Several White House officials have expressed confusion over President Donald Trump’s conflicting remarks on the allegations made against his former staff secretary Rob Porter, who resigned last Wednesday after his two former spouses accused him of physical and verbal abuse.
Though a smattering of top aides appeared on television Sunday to defend the White House’s response to the situation, other officials were left wondering how the President can go from reportedly calling Porter “a sick puppy” in private to being defensive of him and dismissive of the allegations in public. Officials say they are left wondering where Trump truly stands on this issue.
The West Wing has been mired in turmoil since the allegations against Porter first surfaced, and aides are still unable to provide a consistent explanation as to which officials knew about the accusations and when.
CNN has reported that several senior administration officials, including chief of staff John Kelly, were aware of the allegations before they became public.
The President has contributed to the confusion with his differing remarks on Porter. Though White House counselor Kellyanne Conway said he was “disturbed” and legislative affairs director Marc Short maintained he was “saddened,” Trump has expressed a different sentiment publicly.