Politics

Jen Psaki gives Halloween-colored gifts to a groom-to-be before he ties the knot

Jen Psaki gifting a
Jen Psaki gifting a "groom-to-be" button to Chris MeagherPhoto: Screenshot/C-SPAN

At Friday’s White House Press Briefing, Press Secretary Jen Psaki opened the briefing by first addressing an international agreement on corporate tax increases. Then, before taking questions, she had a quick surprise.

“I know we talk about serious things in here, but we have one fun thing today,” Psaki said.

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“Chris is getting married in a week,” she explained before the audience of correspondents applauded, referring to her colleague, White House Deputy Press Secretary Chris Meagher. “So you won’t see him for two weeks, and nobody can call him or bother him for two weeks.”

So, Psaki decided, “Just to embarrass him a little bit,” that she would get him “a little special sash to wear, just for the briefing,” she claimed.

“Because everybody should know that Chris is marrying up, as many people do,” she joked to laughter.

She then gave Meagher, sitting on the side alongside Deputy Press Secretary Sabrina Singh and Principal Deputy Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre, the sash so he could put it on himself.

“And also, a pin,” Psaki added. She then gave a button with an attached ribbon to Meagher, as the correspondents began chanting for him to put them both on. Meagher did, at least for the briefing (although it appears his fiancée has other plans.)

The sash and button read, “Groom-to-be.” One person remarked that both were “Halloween-themed,” since they were both black and orange.

Psaki then immediately got back to business, taking the opening question from Aamir Madhani, the White House Correspondent for the Associated Press. “I don’t know how I top that,” Madhani quipped.

The room burst into laughter again, with a voice remarking, “impossible.” Psaki said that Madhani could give Meagher advice. Madhani then asked about Biden’s decision regarding the unveiling of White House communications relevant to the January 6 insurrection, and Psaki explained Biden’s decision not to assert executive privilege over any documented evidence deriving from the White House under Donald Trump.

Meagher was the former National Press Secretary for out presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg’s campaign 2020. After Buttigieg ended his historic campaign, Meagher became a communications advisor for Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D), serving through the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic.

He became the Director of Public Affairs for the Department of Transportation right after Buttigieg was confirmed as Transportation Secretary in February. He then joined the White House this March, succeeding initial Deputy White House Secretary TJ Ducklo.

Meagher is marrying Vanessa Valdivia, who currently works as communications director for Sen. Alex Padilla (D-CA). The couple became engaged in December 2020.

When former Democratic Party spokesperson Xochitl Hinojosa asked Valdivia to “please make him wear that all week,” Valdivia responded, “100%.”

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