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Nick Ayers won’t be Trump’s next chief of staff after all

WASHINGTON — Nick Ayers, the 36-year-old chief of staff to Vice President Mike Pence, will not be taking the chief of staff job at the White House, according to a report Sunday.

Ayers had long been discussed as the individual who would replace John Kelly, who will be leaving by the end of the year. President Trump broke the news himself, telling reporters about Kelly’s exit as he left for the Army-Navy game on Saturday.

But the Wall Street Journal is reporting that Ayers and Trump couldn’t agree on a time frame, with the veep’s top aide — who is the father of 6-year-old triplets — only able to commit for the first few months of next year. Trump decided he wanted someone in the job for longer.

The president’s next chief of staff will be his third in under two years.

The New York Times reported on Ayers’ trepidation Saturday, while also naming Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, budget director Mick Mulvaney and U.S. trade rep Robert Lighthizer as possible candidates.

Meanwhile, Axios reported Sunday that Rep. Mark Meadows (R-N.C.), who heads the conservative House Freedom Caucus, is also under consideration.

Lighthizer hinted he wasn’t interested in the job when appearing on “Face the Nation” Sunday.

“I haven’t spoken to anyone. I’m entirely focused on what I’m trying to do and … it’s difficult enough,” Lighthizer said.

Ayers, Axios reported, will run Trump’s outside group, America First, after leaving the administration.

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