PSAKI will not confirm that she is leaving the White House for MSNBC | News, Sports, Jobs
WASHINGTON — White House press secretary Jen Psaki on Friday did not confirm reports that she will soon be accepting a television job at MSNBC, saying she is focused on her job speaking on behalf of the President Joe Biden.
“I have nothing to confirm on my length of public service or planned service or anything on the consideration of future projects,” PSAKI said under questioning during her first briefing after COVID-19 forced her into self-quarantine for the second time in late March.
“I am so happy to be with you all here today after it felt like I was spending endless time in my quarantined basement away from my family,” she says. “My daily focus continues to speak on behalf of the president.”
News site Axios first reported on Friday, citing a source familiar with the matter, that Psaki was in exclusive talks to join MSNBC after leaving the White House around May.
Several MSNBC representatives did not respond to emailed requests for comment on Friday.
Reports earlier this year indicated that Psaki was heavily courted by both MSNBC and CNN, where she provided on-air commentary before joining then-president-elect Biden’s transition team. The Axios report on Friday suggested Psaki, 43, narrowed his search.
Asked Friday about her future employment and the ethics of negotiating a television job while serving as the public face of the administration, Psaki repeatedly stressed that she had complied with all ethical and legal requirements imposed by the Biden administration.
“I have always exceeded the strict ethical and legal requirements of the Biden administration, and I take that very seriously,” she says. “And as is standard for every White House employee, I received rigorous ethical guidance, including with respect to any future employment.”
White House press secretaries typically don’t occupy this grueling job for very long, and presidents are often served by multiple chief spokespersons. President Barack Obama had three in his eight years in office, while President Donald Trump had four in his four-year term.
PSAki openly said she would hold the position for at least a year before she began to think about moving on, often citing her young son and daughter as the reason.
In May 2021, she told political strategist and podcast host David Axelrod why she loved the job of White House press secretary — and why she was unlikely to do it again a year later.
“I have small children and I don’t want to miss time with them. I don’t want to miss any moments,” she says.
She expressed a similar sentiment on Friday.
“No matter what time I leave the White House, I can promise you that the first thing I will do is sleep and spend time with my 3 and 6 year olds, who are my biggest audience. important to all”, said Psaki.