Vice President-elect Mike Pence will take over as the leader of Donald J. Trump’s transition effort, pushing aside Chris Christie, the governor of New Jersey, as Mr. Trump moves quickly to assemble a government after his stunning upset victory, the transition team said on Friday.
The reorganisation puts the urgent task of selecting cabinet officials and key West Wing posts in the hands of Mr. Pence, whose loyalty to Mr. Trump and deep contacts with the Republican establishment on Capitol Hill are seen as critical to navigating the often politically treacherous transition period.
But in shuffling those responsible for shaping his administration, Mr. Trump is also keeping close the inner circle of campaign advisers who are deeply skeptical of Washington and who helped design an outsider campaign built on angry and often divisive rhetoric. Stephen K. Bannon, the conservative provocateur and chairman of the Breitbart News website, will be a top transition adviser.
Three of Mr. Trump’s adult children and his son-in-law, who were among his closest campaign advisers, will join a 16-member advisory committee to help guide his choices. Rick Dearborn, the chief of staff to Senator Jeff Sessions, Republican of Alabama and a fierce advocate for Mr. Trump, will move from the campaign’s Washington office to help direct the transition operations.
Mr. Christie will become a vice chairman of the transition effort, the campaign said.
The new inner circle at the transition offices will direct the activities of dozens of corporate consultants, lobbyists and other specialists who will be responsible for recommending candidates for agency jobs across the breadth of the federal government. Some of those advisers come from industries for which they are now in charge of finding top regulators.
“The mission of our team will be clear: put together the most highly qualified group of successful leaders who will be able to implement our change agenda in Washington,” the transition team announced Friday afternoon.
The surprise moves will sideline Mr. Christie, who had been in charge of the transition for several months. After Mr. Christie dropped out of the Republican primary race, he became a staunch supporter of Mr. Trump. But his standing has fallen recently as two former aides were convicted in the scandal involving the closing of access lanes at the George Washington Bridge in 2013.
In a statement, Mr. Christie said that he is “proud to have run the pre-election phase of the transition team” and said that he looks forward to working with Mr. Pence. “I want to thank President-elect Trump for the opportunity to continue to help lead in this next phase,” Mr. Christie wrote.
Two people familiar with the reorganization discussion said Jared Kushner, Mr. Trump’s son-in-law, had wanted to marginalise Mr. Christie, who had come to recognize that he was not in the running to serve as a top adviser in Mr. Trump’s White House. It was unclear whether concerns about his ability to be confirmed might prevent him from being offered a cabinet post.
The changes will also push aside Richard H. Bagger, a former top aide to Mr. Christie who had been working on the transition. The transition team said Mr. Bagger will “return to the private sector” but will remain an adviser.
Rudolph W. Giuliani, the former mayor of New York, and Michael T. Flynn, a retired lieutenant general who has been a top campaign supporter, will also serve as vice chairmen of the transition, the transition team said Friday afternoon.
The 16-member advisory committee is made up of four women and 12 men. It will include several members of Congress; Rebekah Mercer, a top Republican donor; Reince Priebus, the chairman of the Republican National Committee; Peter Thiel, a founder of PayPal; Attorney General Pam Bondi of Florida; Steven Mnuchin, a former Goldman Sachs executive; and Anthony Scaramucci, a hedge-fund manager and Trump supporter. Mr. Bannon will also serve on the committee. A political committee supporting Ms. Bondi received a $25,000 donation from the Trump Foundation, raising questions because it was around the time her office was reviewing allegations against Mr. Trump’s for-profit education programs.
“This team of experienced leaders will form the building blocks of our presidential transition team staff leadership roster, and will work with elected officials and tireless volunteers to prepare our government for the transfer of power on Jan. 20,” Mr. Pence said in a statement.