Trump’s Staff Secretary Lyons to Leave White House This Month

One of President Donald Trump’s closest aides, staff secretary Derek Lyons, will leave his job before the end of the year.

Lyons plans to depart the White House before his boss’s term ends in January in order to spend time with his family and pursue a private sector opportunity related to jobs in the U.S., according to a person familiar with the matter. He informed Trump of his decision on Tuesday, the person said.

Lyons called his time in the administration “the experience of a lifetime” in a statement to Bloomberg News.

Few of Trump’s top advisers have left their posts, with the president still insisting -- falsely -- that he won re-election. Departures before President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration are interpreted as implicit acknowledgment that Trump’s time in the White House is coming to an end.

Alyssa Farah resigned earlier this month as White House communications director, one of the only other high-level officials to leave since the election. Attorney General William Barr said Monday he’ll leave by Dec. 23 after Trump complained about the Department of Justice’s handling of his unsubstantiated vote fraud assertions and an investigation of Biden’s son Hunter Biden.

“It has been an honor and a privilege to work for President Trump in the White House and fight for the American people alongside truly talented and dedicated colleagues,” Lyons said in his statement. “I am deeply grateful to the president for the opportunity to serve.”

As staff secretary, Lyons held the unheralded but influential position of handling the flow of documents to Trump and coordinating the president’s official remarks, major addresses and policy initiatives. He took over the position in 2018 from Rob Porter, who resigned after he was accused of domestic violence. Lyons previously served as Porter’s deputy.

Lyons is one of a handful of remaining staffers who have been in the White House since the first day of Trump’s presidency. He frequently accompanied the president on foreign and domestic travel, and in May received the title of counselor to the president, which gave him an expanded portfolio. He advised Trump on policy matters ranging from trade and coronavirus relief efforts to deregulation and homeland security issues.

Before entering the White House, Lyons worked on the 2016 presidential campaign of Jeb Bush -- a frequent punching bag of Trump’s -- and for Senator Rob Portman of Ohio as chief counsel on the Senate investigations subcommittee. Lyons is an lawyer who clerked for Brett Kavanaugh when he was a judge on the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia.

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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