It’s getting hard to keep up with all the drama at Donald Trump’s White House. Apparently, one department that’s had the worst luck is the White House communications office. In a somewhat surprising move, White House Communications Director Hope Hicks announced her plans to resign. Although Hicks tried to keep a low profile, scandal found her, and the outcome wasn’t so great. Hicks says her resignation was planned beforehand, but just like almost everything involving Trump, there’s more to the story.
This might be the real reason Hope Hicks left her job at the Trump White House (page 4). We’ll also take a quick look at how she made it to the White House (page 9).
A department in turmoil
It seems no one remains in the communications office for very long. At this point, a job in this office is shorter than a summer internship. There have been several departures within a short amount of time. For example, Press Secretary Sean Spicer left his position shortly after Anthony Scaramucci came aboard. (Scaramucci was only on the job for 11 days.)
Before that, Spicer temporarily filled in after former Communications Director Mike Dubke resigned after only three months. Hicks is now the fourth employee in the communications department to leave in less than a year. And Hicks is at least the 18th high-level administration member to resign since Trump was inaugurated.
Next: Loyalty and silence go a long way with Trump
Loyalty — and silence — got her far
When it comes to working for Trump, loyalty comes before experience. Those who are his side go far, regardless of how fit they are to do their jobs. Hicks is aware of this, so much so that she declined requests to explain how a person with no political experience is appointed to top positions.
GQ reporter Olivia Nuzzi tried to get some answers but instead was offered a very strange alternative to a one-on-one interview. Here are Nuzzi’s observations:
Hicks is a product not of Washington but of the Trump Organization, a marble-walled universe where one’s delightful agreeability and ferocious loyalty are worth more than conventional experience. … I wanted Hicks to help me understand just how all this had come to pass, how a person who’d never worked in politics had nonetheless become the most improbably important operative in this election. But she declined my request to talk. Instead, she arranged something more surreal: I could talk about her with Donald Trump, in front of her.
Next: Her excuse for leaving
This is Hope Hicks’ excuse for leaving the White House
It appears obvious to pretty much everyone why Hicks is leaving. No one wants to be at the center of ongoing work drama. However, Hicks claims she is leaving to pursue other opportunities.
Although the timing of the departure seems suspicious, New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman says Hicks’ resignation has nothing to do with the eight-hour grilling she received during the House Intelligence Committee meeting, which took place just one day before she resigned. Haberman said on her Twitter account that Hicks had been thinking about leaving for a long time.
Next: The real reason why she is leaving
This is what sources say really happened
Trump was reportedly not happy with Hicks after the House Intelligence Committee meeting. The New York Post reports a source said Trump was quite angry and wanted to know “how she could be that stupid” to admit she tells lies for the president.
During the meeting, Hicks admitted to sometimes telling “white lies” for Trump. However, she claims she didn’t lie about anything related to the Russia investigation, reports CNN. Perhaps Hicks was given the opportunity to resign before being fired. Considering her close relationship with Trump, it’s a possibility.
Next: Trump cleaned up his statement for the public.
Trump’s public statement
Although Trump might have been angry, his public statement was a lot nicer. Trump, who is losing one of his closest confidants, says he will miss Hicks.
According to Fire and Fury author Michael Wolff, sources say Trump treats Hicks more like a daughter than a colleague, so it’s no surprise he speaks of her warmly. In his statement about Hicks’ departure, Trump had this to say, according to The New York Times:
Hope is outstanding and has done great work for the last three years. She is as smart and thoughtful as they come, a truly great person. I will miss having her by my side, but when she approached me about pursuing other opportunities, I totally understood. I am sure we will work together again in the future.
Next: Ride or die?
One mistake Hicks made was being fiercely loyal to Trump. She was so unfailingly loyal she would even lie for him. The revelation of her “white lies” eventually harmed her credibility and possibly led to her resignation. Hicks also made the mistake of being incredibly loyal and trying to protect her boyfriend, former Staff Secretary Rob Porter.
