Deputy Press Secretary Raj Shah had it all planned out: breeze through Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation, then peace out for the private sector. Things, according to a new report by Yahoo News, don’t seem to be going that way.
Per Yahoo News:
Shah has been leading the communications efforts in support of the confirmation process since Kavanaugh’s nomination in July. Two sources familiar with Shah’s thinking said he thought that helping to shepherd the successful confirmation would allow him to end his White House tenure on a high note.
CBS reported in June that both Shah and his boss, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, were planning to quit but hadn’t decided when. According to Yahoo, Shah was allegedly hoping to stick around and see the Trump administration confirm a new Supreme Court Justice before jumping to a private sector job, which various sources told the site he may already have lined up.
Sanders, for her part, immediately denied CBS’s original claims that she was on her way out, tweeting that she “loved her job” and was “honored to work for POTUS,” which did absolutely nothing to quell rumors that she was actively trying to not work for POTUS by the end of the year.
In July, Politico reported that staffers had started preparing for “life after Sarah,” going so far as to draw up a short list of people who would take over the important job of openly lying to the American public. Per Politico, current State Department Spokesperson Heather Nauert was the favorite at the time, but at this point, it could really be anybody. Shah was nowhere near the top of the list, most likely because he wanted nothing to do with the job, and Yahoo’s source says Shah knows he isn’t even in the running anymore.
To be fair, Sanders doesn’t seem to have any interest in doing the job either — she held only 13 press briefings over the entirety of June, July, and August, and has only deigned to take the podium once in all of September.
As Yahoo notes, that left Shah mostly in charge of running the show of White House messaging during the Kavanaugh confirmation. And now he’s likely just counting down the days until the Kavanaugh mess is over and he can fall into the arms of whatever Washington consulting firm Sean Spicer passed up in favor of a book deal.