Reince Priebus Confirmed As Trump's Chief Of Staff; Bannon Becomes Chief Strategist

Update: Donald Trump has confirmed Reince Priebus will be his Chief of Staff and Stephen Bannon will serve as Trump's Chief Strategist.

*  *  *

As we detailed earlier, after an early rumor, likely meant to serve as a trial balloon to gauge the broader reaction, that Trump's campaign CEO, Breitbart's Steve Bannon was set to become the president-elect's Chief of Staff, moments ago Politico's Marc Caputo reported that RNC Chairman "Reince Priebus will be chief of staff, source who spoke to Trump tells me. Announcement could come in the next half hour."


Trump Senior Advisory Kellyanne Conway said this Saturday on Trump’s Chief of Staff announcement: “It is imminent. Imminent means coming soon and perhaps Mr. Trump is up there making a lot of important decisions, taking accounts of a lot of important people. I think he can’t go wrong with the decision.”

As FOX added, Conway did not provide further details on timing in speaking to reporters at Trump Tower in Manhattan. She mentioned Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus was interested in the job, but said there are “several people being considered” and that it was “Mr. Trump’s decision ultimately. "When asked Saturday when Trump’s next public event will be, Conway said “in the next couple of days.”

House Speaker Paul Ryan and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell have urged Trump to pick Priebus, telling Trump they believed the RNC chairman is the right choice and the best fit for the position, a source told CNN on Friday.

Trump’s son-in-law and trusted adviser, Jared Kushner, has also said privately he is supportive of Priebus.

While Priebus is more tied to the Washington establishment - and will likely provoke questions whether Trump is really "draining the swamp" or just replacing one swamp with another - Bannon is said to be the more controversial choice, As the head of Brietbart News, Bannon is seen as the face of the alt-right movement that helped propel Trump to the presidency and was behind some of Trump’s most controversial moments on the campaign trail. However, he has gained the trust of Trump and been a constant figure on the campaign since he joined the team in August.

No position is considered more important than chief of staff, a behind-the-scenes power player who typically controls access to the president, guides the enactment of his policy priorities and oversees White House hiring.