Transcript for Trump aide resigns amid domestic-abuse allegations
We start out with the firestorm in the white house. One of president trump's top aides has resigned after two ex-wives have come forward with abuse allegations. Staff secretary rob porter is denying their claims and now big questions. Why was he allowed to take and keep this job? Cecilia Vega has the latest. Reporter: George, good morning to you. So many new questions and very burning questions for this white house this morning. Just how long did this west wing know about these allegations facing one of president trump's top aides? White house sources tell ABC news high-level aides have known about the domestic violence accusations against staff secretary rob porter for months, all the while porter playing a prominent role in the west wing. But those sources say aides were not aware of the extent of the accusations until porter's two ex-wives told their stories to "The daily mail" and online publication the intercept. Colbie Holderness releasing a photo of her plaque and blue eisaiing porter punched her in the face more than a decade ago. And overnight his second wife, Jennie Willoughby telling "The Washington post" this story of how porter allegedly attacked her in the shower just after their first anniversary. He came and grabbed me by the shoulders here and pulled me out of the shower in a rage and immedia immediately on seeing the terror in my face retracted and apologized. Reporter: Porter resigning abruptly saying in a statement these outrage allegations are simply false. I took the photos and the reality behind them is nowhere close to what is being described. I have been transparent and truthful about these vile claims. The white house says no one forced porter out. I think that was a personal decision that rob made and one that he was not pressured to do but one that he made on his own. Reporter: He is also romantically linked to hope hicks, the couple recently spotted together out on the town in this dailymail.com photo. When the story broke chief of staff John Kelly called porter a man of true integrity and honor. Overnight Kelly issued a second statement now saying he was shocked by the allegations that there is no place for domestic abuse and I believe every individual deserves the right to defend their reputation. Porter's ex-wives paint a disturbing picture. His first wife tells the intercept he would lay on top of me shaking me. He graduated to choking me, not ever hard enough to make me pass out or frankly to leave marks but it was frightening and dehumanizing. His second wife tells ABC news she wrote this blog post about her four-year marriage to porter saying the first time he called me an expletive was on our honeymoon. In 2010 she filed for an emergency protective order against porter telling authorities he punched in the glass on the door. I called the police afraid he would break in. Does the president have he concerns about these domestic violence allegations raised against rob porter? I haven't spoken to him about specific concerns. You haven't talked to the president about this? About whether or not he has specific concerns, I haven't asked him that question, Cecilia. Has he seen the photos of rob porter's ex-wife with the black eye? I don't know. Reporter: We don't know whether the president has seen those photos. They have been in the media. It would be hard to imagine he has not. They said rob porter would stay on the job in order to oversee a smooth transition. I am now told there is a renewed sense of urgency to get him out of this job. It sounds like he will be leaving much sooner than expected. Cecilia, credible allegations like this are usually disqualifying for a top white house job using security clearances not only because they're horrific but because they make them vulnerable to blackmail but the white house is having a very hard time explaining when they got this information, what they did with it, why rob porter was allowed to remain in this job. Reporter: Let's not forget this is a white house that's had a tough time answering a lot of questions about relationships with women over the last year here, of course, you saw Sarah Sanders really struggling to answer some of these questions. That certainly will continue on today. One of the big questions has to do with general Kelly, the chief of staff, he has repeatedly now praised a man accused of beating his wives multiple times, a lot of questions, George. So many. Thanks very much.
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