The way Gabriel Sherman describes it here, I don’t think “encouraged” is too strong a word. It wasn’t a case, apparently, of Republicans on the Hill phoning Kelly and sounding him out about them saying something critical of Trump to distance the party from his Putinphilia. It was a matter of Kelly phoning them and nudging them to let him have it.
This should just about finish off the John Kelly era as chief of staff, with his one-year anniversary just two weeks away. If he’s this mad about what happened, why the hell didn’t he resign last night or today and make a statement? Trump’s probably going to can him anyway once he reads Sherman’s report.