White House Communications Director Kate Bedingfield Plans Departure

White House Communications Director Kate Bedingfield Plans Departure

July 6, 2022

Kate Bedingfield plans to depart her post as White House communications director, according to White House officials.

Bedingfield, who has been with President Joe Biden since the start of his term and, before that, was a senior official on his presidential campaign, plans to leave this summer and perhaps in the next few weeks. The Wall Street Journal first reported the news of her departure.

Her exit is the latest high-profile departure from the White House. Press Secretary Jen Psaki stepped down in May.

Bedingfield has been a key figure in developing Biden’s communications and campaign strategy. After working as chief spokesperson for the Motion Picture Association, she became his communications director when he was vice president. After going into the private sector during most of the term of Donald Trump, she joined Biden’s presidential campaign as deputy campaign manager for communications.

Bedingfield is leaving to spend more time with her husband and family, after three and a half years on the campaign and in the administration, according to a White House official.

Ron Klain, Biden’s chief of staff, said in a statement, “Without Kate Bedingfield’s talent and tenacity, Donald Trump might still be in the White House, the Rescue Plan and the Infrastructure Law might still be unrealized goals, and Kentaji Brown Jackson might not be sitting on the Supreme Court.

Klain added, “She has played a huge role in everything the President has achieved – from his second term as Vice President, through the campaign, and since coming to the White House.  Her strategic acumen, intense devotion to the President’s agenda, and fierce work on his behalf are unmatched.  She will continue to remain a critical player in moving the Biden agenda forward from the outside.”

Bedingfield’s husband, David Kieve, is a former top climate adviser.

Bedingfield has played a major role in preparing Biden for debates and TV appearances. She also helped organize high profile endorsements in advance of Super Tuesday, when Biden scored unexpected, come-from-behind victories that led to him securing the Democratic nomination. Bedingfield also has served as a defender of Biden in TV appearances, and is said to be one of his trusted advisers who has a strong sense of his voice.

Her departure comes amid under-water approval ratings for Biden, and increasing concerns among Democrats that the chances of holding Congress are slipping away with midterms approaching. Cedric Richmond resigned as the White House director of public engagement in May to take a job at the Democratic National Committee.

More to come.

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