Who is Hope Hicks? She used to work for Ivanka Trump, but soon became like another daughter to Donald Trump. When he went to the White House, Hicks came, too. In fact, her office was within ear-shot of the president. Quite frequently, he would yell “Hopey,” and she would come running. She rarely left the White House during the day so that she would be available to him. Now, she is back in Washington, but it did not go well.
Hicks was mentioned 183 times in former special counsel Robert Mueller III’s report on Russia’s attack on the 2016 presidential election and Trump’s obstruction of justice. She was the House’s first fact witness, as opposed to one that was before the House Judiciary Committee for background material.
Hicks spent over seven hours before the committee on Wednesday. The two White House attorneys who accompanied her, interrupted every time one of the committee members mentioned the time Trump was in office. They also claimed “immunity,” for her, but that was not a real legal thing. It does not exist. Still, the former Trump aide was bound to make a few slips.
Jerry Nadler (D-NY) released a statement after the Judiciary Committee he chaired heard Hicks’ testimony, according to Reuters:
‘Ms. Hicks made clear that she understood the president to be serious when he said that he would accept foreign interference in our elections. She also made clear that even she knew that such foreign assistance should be rejected and reported to the FBI.’
In an earlier interview with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos, Trump incredulously admitted that he was open to receiving foreign help digging up dirt on his 2020 election opponent. The ABC News host asked him if he would report a foreign contact to the FBI. He said that he would not, which was an indication of how far this POTUS would go to win the next election. He told Stephanopoulos:
‘I’ll tell you what: I’ve seen a lot of things over my life. I don’t think in my whole life I’ve ever called the FBI. In my whole life. You don’t call the FBI. You throw somebody out of your office, you do whatever you–‘
Stephanopoulos noted that Al Gore called the FBI when he got a stolen briefing book. Trump responded:
‘Well, that’s different. A stolen briefing book. This isn’t a (inaudible). This is somebody who said “We have information on your opponent.” Oh, let me call the FBI. Give me a break, life doesn’t work that way.’
Then, the ABC host said that “The FBI Director says that’s what should happen.” Trump came back with a definitive response:
‘The FBI Director is wrong. Because, frankly, it doesn’t happen like that in life. Now, maybe it will start happening. Maybe today you think differently, but two or three years ago, if somebody comes into your office with oppo research–they call it oppo research–with information that might be good or bad or something, but good for you,
Then, the president continued:
‘bad for your opponent, you don’t call the FBI. I would guarantee you that 90 percent, could be 100 percent of the congressmen or the senators over there, have had meetings, if they didn’t they probably wouldn’t be elected, on negative information about their opponent–‘
Hicks had gone on to work for media mogul Rupert Murdoch’s son in California doing high-level public relations to escape the White House’s legal toxicity. Prior to that, she worked as Trump’s campaign press secretary and then, his White House communications director for 14 months.