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John Kelly nixed potential climate change debate

Chief of Staff John Kelly
White House chief of staff John Kelly. Photo: SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images

The White House nearly held a public debate over climate change until the idea was shut down by chief of staff John Kelly, the New York Times reports. EPA administrator Scott Pruitt reportedly championed the idea to the administration, and even gained the interest of President Trump — but it was abandoned after aides determined it was politically risky.

Why it matters: The Trump administration's denial of climate has long been controversial, and a national debate regarding its effects could have triggered a major shift in strategy. [Go deeper: Tackling climate change when Trump won't talk about it.]