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Trump's New Chief Of Staff Called Him A 'Terrible Human Being' On Camera

That didn't take long.

On Saturday, US President Donald Trump named budget director Mick Mulvaney as his acting chief of staff, ending a weeks-long uncertainty over who would replace John Kelly.

Less than 24 hours later, footage from the 2016 election where Mulvaney called Trump "a terrible human being" started doing the rounds.

The footage is from a debate between Mulvaney and his then-congressional challenger Fran Person, less than a week before Trump was elected president.

"Yes, I'm supporting Donald Trump," Mulvaney told the crowd gathered at a middle school in South Carolina.

"I'm doing so as enthusiastically as I can, even though I think he's a terrible human being. But the choice on the other side [Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton] is just as bad."

Footage of the comment was obtained and published by the Daily Beast.

Mulvaney has not commented on the video, but said on Saturday that his appointment was a "tremendous honour".

It's not clear why Trump made Mulvaney's appointment a non-permanent one, but it comes after Trump's first choice -- Vice President Mike Pence's chief of staff Nick Ayers -- took himself out of the running.

It was widely reported that Ayers and Trump could not agree on a time commitment for the role, with Ayers choosing to leave the White House instead.

Trump claimed there were "many" people who wanted the chief of staff role, a direct rebuke to reports that none of the so-called front-runners particularly wanted the gig.

Contact the author: abrucesmith@networkten.com.au

Photo: Getty