Priebus counsels White House staff to ignore ‘distractions’

Former White House chief of staff Reince PriebusReinhold (Reince) Richard PriebusRepublican Party chief to serve second term at Trump’s request Priebus: Republican voters energized by 'Kavanaugh effect' Kelly called Warren 'impolite,' 'arrogant:' report MORE during an interview on Sunday counseled Trump administration staffers to ignore “distractions” after a week of upheaval.

“I think what the staff has to do is focus in on the results,” Priebus said on ABC’s “This Week.”

“I think what the president does is, and he writes about it even in his own books, is he puts rivals around him intellectually," he said. "You have people like [Commerce Secretary] Wilbur RossWilbur Louis RossSessions attacks judge who ordered officials to sit for depositions in challenges to Census citizenship question Harris accuses GOP of ‘weaponizing’ 2020 Census DOJ: Commerce chief spoke with Bannon, Sessions about census citizenship question MORE … and [National Economic Council Director] Gary Cohn. And he puts those two guys in front of him and says, ‘OK, fight out tariffs in front of me.' "

"And they fight it out, and the media covers the fight. But, ultimately, the decision is made," he added. 


"Look at the economy, look at [the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria], look at the courts," Priebus, the former chairman of the Republican National Committee, said. "The decisions and the things that President TrumpDonald John TrumpThe Guardian slams Trump over comments about assault on reporter Five takeaways from the first North Dakota Senate debate Watchdog org: Tillerson used million in taxpayer funds to fly throughout US MORE has done have put him on a great course. If you’re a Republican, you couldn’t be happier."

His comments follow a week during which White House communications director Hope HicksHope Charlotte HicksTrump: 'I don't call it tweeting. I call it social media' The Hill's Morning Report — Presented by PhRMA — Trump heads to battleground Iowa, where GOP House members seek help Hope Hicks to become Fox chief communications officer MORE announced her departure; damaging stories about senior adviser Jared KushnerJared Corey KushnerThe Memo: Saudi storm darkens for Trump Saudi Arabia mulls blaming top intel officer over Khashoggi disappearance: report Mnuchin pulls out of Saudi conference MORE were published; President Trump announced new tariffs on steel and aluminum, pitting key aides against one another; and the president’s tone vacillated on gun control.

Trump also targeted Attorney General Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsRosenstein to appear for House interview next week Emmet Flood steps in as White House counsel following McGahn departure McGahn departs as White House counsel MORE on Twitter, and the White House had to deny reports that national security adviser H.R. McMaster and Cohn planned to leave the administration.