Politico

Biden considers elevating Mayor Pete's spokesperson


Chris Meagher, a top spokesman for Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, is being seriously considered to be a White House deputy press secretary, according to two people familiar with the matter.

Meagher, who recently started as deputy director of public affairs at the Department of Transportation, would replace TJ Ducklo, who resigned in mid-February after threatening a POLITICO reporter. Meagher didn’t respond to a request for comment, and a White House spokesperson declined to comment.

Meagher was national press secretary on Buttigieg’s 2020 presidential campaign and later worked as deputy communications director for the Democratic National Committee in the 2020 cycle. He graduated with a degree in journalism from Michigan State University and started his career as a reporter covering local news in Santa Barbara, California, earning a law degree during the same time.

Meagher got his start in politics doing press and communications work for former Rep. Lois Capps (D-Calif.). He has served as senior communications adviser for the Colorado and Montana state Democratic parties. He also worked for Sen. Jon Tester’s (D-Mont.) Senate reelection campaign in 2018.

In addition to Meagher’s potential hire, Andrew Bates is also likely to go into the White House as another deputy press secretary, according to the two people familiar with the matter. Bates would do so once he’s done with his job working on communications for the transition, where he’s focusing on Senate confirmations of cabinet nominees. Bates declined to comment.

A well-liked native North Carolinian, Bates worked as the director of rapid response for the Biden campaign. He served in the Obama White House’s communications shop and was also press secretary for the U.S. Trade Representative before a gig as the North Carolina communications director for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign. He is also an alum of the Democratic super PAC American Bridge 21st Century.

While Bates got his start working in Democratic politics during his time at North Carolina State University, he’s alone in his immediate family in working in the political sphere. He told POLITICO in a Q&A last month that he was “the only member of my immediate family who isn’t a professional classical musician. Figured I’d end this on a high note. Get it? :)”

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