ABOARDAIRFORCEONE (Reuters) – U.S. President Donald Trump said on Tuesday that the candidates he is considering to become his new national security adviser include former deputy national security adviser Ricky Waddell, Vice President Mike Pence’s security aide Keith Kellogg, and hostage negotiator Robert O’Brien.
Speaking to reporters aboard Air Force One, Trump said the other possible successors to John Bolton, the hawkish national security adviser he fired last week, were Fred Fleitz, a former CIA analyst and one-time aide to Bolton, and Lisa Gordon-Hagerty, Under Secretary for Nuclear Security of the U.S. Department of Energy.
The list shows that Trump is considering familiar faces within his administration. Waddell was deputy White House national security adviser for a year when retired General H.R. McMaster had the top job, while Kellogg was executive secretary of the National Security Council until Bolton took over the office 17 months ago. O’Brien has a long history in Republican foreign policy circles.
Fleitz, meanwhile, has a long history with Bolton, who was abruptly fired over his handling of North Korea and Venezuela. Fleitz served as his chief of staff both on the security council and when Bolton was an official in the State Department under former President George W. Bush.
(Reporting by Jeff Mason, writing by Matt Spetalnick and Lisa Lambert; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama and Rosalba O’Brien)