Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump (L) speaks with Reince Priebus, chairman of the Republican National Committee, at a debate sponsored by Fox News at the Fox Theatre on March 3, 2016 in Detroit, Michigan.
Chip Somodevilla—Getty Images
By Zeke J Miller
Updated: November 9, 2016 6:16 AM ET

Republican National Committee chairman Reince Priebus is the inside favorite to serve as chief of staff in President-elect Donald Trump’s Administration, according to two senior sources familiar with the initial discussions.

Cautioning that Trump’s transition is a work in progress, the sources said Priebus, a longtime operative who has run the RNC over the last six years and took on a leading role in managing the mercurial candidate, is “very likely” to serve in the key role.

“He is very likely Chief of Staff,” said one person familiar with the conversations. “Trump legit listens to him.”

Priebus took on a leading role in encouraging Trump to stay on message in the final weeks of the campaign, holding multiple calls with the candidate daily since he became the presumptive nominee in May, and frequently traveling on his plane.

Under Priebus’ leadership the RNC took on an unprecedented role in managing the nuts-and-bolts of Trump’s data, field, and finance operations.

Also worth adding, Priebus, a Wisconsinite, is a key ally of Speaker of the House Paul Ryan.

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