Biden’s former spokeswoman will cover this year’s elections for the liberal network
Former White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki will cover this year’s midterm elections on MSNBC, the network announced on Tuesday. Psaki joins a long list of politicians, police officers, and spy leaders who have been able to get TV spots since leaving Washington.
Psaki fled the White House in protest at rumors of a possible deal between her and MSNBC. MSNBC workers feared such an agreement might be made. “tarnish” the network’s supposedly non-biased image, the deal went through and was announced by MSNBC President Rashida Jones on Tuesday.
Jones stated in a statement that Psaki was the choice of the network for her. “extensive experience in government and on the campaign trail and perspective as a White House and Washington insider.”
“She’s a familiar face and trusted authority to MSNBC viewers, and we look forward to her insight during this consequential election season,” Jones continued.
In addition to her upcoming work as a political commentator, Psaki will host her own show on Peacock, MSNBC’s streaming service, as of early 2023.
Psaki was not a pioneer in leaving Washington to pursue a career as a cable news journalist. MSNBC has employed a host of prominent officials as commentators, particularly those who worked for the US’ law enforcement and espionage agencies. John Brennan (ex-CIA director), Chuck Rosenberg (ex-acting DEA director) and Frank Figliuzzi (ex-FBI assistant director).
David Axelrod, a former advisor to Barack Obama, found work at MSNBC after leaving the White House, as did Robert Gibbs, President Obama’s first press secretary and Psaki’s boss between 2009 and 2011. The pipeline flows both ways too, with Psaki’s replacement in the White House, Karinne Jean-Pierre, having previously worked as a political analyst at the network in between stints in the Obama and Biden campaigns.
MSNBC was not the only network to hire former White House representatives. Fox News has hired Kayleigh McEnany (his last press secretary) as a contributor two months after Donald Trump resigned. MSNBC is not the only network that hires extensively from intelligence agencies under Democratic administrations.
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CNN, which counts former director of National Intelligence James Clapper as a commentator, along with former CIA/NSA director Michael Hayden and ex-FBI deputy chief Andrew McCabe. Former CNN officials often return to government, just like those who worked at MSNBC. Antony Blinken was a CNN contributor after serving as Obama’s deputy national security advisor, and is now Biden’s secretary of state. Samantha Vinograd served on Obama’s National Security Council before moving on to CNN, and then returning to Washington as a senior member of Biden’s Department of Homeland Security.
Psaki, in a statement about her decision to join MSNBC stated that her experiences during the Biden administration would have influenced her contributions to the network. “My time in government, from the White House to the State Department, and years before that on national political campaigns, will fuel the insight and perspective I bring to this next chapter,”She said.
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