Neither party would comment on the issue, but this shows the level of intensity in the West Wing. It could be seen as a good thing or a bad thing. Thankfully no one got hurt.
WASHINGTON — An argument in February between White House chief of staff John F. Kelly and Corey Lewandowski, an informal adviser to President Trump, turned into a physical altercation that required Secret Service intervention just outside the Oval Office, according to a half-dozen people familiar with the events.
The episode, details of which have not been previously reported, is the latest illustration of the often chaotic atmosphere Trump is willing to tolerate in the White House as well as a reflection of the degree to which Kelly’s temper can be provoked.
The near brawl — during which Kelly grabbed Lewandowski by the collar and tried to have him ejected from the West Wing — came at a time when the chief of staff was facing uncertainty about how long Trump would keep him in his job. A guessing game over his departure has colored his tenure since.
Kelly, a retired four-star Marine Corps general, was widely hailed as the lone grown-up who could corral a staff full of bombastic and competing personalities when he was appointed in summer 2017. But Kelly has shown little inclination to curb his own instinct for confrontation, from scuffling with a Chinese official during a visit to Beijing in 2017 to last week’s profanity-laced shouting match with national security adviser John R. Bolton after a meeting with the president.