President Joe Biden announced Thursday that Karine Jean-Pierre will succeed Jen Psaki as the White House press secretary.
Biden praised Jean-Pierre in his announcement and highlighted her experience serving as the principal deputy press secretary, Psaki’s No. 2. Psaki is set to depart her post at the White House on May 13.
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"I am proud to announce that Karine Jean-Pierre will serve as the next White House Press Secretary," the president said in a statement. "Karine not only brings the experience, talent, and integrity needed for this difficult job, but she will continue to lead the way in communicating about the work of the Biden-Harris Administration on behalf of the American people."
As the principal deputy press secretary, Jean-Pierre held White House briefings when Psaki was absent. She also served as Vice President Kamala Harris’s chief of staff during the 2020 campaign, an analyst for NBC News and MSNBC, and a national spokeswoman for MoveOn.org, which advocates liberal causes.
Jean-Pierre expressed gratitude for the appointment on Twitter following the announcement Thursday.
"It is a true honor. I look forward to serving this Administration and the American people. I have big shoes to fill. [Psaki] has been a great friend, mentor and excellent press secretary," she tweeted.
Thank you @POTUS and @FLOTUS for this opportunity. It is a true honor. I look forward to serving this Administration and the American people. I have big shoes to fill. @PressSec has been a great friend, mentor and excellent press secretary. pic.twitter.com/1knmbe2Nxq— Karine Jean-Pierre (@KJP46) May 5, 2022
Psaki hailed Jean-Pierre's appointment Thursday and noted that she will be the first black woman and the first openly LGBT person to hold the position.
"Representation matters and she will give a voice to many, but also make many dream big about what is truly possible. [Jean-Pierre] has decades of experience from her early years working in government and politics in NYC, to her years as an outspoken advocate, to serving as a long-time advisor to back when [Biden] was the VP," Psaki tweeted.
Biden commended Psaki, saying she "raised the bar" with her performance as press secretary.
"Jen Psaki has set the standard for returning decency, respect, and decorum to the White House Briefing Room," he said in his announcement. "I want to say thank you to Jen for raising the bar, communicating directly and truthfully to the American people, and keeping her sense of humor while doing so. I thank Jen for her service to the country, and wish her the very best as she moves forward."
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Psaki had been needled on the ethics of remaining the White House's top spokeswoman amid rumors she was negotiating post-administration deals with TV networks, such as CNN and MSNBC. It was reported in March she was in final talks with MSNBC, including for her own show on Peacock, NBCUniversal's streaming platform.
Biden also announced Anita Dunn will return as a senior adviser and assistant to the president, resuming the post she left last fall. Dunn has been working for communications and political consulting firm SKDK and will "assist in advancing the President's policy and communications objectives," according to the White House.