- The Washington Times - Friday, December 16, 2016

After weeks of an increasingly acrimonious transition, President Obama’s chief of staff hosted President-elect Donald Trump’s incoming chief of staff, Reince Priebus, at the White House Friday in a public show of cooperation.

Mr. Priebus smiled for cameras and told Obama chief of Staff Denis McDonough, “Thanks for having me. It’s great.”

When journalists asked Mr. Priebus how it felt to be in the White House, Mr. McDonough cut in and replied, “It feels good to have him here.”

A White House official speaking on background said the lunch meeting was “part of the president’s directive for a smooth transition to the next administration.”

The transfer of power from the Obama administration to the incoming Trump administration has grown increasingly rocky, escalating into accusations this week from the White House that Mr. Trump and his team had insider knowledge of Russia’s hacking into the U.S. election to damage Hillary Clinton’s candidacy. Mr. Trump has vehemently rejected the charges and called Mr. Obama’s spokesman “foolish.”

Also attending the meeting were Andy Card (former chief of staff of President George W. Bush); Rahm Emanuel, Bill Daley and Pete Rouse, who served previously as Mr. Obama’s top advisers; Treasury Secretary Jack Lew; former Clinton White House chief of staff John Podesta, whose emails were allegedly hacked by the Russians; and top aides to former presidents George H.W. Bush, Ronald Reagan and Jimmy Carter.

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