Less than three months into Donald Trump’s White House, top advisers are exploring organizational changes to stabilize an administration consumed by crisis and chaos.
Following the failure to advance health-care legislation, senior officials, including Vice President Mike Pence, chief of staff Reince Priebus, senior adviser Jared Kushner, chief strategist Steve Bannon, and chief economic adviser Gary Cohn gathered this week to hold post-mortems about what went wrong.
“Everybody,” said one official involved in the talks, “agreed to do it differently next time.”
In interviews over the last week, several senior aides said they were carefully examining how the beleaguered administration functions as they weigh possible fixes. Among the top concerns: The circular firing squad continually playing out in the press pitting top aides against one another — a dynamic that one senior adviser described as increasingly unsustainable.
“It will have to either stop or there will have to be decisions made,” this person said, hinting that more serious changes would be made if the incessant shooting doesn’t end.
The discussions provide a window into an embattled administration that is scrambling to find answers. It’s also an acknowledgment that the White House is not the “fine-tuned machine” that Trump has sought to portray.