White House Staff Secretary Resigns Over Abuse Allegations

Rob Porter. Tom Williams  CQ Roll Call

If any other administration had such a high-level staffer accused of beating multiple women, it would have been a scandal that lasted for days or weeks.

Sanders also declined to discuss specifics about Porter's security clearance. Kelly, who encouraged Porter to remain in his post despite the allegations, did not alter his effusive statement.

"These outrageous allegations are simply false", he said in his statement. I took the photos given to the media almost 15 years ago. "I am deeply grateful for the opportunity to have served in the Trump Administration and will seek to ensure a smooth transition when I leave the White House", Porter's statement said.

Only a White House whose culture was established by having a serial sexual predator in the Oval Office would not only hire Rob Porter, but also promote him. Porter previously worked as the chief of staff to Sen. Prior to that, Porter had been the chief of staff to Republican Senator Orrin Hatch as well as working for Senators Rob Portman and Mike Lee.

Rob Porter will be out as early as Thursday, a senior White House official said Wednesday night, in another signal the West Wing is scrambling to contain the fallout over his continued employment even though officials were aware of the domestic abuse allegations against him.

Porter's second wife, Jennifer Willoughby, told the Daily Mail in the interview Tuesday he physically abused her by dragging her naked from the shower by her shoulders in an incident that occurred in December 2009.

DailyMail.com quoted Colbie Holderness as saying that Porter choked and punched her during their marriage. "He left visible marks when he punched me and I have pictures of that". "It was not hard enough for me to pass out, but it was scary, humiliating, and dehumanizing", she said.

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John Kelly, the White House chief of staff, publicly praised Porter after the abuse allegations emerged and reportedly kept him on even though the Federal Bureau of Investigation denied the staffer a security clearance. "He is a friend, a confidant and a trusted professional".

It's incredibly discouraging to see such a vile attack on such a decent man. Shame on any publication that would print this - and shame on the politically motivated, morally bankrupt character assassins that would attempt to sully a man's good name.

Asked what the president thought of the photos of Porter's bruised ex-wife, Sanders said she had not discussed it with him. "Domestic violence in any form is abhorrent and unacceptable".

The White House scrambled Tuesday, after the story was first published, and Wednesday to deal with the allegations.

The Intercept reported that the Federal Bureau of Investigation became aware of the allegations when conducting background checks for Porter's security clearance. Holderness provided photos of her facial injuries to the media.

"Background checks involve a complex investigation run by intelligence and law enforcement agencies".

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