CNN hires former Biden, Obama aide as commentator

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Kate Bedingfield is joining CNN as an on-air political commentator, the network announced July 21, 2023.

Bedingfield joins CNN after serving for two years as White House communications director under President Joe Biden.

As with most commentator roles, Bedingfield will be under contract with CNN and be paid per the terms of a contract. Her role is distinct from that of a correspondent in that she has been hired specifically for her expertise and experience in a specific area — and, given her work history, likely represents a left-leaning stance. Because she is not a journalist and her role is at least partially meant to leverage her experience working for Democratic administrations, she is not subject to the same ethics and bias guidelines as a correspondent or reporter.

Bedingfield has nearly 20 years of experience in political and corporate strategic communications. Prior to serving as White House communications director, she served as deputy campaign manager and communications director on the Biden-Harris 2020 campaign, where she helped launch President Biden’s campaign in the spring of 2019 and then helped him successfully navigate the Democratic primary and go on to defeat Donald Trump. Bedingfield also served as Biden’s communications director in the Office of the Vice President and as director of response and associate communications director in the Obama White House.

She has numerous additional winning campaigns on her resume, including serving as Communications Director on Senator Jeanne Shaheen’s 2008 Senate campaign and as a press secretary at the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee during the Democrats’ successful effort to retake control of the House of Representatives in 2006. In addition to her political communications work, Bedingfield has worked in both sports and entertainment in the private sector, including at the Motion Picture Association and at Monumental Sports & Entertainment in Washington, DC. Bedingfield is a graduate of the University of Virginia.

Bedingfield will be based in Washington, D.C.