She played a role in writing the White House’s response to abuse allegations against Porter. It was later revealed that White House officials were aware of the abuse allegations and that Porter never received security clearance. Hicks’ role in drafting the White House statement from Chief of Staff John Kelly raises red flags considering her alleged romantic relationship with Porter.
Next: Here’s what Hicks got right.
The 1 thing Hicks did right
Although there have been many fumbles in Hicks’ career, she did manage to do one thing right: She left her job when it was clearly time to go.
One of the biggest career mistakes many people make is staying at a job that is no longer serving their best interests. Hicks’ job was taking a turn for the worst, and she finally decided it was time to pack it up. This is much better than being escorted out of the building, as Omarosa allegedly was.
Next: This is what might be next for Hope Hicks.
What’s next for Hope Hicks?
Trump mentioned he’s sure he and Hicks will work again in the future. So it’s safe to assume Hicks could work for Trump in some other capacity, possibly for one of his businesses. She is also close to Ivanka Trump, so there could be a future there, as well. Hicks used to work on Ivanka’s apparel and licensing brand prior to joining Trump’s staff. As of this writing, Hicks has yet to say what she will do after she leaves the White House.
Next: How did Hicks even make it to the White House in the first place?
Let’s call it what it is: Luck
How did Hope Hicks get to where she is now? Hicks proves it’s not who you know, but who knows you. Many people wonder how she got such a prominent job in the White House at such a young age. Sure, she might be smart. But let’s face it: She just happened to be in the right place at the right time.
During her tenure at public relations firm Hiltzik Strategies, Hicks worked on the hotel and golf divisions of The Trump Organization. This is how she was able to meet the right people and eventually rise to her current position.
Next: A pretty face
Another thing that helped: Being pretty
It also doesn’t hurt that Hicks is easy on the eyes. When it comes down to how Trump operates, being attractive is always a plus. It’s no secret that Trump likes pretty women and models (and allegedly adult entertainment stars), so part of the mystery is solved right there. But beyond that, it’s been pretty well documented that attractive people have more career success.
Next: An unusual relationship
Hicks and Trump’s relationship
Hicks and Trump had an unusual relationship. Some of the details of their interaction was outlined in Michael Wolff’s controversial book Fire and Fury. In the book, Wolff claims Trump treated Hicks like his daughter and Ivanka Trump as if she were his wife, reports GQ. “[Hope] Hicks was in fact thought of as Trump’s real daughter, while Ivanka was thought of as his real wife,” wrote Wolff.
Next: Her life seems to have been charmed from the start.
Before the White House
Hicks had an interesting life before the White House. She started out as a teen model. (She had a modeling contract with Ford.) She appeared in campaigns for Ralph Lauren and was on the cover of a Gossip Girl spinoff series called It Girl, as well as another book series called The Hourglass.
The Greenwich, Connecticut, native later went on to earn an English degree at Southern Methodist University. The New York Times reports she was also a champion lacrosse player.
Next: Her big promotion
Her big break
Before Hicks served on Trump’s staff, she had no political experience. Prior to her role as communications director, the former model was assistant to the president and interim communications director. She also served as press secretary and communications director for Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign and national press secretary for his transition team. Hicks got her big break after Scaramucci stepped down from the post after just 11 days on the job.
Next: Big trouble
A troubled department
The White House communications office has been a revolving door. It’s hard not to notice the frequency with which people have entered and then left this department. Few people have been able to stay in the communications office very long.
There have been several departures within a short amount of time. For example, Press Secretary Sean Spicer left his position after Scaramucci came aboard. Before that, Spicer temporarily filled in after former Communications Director Mike Dubke left after only three months.
Next: A handsome paycheck
Hope Hicks’ salary
What was Hope Hicks’ salary? Hicks was paid well to deal with the president and all the stress that comes with working at the White House — and rightly so, considering the daytime drama that’s playing out at the White House these days.
The young communications director was paid the maximum salary of $179,700. That’s not bad considering she had no prior political experience. And it looks like some of that hard-earned cash has gone toward treating herself to some fabulous Louis Vuitton luggage.
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