Kelly moves Navarro’s trade office under Cohn, report

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White House chief of staff John Kelly is bringing more change to the West Wing, rolling Peter Navarro’s trade office into the National Economic Council.

Navarro, who heads up the Office of Trade and Manufacturing Policy, will report to National Economic Council Director Gary Cohn in a move aimed at reining in the policy shop, Politico first reported on Wednesday.

What the change might do to Navarro’s ability to influence President Trump remains to be seen. 

{mosads}”I’m a chain of command guy and will follow Chief Kelly’s orders,” Navarro told Politico in a statement.

“The chief has assured me I will continue to have the same seat and voice at the president’s decision-making table.”

Kelly reportedly made the decision on Tuesday.

Cohn and Navarro have frequently clashed over the direction of Trump’s trade policy.

Navarro, a Harvard-educated economist with nationalist views, is well-known for his hard-line approach against China, which melded well with Trump’s harsh rhetoric directed toward Beijing during his presidential campaign.

Cohn has been a steady hand in trying to keep the president on track in opening trade instead of pursuing protectionist policies that would shut off the United States from the global trading system. 

For months, there has been growing concern within the White House that Navarro’s trade strategies could lead to a global trade war with nations like China. 

Trump brought Navarro into the administration to head up the newly created National Trade Council but later put him in charge of the Office of Trade and Manufacturing Policy.

Tags Donald Trump John Kelly National Economic Council Office of Trade and Manufacturing Policy
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