Update: Hope Hicks, the White House's communications director and one of President Trump's most loyal staffers, is set to be interviewed in connection with the Russia investigation. Politico reports Hicks will meet with Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s team in mid-November.
This story was originally published on August 16, 2017.
In August, the White House announced on Hope Hicks would serve as the interim communications director during the search for a replacement for Anthony Scaramucci. A month later, she was appointed to the role permanently.
Before assuming the position, Hicks acted as senior communications adviser since President Trump took office, remaining in an administration multiple communications directors and a press secretary have left.
Hicks, 29, previously did public relations for the Trump Organization, later joining the Trump campaign. She's considered a loyal, right-hand woman to the president, with a desk near the Oval Office and access to Trump's ear few have, but that loyalty is worrisome if it means letting the president do as he pleases.
During a The New York Times interview with President Trump in July — in which the president said he wouldn't have hired Attorney General Jeff Sessions if he knew he would recuse himself from the Russia investigation and wouldn't reject the possibility of firing special counsel Robert Mueller — Hicks was the only member of Trump's team in the room. Politico reported that she reminded Trump a few times that he didn't have to answer every question on the record, but he kept going anyway.
"She will often give advice, and she’ll do it in a very low-key manner, so it doesn’t necessarily come in the form of advice," Trump told The New York Times of Hicks in 2016. "But it’s delivered very nicely."
No one can be expected to have complete control over the president, and, as others have noted, Trump typically acts as his own communications director. But, being loyal to the president shouldn't mean enabling destructive or damaging behavior.
Hicks stays out of the limelight and doesn't give many public statements herself, but Politico's Annie Karni notes that Hicks doesn't want to "change or judge a 70-year-old man whose career highs have been based on trusting his own instincts."
A communications director who enables the president won't reign in his unplanned tweets and statements that often cause confusion across the country and escalate the rhetoric surrounding international conflicts.