As President-elect Joe Biden continues to put together his administration, media members from legacy publications are flocking to the jobs.
This is not the first time a president has taken to the media in choosing an administration. President Donald Trump tapped multiple former Fox News personalities to play a role in his cabinet throughout his presidency. This “Trump-Fox revolving door,” as it was dubbed, appeared to consistently anger publications like CNN and NBC News.
Now, Biden is picking from these same networks as he puts together his staff for an upcoming presidency.
Jon Meacham, MSNBC
Former MSNBC contributor Jon Meacham made headlines earlier in November after going on the network to discuss Biden’s victory speech – which he reportedly helped write. In addition to this speech, the presidential historian quietly helped draft others for Biden, according to The New York Times.
Meacham reportedly did not disclose this information as he continued appearing on the network. As a result, he is no longer a paid contributor for MSNBC, according to the NYT, which noted he is allegedly “expected to return to NBC as an unpaid guest and could resume his paid role next year, possibly after the inauguration.” (RELATED: Jon Meacham Reportedly No Longer Paid MSNBC Contributor After Secretly Helping With Biden’s Speeches)
Barbara McQuade, MSNBC/NBC News
Now-former MSNBC columnist and MSNBC/NBC legal analyst Barbara McQuade was tapped into Biden’s transition team at the Department of Justice in November.
McQuade is no stranger to Democratic presidents, having been appointed by former President Barack Obama as the federal prosecutor for Michigan’s Eastern District in 2010. She stepped down in 2017 as Trump dismissed multiple U.S. attorneys appointed by Obama.
McQuade is no longer an MSNBC/NBC analyst due to her involvement with Biden’s transition team, an MSNBC spokesperson told the Caller. However, her Twitter biography still has her legal analyst job listed.
Richard Stengel, MSNBC
Stengel, who was employed as an MSNBC legal analyst, is another media member being brought into the Biden transition team. Stengel is the lead official for the U.S. Agency for Global Media (USAGM). This agency oversees the state-run Voice of America (VOA), among other taxpayer-funded broadcasting publications.
Stengel also spent time flip-flopping between media jobs – under Obama, he worked as a State Department official, and he also spent time as an editor for Time Magazine from 2006-2013. (RELATED: FLASHBACK: Biden Transition Leader Says He Wants To Restrict Free Speech)
Due to Stengel’s involvement with Biden’s team, he is no longer a contributor with MSNBC, a network spokesperson confirmed to the Caller. A LinkedIn account, however, still lists him as a current political analyst for the network.
Karine Jean Pierre, MSNBC/NBC News
An activist and now-former political analyst for MSNBC and NBC News, Pierre was one of the first signs that a Biden administration could include a slew of former media members. She left her position at MSNBC in May to work on Biden’s campaign, Deadline previously reported.
I am thrilled to announce that I will be joining the Biden campaign as a Senior Adviser. This is the most important general election in generations and I just could not sit this election out. I look forward to doing this work with @JoeBiden and the team! #Biden2020 pic.twitter.com/yGQfMA6E2F
— Karine Jean-Pierre (@K_JeanPierre) May 20, 2020
After that, Pierre began working for Democratic Vice President-elect Kamala Harris as the chief of staff in August. Amid a Biden presidency, Pierre will continue her work with the duo, as she’s been chosen to be the principal deputy press secretary.
Like others, Pierre’s history in media is coupled with a background working under Obama. She was the Regional Political Director for the White House Office of Political Affairs, the Deputy Battleground States Director for Obama’s 2012 campaign and the Southeast Regional Political Director for his 2008 campaign, WTKR reported.
Dr. Zeke Emanuel, NBC News
The list of NBC News connections continues with Emanuel, whom the network hired as a medical contributor in March 2020, The Wrap previously reported. He’s been outspoken regarding COVID-19 and even co-hosted a special on host Lawrence O’Donnell’s “The Last Word” in March and April.
Emanuel is now joining Biden’s coronavirus task force and he is no longer a contributor due to this, an MSNBC spokesperson confirmed. He previously worked under Obama as a health care policy advisor.
In 2014, Emanuel, now aged 63, wrote an essay published in The Atlantic about why he hopes to die at the age of 75. The essay declared that “living too long is also a loss” as “it renders many of us, if not disabled, then faltering and declining, a state that may not be worse than death but is nonetheless deprived.”
“It robs us of our creativity and ability to contribute to work, society, the world,” according to Emanuel, who is working for 77-year-old Biden. “It transforms how people experience us, relate to us, and, most important, remember us. We are no longer remembered as vibrant and engaged but as feeble, ineffectual, even pathetic.”
Jen Psaki, CNN
Although many of Biden’s choices are coming from NBC News and MSNBC, a few have been chosen from CNN, too. Psaki, a former CNN commentator, left the network to become a senior advisor for the Biden-Harris transition team, Anderson Cooper reported on-air.
Psaki’s time working for Biden will continue, as she was named the incoming administration’s White House press secretary on Sunday. Psaki previously worked as a State Department spokeswoman during the Obama administration, among several other top positions, the Wall Street Journal reported.
The former CNN commentator is part of an all-female team that will lead Biden’s White House communications. (RELATED: Joe Biden’s Transition Team Announces First All-Female WH Communications Team)
Biden announces all-female communications team:
• Kate Bedingfield, communications director
• Pili Tobar, dep comms dir
• Jen Psaki, press secretary
• Karine Jean Pierre, principal deputy press secretary
• Symone Sanders, VP adviser/spox
• Ashley Etienne, VP comms dir
— Sahil Kapur (@sahilkapur) November 29, 2020
Antony Blinken, CNN
Blinken is a global affairs analyst for CNN slated to become the next Secretary of State. He worked in multiple positions throughout Obama’s presidency, including as Deputy Secretary of State, the Assistant to the President and Principal Deputy National Security Advisor, a biography on the Human Rights First website noted.
CNN reported Blinken’s upcoming role on its website Nov. 24, calling him Biden’s “loyal lieutenant.” The network did not note his role as an analyst on this news story and cited a former State Department official who said “it’s difficult to know where one person’s policy vision ends and the other’s begins” with regards to his long Biden-involved history.
Fox News reported that “A CNN insider confirmed that Blinken does not currently work for the network” after host Brian Stelter claimed to have no knowledge of Blinken’s analyst role at the network. CNN did not immediately respond to a request for comment regarding Blinken’s current status as an analyst.
This post will continue to be updated if more media members join the Biden-Harris administration.