White House chief of staff John Kelly, who will depart President Donald Trump's administration on Wednesday, told The Los Angeles Times in an extensive interview published Sunday that the president never ordered him to do anything illegal and added that the proposed border wall at the center of the government shutdown fight is not as it has been portrayed.
Kelly, set to be replaced by Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney, who will serve as acting chief of staff, said he made sure the president had access to detailed information prior to making decisions, even though the president says publicly that he goes with his gut instinct, NBC News reported.
"It’s never been: The president just wants to make a decision based on no knowledge and ignorance,” Kelly said. “You may not like his decision, but at least he was fully informed on the impact."
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The retired Marine general said Trump often pressed him on his legal authority to do certain actions, asking, "Why can't we do [something] this way?" Kelly added that he was not ordered to carry out any illegal action "because we wouldn't have."