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By Jonathan Allen

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina — President Donald Trump landed here Thursday night with special counsel Robert Mueller looming over his shoulder back home and President Xi Jinping of China on his horizon.

The trick for him, as he celebrates the signing of a new trade agreement with Mexico and Canada Friday and negotiates over his trade war with China Saturday, is to prevent his domestic troubles from damaging American foreign policy interests as the G-20 meets here.

Rep. Gerry Connolly, D-Va., a member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, said that the “dark cloud” of the Mueller probe could affect not only Trump’s “state of mind” and ability to deal with foreign leaders but his counterparts’ approach toward him.

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Kelly departure as White House chief of staff now imminent

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By Carol E. Lee, Kristen Welker, Hallie Jackson and Dartunorro Clark

WASHINGTON — White House Chief of Staff John Kelly’s long-expected departure will likely occur in the days ahead, four sources tell NBC News.

His tenure has been marred by controversy and conflict since he became chief of staff in the summer of last year, amid reports of disagreements with the president and West Wing staff. Recent clashes with first lady Melania Trump made his already tenuous position even more so, NBC News reported last month.

Kelly was tapped by Trump as chief of staff in July 2017 after his predecessor, Reince Priebus, was ousted following six months on the job.

Kelly previously served as Trump’s secretary of homeland security and is a retired four-star Marine general who served in the military for more than four decades, making him one of the nation’s longest-serving commanders.

Kelly’s time in the West Wing has also been dogged by speculation that he is frustrated and exhausted by his job and the president’s mercurial temperament — and that the president has at times been angry and vented his own frustrations about Kelly.

Among the leading candidates to replace him is Vice President Mike Pence’s chief of staff, Nick Ayers.

Carol E. Lee, Kristen Welker, and Hallie Jackson reported from Washington, and Dartunorro Clark reported from New York.



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Trump says he will nominate William Barr for attorney general

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By Daniel Barnes

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump announced Friday that he plans to nominate William Barr for attorney general, and confirmed that former Fox News anchor Heather Nauert as his pick to replace Nikki Haley as U.N. ambassador.

“He was my first choice from day one,” Trump said of Barr, calling him a “highly respected lawyer” and “one of the most respected jurists in the country.”

If confirmed by the Senate, it would be Barr’s second stint as head of the Justice Department. He served as attorney general from 1991 to 1993 under the late former President George H.W. Bush.

“Hopefully that process will go very quickly,” Trump said of Senate confirmation. “I think he will serve with great distinction.”

Barr would succeed former attorney general Jeff Sessions, who resigned under pressure in November.

Trump’s choice of Nauert to replace Haley had been previously reported by NBC News.

“She’s very talented, very smart, very quick and I think she’s going to be respected by all,” Trump said of Nauert.

The president also teased a third personnel decision to be announced tomorrow as he attends the Army-Navy game in Philadelphia.

“I can give you a little hint — it will have to do with the joint chiefs of staff and succession,” Trump said.

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DUP vows to snub any attempt to oust the PM

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THE DEMOCRATIC Unionist Party said yesterday it will not join any attempt to topple Theresa May as Prime Minister next week if her Brexit deal is voted down in the House of Commons.

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