I think John Kelly will have more success than anyone before him with organizing and disciplining the White House, but I don’t think it will last either. It’ll depend on how much latitude he’s given by Trump to enforce consequences.
Although Kelly now has a mutual working alliance with H.R. McMaster, extreme ideologues like Bannon, Kushner, Miller, and Gorka are the core problem—aside from Trump himself, of course, who likes to rock the boat.
Interestingly, it has been reported Kelly and Bannon have a good relationship, so that might work in Kelly’s favor. He might also clash less because what he did while running DHS aligned with Trump’s agenda with no pushback.
Kelly does not seem to be in tune with nor have a desire to play political games, though, which is the Chief of Staff’s job. It’s one thing to work at DHS but entirely another to work at the epicenter of The Circus 24/7.
And the last time a military commander was named COS to right the ship of a sinking presidency was apparently under Nixon.
Kelly’s “counterpart” McMaster probably won’t last long either, and he’s a stabilizing force that could make Kelly’s job that much smoother.
Just as McMaster started cleaning house this week, the far-right media machine kicked into high gear to try to smear and oust him (Breitbart, Daily Caller, Fox News, alt-right online activists Cernovich and Posobiec, etc.) If Trump can turn against Jeff Sessions, he’ll easily boot McMaster too, eventually.
On Wednesday 8/3/17, a select group of Russian-linked social media accounts started ramping up the “FireMcMaster” & other related hashtags to get them to trend.