Trump economic advisor Shahira Knight to replace Marc Short as the director of legislative affairs

  • Two key officials in the White House's Office of Legislative Affairs will leave in July, as the administration gears up to confirm President Donald Trump's second nominee to the U.S. Supreme Court.
  • White House Legislative Director Marc Short will depart July 20, a White House official confirmed to CNBC.
  • Top White House economic advisor Shahira Knight will replace Short.
White House Director of Legislative Affairs Marc Short attends a briefing at the White House March 16, 2018 in Washington, DC. 
Brendan Smialowski | AFP | Getty Images
White House Director of Legislative Affairs Marc Short attends a briefing at the White House March 16, 2018 in Washington, DC. 

The leadership of the White House Office of Legislative Affairs is getting shaken up just as the administration gears up to confirm President Donald Trump's second nominee to the U.S. Supreme Court.

White House Legislative Director Marc Short will depart and be replaced by top economic advisor Shahira Knight, the White House said Thursday afternoon.

Knight previously served as deputy director of the National Economic Council and helped to usher the GOP tax bill through Congress last year.

Taking on the legislative affairs position is a change in plans for Knight, who said last month that she would leave the White House to join Clearing House, a lobbying group focused on banking. Knight worked as a lobbyist working primarily on tax issues for more than a decade before joining the Trump administration.

“Marc was an integral part of the White House staff. He and his team helped the President rebuild the military, pass historic tax reform and achieve unprecedented legislative successes," Chief of Staff John Kelly said in a statement. "We will miss his profound expertise, commitment to the taxpayers, and leadership.”

Another key official in the legislative affairs office, special assistant Andy Koenig, will also be leaving the White House. Koenig, whose departure has not been previously reported, will exit on Friday. He joined the White House in March of 2017.

There was discussion of Short staying on to help with the Supreme Court nomination effort, but he ultimately decided to resign after the White House Counsel's office pushed for a larger role in the process, a White House official told CNBC.

White House Counsel Donald McGahn has been instrumental in Trump's appointment of federal judges, and was the leading force pushing for the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh, who Trump announced Monday would be his nominee to the high court.

In a statement, Short said he would be "forever indebted" to Trump and Vice President Mike Pence.

Short faced a deadline to commit to his new teaching job at the University of Virginia, where he will teach courses in the business school and serve as a senior fellow at the university’s Miller Center. Short is also taking a position at the consulting firm Guidepost Strategies, according to POLITICO.