As Trump Denies Election Loss Reality, Aides Are Moving On

Donald Trump continues to act as if he has a shot at reversing the results of the Nov. 3 election to give himself a second term as president. But White House aides and senior administration officials are dealing with reality and making plans for their post-Jan. 20 lives, even though they can’t bring themselves to utter the phrase “President-elect Joe Biden” in public.

Attorney General William Barr announced last week that he’s leaving before Christmas so that he can spend time with his family. Vice President Mike Pence is said to be house hunting in the suburbs of Washington, D.C. and a moving van has been on site for a couple of weeks at the Naval Observatory residence where he’s lived for the past four years. Chief of Staff Mark Meadows is talking with other White House aides about opening up a consulting firm.

The Washington Post reports that the current and future White House bears all of the attributes of a presidential administration that’s winding down: staffers looking for new jobs, friends begging for last-minute favors, West Wing tours, White House photos for their Christmas cards, one last meal in the White House mess.

“People are asking for everything. They are all trying to get their last lick of the ice cream cone,” one senior administration official told the Post. “Everyone wants something.”

The many White House aides that are in full job search mode are trying to do so under the radar for fear of angering Trump. In November they were warned by personnel director Johnny McEntee that they would be fired if it became apparent they were looking post-Trump White House employment before Jan. 20.

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