14:41 GMT16 July 2020
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    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - US President Donald Trump said on Thursday he has five people on his list of candidates to become his next chief of staff after John Kelly leaves the position.

    When asked how many people is he considering for the role, Trump said, "Five people, really good ones, terrific people, mostly well-known."

    The president told reporters the interviewing process was already underway, but he did not name any of the candidates, though media reports speculated that Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, and Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney are among the possible picks.

    Last Saturday, Trump announced that Kelly would be leaving the White House at the end of 2018. He did not offer a clear reason for the departure. Vice President Mike Pence's chief of staff Nick Ayers received a job offer from the president, but turned it down in favour of another opportunity with the Trump campaign in his home state of Georgia.

    READ MORE: Trump Announces Chief of Staff John Kelly Will Resign at End of Year

    Another possible candidate, Congressman Mark Meadows, said he would be honoured to fill the vacancy. Yet he ended up out of the race, because Trump wanted to see him in Congress. White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders said on Thursday Meadows was a great friend of the president and should continue doing effective work in the House of Representatives.

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    Tags:
    White House chief of staff, candidates, list, John Kelly, Donald Trump, United States
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