as serious but were front and center in the Trump White House where things were off the rails.”

A new paperback version of Schmdit’s book, published this month, includes a lengthy biography of Kelly and his experience at the White House. In the new afterword, Schmidt also writes about Kelly recalling the former president’s attitude towards nuclear war.

“What scared Kelly even more than the tweets was that behind closed doors in the Oval Office, Trump continued to talk as if he wanted to go to war,” Schmidt writes. “He cavalierly discussed the idea of using a nuclear weapon against North Korea, saying that if he took such an action, the administration could blame someone else for it to absolve itself of responsibility.”

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