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Trump shown speaking on a monitor in the White House briefing room about the Capitol insurrection. Photo: Joshua Roberts/Getty Images

President Trump enjoys the fervent support of tens of millions of Americans. But his closest friends and paid White House officials — many of the Trumpiest Trumpers we know — are avoiding him like the plague.

Behind the scenes: The president's final days in office will be lonely ones. Some stalwart aides and confidants — after years of enduring the crazy and trying to modulate the chaos — have given up trying to communicate with him, considering him mentally unreachable.

After Congress certified President-elect Biden's victory, Trump declared in a statement tweeted at 3:49 a.m. by aide Dan Scavino: "Even though I totally disagree with the outcome of the election, and the facts bear me out, nevertheless there will be an orderly transition on January 20th."

  • The statement was the product of hours of efforts by aides trying to get him to grapple with reality.

Stephanie Grisham, the first lady’s chief of staff and a former White House press secretary, resigned.

  • Deputy national security adviser Matt Pottinger, social secretary Rickie Niceta and deputy press secretary Sarah Matthews also resigned, officials told AP.
  • Former chief of staff Mick Mulvaney, who later became special envoy to Northern Ireland, said he resigned Wednesday night: "I can’t do it. I can’t stay." (On Nov. 7, Mulvaney wrote a Wall Street Journal op-ed headlined: "If He Loses, Trump Will Concede Gracefully.")
  • More departures are expected. Mulvaney told CNBC: “Those who choose to stay, and I have talked with some of them, are choosing to stay because they’re worried the president might put someone worse in."

Trump banned Pence chief of staff Marc Short, among the last loyalists, from the White House yesterday.

  • Trump blames Short for the vice president's decision to follow the Constitution as he presided over the Electoral College certification session.

Go deeper: Republicans enabled Trump. Then, a few strangled him

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Go deeper

Off the Rails

Episode 5: The secret CIA plan

Photo illustration: Aïda Amer, Sarah Grillo/Axios. Photo: Zach Gibson/Getty Images

Beginning on election night 2020 and continuing through his final days in office, Donald Trump unraveled and dragged America with him, to the point that his followers sacked the U.S. Capitol with two weeks left in his term. This Axios series takes you inside the collapse of a president.

Episode 5: Trump vs. Gina — The president becomes increasingly rash and devises a plan to tamper with the nation's intelligence command.

In his final weeks in office, after losing the election to Joe Biden, President Donald Trump embarked on a vengeful exit strategy that included a hasty and ill-thought-out plan to jam up CIA Director Gina Haspel by firing her top deputy and replacing him with a protege of Republican Congressman Devin Nunes.

Off the Rails

Episode 6: Last stand in Georgia

Photo illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photo: Drew Angerer, Raymond Boyd/Getty Images

Beginning on election night 2020 and continuing through his final days in office, Donald Trump unraveled and dragged America with him, to the point that his followers sacked the U.S. Capitol with two weeks left in his term. Axios takes you inside the collapse of a president with a special series.

Episode 6: Georgia had not backed a Democratic presidential candidate since 1992 and Donald Trump's defeat in this Deep South stronghold, and his reaction to that loss, would help cost Republicans the U.S. Senate as well. Georgia was Trump's last stand.

On Air Force One, President Trump was in a mood. He had been clear he did not want to return to Georgia, and yet somehow he'd been conscripted into another rally on the night of Jan. 4.

Off the Rails

Episode 4: Trump turns on Barr

Photo illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios. Photos: Drew Angerer, Pool/Getty Images

Beginning on election night 2020 and continuing through his final days in office, Donald Trump unraveled and dragged America with him, to the point that his followers sacked the U.S. Capitol with two weeks left in his term. Axios takes you inside the collapse of a president with a special series.

Episode 4: Trump torches what is arguably the most consequential relationship in his Cabinet.

Attorney General Bill Barr stood behind a chair in the private dining room next to the Oval Office, looming over Donald Trump. The president sat at the head of the table. It was Dec. 1, nearly a month after the election, and Barr had some sharp advice to get off his chest. The president's theories about a stolen election, Barr told Trump, were "bullshit."

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