On Sunday night, three days before her scheduled appearance at the Republican National Convention, counselor to the president Kellyanne Conway announced that she would leave her White House role at the end of the month, citing her intention to focus on her family.
“Our four children are teens and ‘tweens starting a new academic year, in middle school and high school, remotely from home for at least a few months,” Conway wrote in a statement, adding, “This is completely my choice and my voice … For now, and for my beloved children, it will be less drama, more mama.”
The final manager of the 2016 Trump campaign — and the first woman to run a winning presidential bid — Conway has been a controversial advocate for her boss since the early days of the administration. Her use of the term “alternative facts” when discussing Trump’s inaccurate claims about his inaugural crowd size two days after he was sworn in set the tone not just for Conway’s combative relationship with the press, but for the White House’s general endorsement of misinformation in interviews and briefings.
Conway’s family matters have received much more public scrutiny than is typical for a presidential adviser, due to public comments from her husband, George Conway, critiquing President Trump. That dynamic has intensified since December, when Conway co-founded the Lincoln Project, a conservative PAC that has endorsed Joe Biden and produced ads that are clearly getting under the skin of their presidential target. More recently, their 15-year-old daughter, Claudia Conway, began posting frequent condemnations of the president and her mother. Shortly after Kellyanne’s announcement, her husband also announced that he would be “withdrawing” from the Lincoln Project to focus more on the family.