White House counselor Kellyanne Conway told Fox News host Bill Hemmer on Wednesday that new White House chief of staff John Kelly has closed the door to the Oval Office.
Last Friday, Reince Priebus was replaced by Secretary of Homeland Security John Kelly as the new chief of staff for President Donald Trump. Many assumed the retired four-star Marine general was brought in as a way to bring order to a chaotic White House. On his first official day, Kelly ousted newly hired communications director Anthony Scaramucci and is reported to have controlled access to Trump.
Hemmer asked Conway how things have changed in the West Wing since Kelly has taken over.
Conway said Kelly has closed the door to the Oval Office.
"I believe that General Kelly obviously commands a great deal of respect, if not deference, and he shows respect. He is somebody who wants to empower his staff to succeed," Conway said. "He closed the door to the Oval Office."
Conway later added that she approved of the decision.
"I applaud that. I'm a big protocol and pecking order kind of gal. This is a good thing," Conway said.
Hemmer asked Conway to explain to viewers what "closing the door to the Oval Office means."
"He has closed the door to the Oval Office. What does that mean in the context?" Hemmer asked.
Conway explained that Trump has empowered Kelly to focus on bringing order to the White House staff.
"He will run the White House as he would like to, but he has empowered General Kelly as the chief of staff to focus on the staff as well, and to be with the president for a number of critical meetings and conversations," Conway said. "I think the chief of staff and the president should have a very unique, very close relationship in terms of what they discuss and then how it flows down to and back up from the staff."
Conway added that Kelly brings valuable experience to the position.
"This man is a public servant of nearly five decades, and with that comes a great deal of experience with personnel, with managing and leading, but he understands Capitol Hill and he worked the Hill before: he just came from the Cabinet. He knows some of the most important people in the administration, the Cabinet members," Conway said.