John McEntee, former University of Connecticut quarterback and personal aide to President Trump, was fired and escorted from the White House on Tuesday.
Almost immediately after his firing, McEntee announced he will join Trump’s 2020 reelection campaign as a senior advisor for campaign operations, according to the Wall Street Journal.
The Secret Service is currently investigating McEntee for issues relating to online gambling and mishandling of taxes, according to the Wall Street Journal. McEntee was denied a security clearance after those issues surfaced.
CNN White House reporter Kaitlan Collins tweeted that she was told McEntee is also under investigation by the Department of Homeland Security for serious financial crimes.
White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders told the Wall Street Journal that the White House does not comment on personnel issues. McEntee did not return the Wall Street Journal’s request for comment.
McEntee was a near-constant presence in the West Wing and one of a select group of staffers whom Trump often summoned to the White House residence, according to CNN.
As personal aide, McEntee regularly traveled with the president and was scheduled to join Trump on his trip to California on Tuesday. McEntee would often arrange lodging, transportation and meals; he would also provide food, a cell phone and any other necessary assistance.
An anonymous senior administration official told the New York Times that several of Trump’s closest advisors are worried about the effects of McEntee’s departure on the president’s mood.
“The senior administration official said that the president has been in a ‘good place’ recently, but said that it is hard to overstate the effect of the departure, along with that of (former White House Communications Director Hope) Hicks. Both Mr. McEntee and Ms. Hicks have had offices just outside the Oval Office,” the New York Times reported.
McEntee had worked for Trump since the beginning of the president’s campaign, serving first as a volunteer before being promoted to campaign trip director, according to the New York Times. When Trump was elected, McEntee began serving as his personal aide.
McEntee was a sociology major at UConn and appeared in 15 football games between 2011 and 2012. He was the starting quarterback in every game in 2011 and received the Joseph M. Giannelli Unsung Hero Award that year.
Prior to working for Trump, McEntee was a production assistant at Fox News.
McEntee is originally from Fullerton, California, and attended Servite High School in Anaheim.