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Report: Jen Psaki leaving White House for TV job

Press Secretary Jen Psaki answers questions, Feb. 24, 2021, at the White House. (Official White House Photo by Chandler West)
April 01, 2022

White House press secretary Jen Psaki plans to leave President Joe Biden’s administration around May and will likely join MSNBC in an on-air role, according to a source familiar with the matter, Axios reported.

While no contracts have been signed, Psaki is in negotiating exclusively with MSNBC, and is expected to host a show on NBCUniversal’s streaming service Peacock.

The press secretary reportedly told multiple senior officials at the White House of her plans to join the cable news channel following her departure from the Biden administration, but a source noted that Psaki has not formally notified the White House press team of her plans.

Some on Twitter raised concerns about potential ethics issues related to Psaki continuing to take questions from MSNBC while working for the White House.

“Also, under no circumstance should members of the White House press staff be negotiating, *while employed by the White House* with media organizations that cover the White House,” Dan McLaughlin from National Review tweeted.

Axios reported that Psaki has been consulting with the White House counsel’s office in order to avoid ethics and legal violations.

Psaki is following in the footsteps of former White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany, who also took the leap to television, joining Fox News almost two months after former President Donald Trump’s first term ended.

“It is my distinct pleasure today to welcome Kayleigh McEnany to the Fox family. We will be seeing much more of her in the future,” Fox News host Harris Faulkner announced at the time.

McEnany previously said she wishes Psaki “all the best,” but noted a glaring difference between the way the corporate media treats Psaki compared to how they treated her.

“I wish her all the best. I left her a note saying that much, we’ve met previously, one time, and she was very kind,” McEnany said. “So were some of her colleagues in the press shop and I left her a note, I wish her the best.”

“I’ll never forget watching one of the early press briefings where she was asked about Antifa riots and I believe she said that she hadn’t spoken to the president about that. They let her move on, whereas if I would have been asked that about violence on the other side of the aisle… that wouldn’t have been an answer that flew, nor should it have,” McEnany said, arguing that some reporters act like “political operatives.”

“I think the standards are different but the American people are so smart, so wise, they see the difference,” she added.