Kayleigh McEnany is leaving President Trump Donald John TrumpOvernight Health Care: US hits 10,000 coronavirus deaths | Trump touts 'friendly' talk with Biden on response | Trump dismisses report on hospital shortages as 'just wrong' | Cuomo sees possible signs of curve flattening in NY We need to be 'One America,' the polling says — and the politicians should listen Barr tells prosecutors to consider coronavirus risk when determining bail: report MORE 's reelection campaign to serve as the new White House press secretary, a source confirmed on Tuesday.
The former Republican National Committee spokeswoman and the current spokeswoman for the Trump campaign will take over for outgoing press secretary Stephanie Grisham Stephanie GrishamTrump lashes out at NYT, WaPost amid criticism of coronavirus response OAN says it will attend briefing as White House guest after violating social distancing rules UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson tests positive for coronavirus MORE .
McEnany, 31, has long been a fierce defender of the president in television interviews and through the campaign. She was a frequent presence on the campaign trail, appearing at Trump rallies and participating in events for the Women for Trump coalition.
A formal announcement is expected later Tuesday.
The New York Times first reported the news.
The addition of McEnany is part of a broader overhaul of the White House press shop under new chief of staff Mark Meadows Mark Randall MeadowsThe Hill's Coronavirus Report: Dybul interview; Boris Johnson update Schumer names coronavirus czar candidates in plea to White House The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Guidance on masks is coming MORE . The changes come at a critical moment for the administration as it works to combat the coronavirus pandemic. Her arrival also underscores the increasing focus on the president's reelection as one of his top campaign surrogates becomes the face of the White House press shop.
McEnany will be the fourth press secretary of the Trump administration. She follows Grisham, Sarah Huckabee Sarah Elizabeth SandersFox News's Hume rips Alexander over 'gotcha' question to Trump NBC's Alexander: I gave Trump 'a softball' question as opportunity to 'reassure' Americans Coronavirus puts new use to White House press briefing room MORE Sanders and Sean Spicer Sean Michael SpicerMisplaced outrage over who attends a White House press conference Trump-NBC battle highlights shortcomings of White House coronavirus briefings The Hill's 12:30 Report: Trump triggers emergency powers to fight outbreak MORE . Both Grisham and Spicer lasted less than a year in the job.
The role of press secretary has been difficult for McEnany's predecessors, as Trump has long been viewed as his own spokesman. He has commandeered the daily coronavirus task force briefings in recent weeks, often taking questions from and sparring with reporters for up to two hours each evening.
The White House announced earlier Tuesday that Grisham would depart as press secretary to return to the East Wing as the first lady's chief of staff and spokeswoman.
Grisham’s legacy as press secretary is largely defined by her lack of visibility. She did not hold a single press briefing, nor did she engage in gaggles with reporters on camera, something deputy press secretary Hogan Gidley, White House counselor Kellyanne Conway Kellyanne Elizabeth ConwayBiden fights for attention in coronavirus news cycle Trump says he's open to speaking to Biden about coronavirus The Hill's Campaign Report: Biden offers to talk coronavirus response with Trump MORE and top economic adviser Larry Kudlow Lawrence (Larry) Alan KudlowMORE do regularly.
The outgoing press secretary did appear frequently on Fox News programs, where she was occasionally asked about the lack of briefings. She attributed the decision to Trump’s accessibility and her belief that reporters used the briefings as “theatre” to boost their profiles.
--This report was updated at 12:03 p.m.