Chris Meagher, a former spokesman for the Colorado Democratic Party and veteran communications adviser to several leading Democrats, has been hired as a deputy White House press secretary.
Currently the top spokesman for Transportation Secretary Pete Buttieigeg, Meagher starts the new job Wednesday, the Washington Post first reported. He will replace TJ Ducklo, who resigned last month following allegations he had threatened a Politico reporter.
“Chris brings a depth of experience both in government and on political campaigns, as well as a commitment to engagement, to integrity and to ensuring the public has access to information, and I could not be more thrilled to welcome him as a senior member of the White House press team,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki said in a statement to news organizations.
“I am honored by this appointment, and look forward to supporting the important work President Biden and his team have been getting done on behalf of the American people over the last six weeks," Meagher told Colorado Politics in a statement.
"The work continues — to rebuild our economy back better than it was before, to combat climate change, and to make our country more equitable for all, and I can’t wait to get started with Jen and her stellar team."
Politico was first to report that Meagher was under consideration for the White House press office position.
Meagher was the Colorado Democrats' senior communications adviser in 2016, helping formulate the party's message during U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet's re-election campaign. In a near-daily stream of missives, Meagher jabbed the Republican Senate candidates' "turmoil, stumbles, chaos and confusion," including a compilation of news clips that suggested calling the GOP field a "Dumpster fire is an insult to burning Dumpsters everywhere."
Before landing in Colorado, the Michigan native graduated with a degree in journalism from Michigan State University and then spent six years covering local news at the Santa Barbara Independent while at the same time pursuing a law degree from the Santa Barbara and Ventura Colleges of Law. He worked in Washington, D.C., as communications director for then-U.S. Rep. Lois Capps, a California Democrat, and took a communications job at General Motors.
Following Bennet's 2016 win, Meagher helped Rick Palacio, the then-chair of the Colorado Democrats, in a bid for vice chair of the national party. Then Meagher, a decendant of Montana territorial governor Thomas Francis Meagher, went to work as senior communications adviser for the Montana Democratic Party ahead of U.S. Sen. Jon Tester's 2018 run for a third term, later working as communications director for Tester's successful re-election campaign.
Meagher worked as national press secretary for Buttigieg's 2020 presidential campaign and later served as a deputy communications director for the Democratic National Committee through the 2020 election until the beginning of this year. In between, he advised Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, when the Democrat was facing intense scrutiny for her handling of the coronavirus pandemic and was considered a possible running mate for Joe Biden.
“Chris came to my office during a critical moment at the beginning of the most challenging time of my tenure. He helped lead our communications strategy as we battled the pandemic and tried to get information out to the public, and we were fortunate to have him working on behalf of the state of Michigan," Whitmer said in a statement to The Detroit News.
She added that Biden and his administration "will be well served by having him in their corner as they lead our country back from this pandemic.”
Said Buttigieg in a statement: "Chris has earned the trust and appreciation of colleagues and reporters alike thanks to his work ethic, talent and integrity."