Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has officially named former Fox News contributor Morgan Ortagus as the new State Department spokeswoman.
He announced her appointment in a tweet, saying, ”Her experience as an intelligence analyst & public affairs officer in foreign policy & national security will benefit America. She’ll lead our fight to communicate & defend U.S. foreign policy. Welcome to our team Morgan.”
In a tweet of her own, Ortagus thanked both Pompeo and President Donald Trump, who used to be the regular target of her criticism, for the opportunity “to represent [the State Department] and the American people,” and said she was looking forward to “helping tell America’s story to the world.”
The former Fox News contributor will replace Heather Nauert, who led the State Department when she was nominated by the President to become the new U.S. ambassador to the UN.
Only a day before she was named spokeswoman, a report said that during the 2016 Republican primary, Ortagus was critical of Trump and his foreign policy stance. In a Fox News radio interview at the time, she said Trump’s mocking of a disabled reporter was “disgusting.”
“You have somebody who makes fun of people with mental and physical disabilities. That’s disgusting; there’s no other way around it. Quite frankly, I don’t want someone with the temperament of a middle school pubescent boy in the president’s office,” Ortagus noted back then.
However, despite her previous criticism of the President, Ortagus was the top pick for the position due to her extensive foreign policy experience. She also has a significant communications experience, most notably as a spokesperson with the U.S. Agency for International Development under President George W. Bush.
She later worked as an intelligence analyst for the Treasury Department during the Obama administration and spent a year in Saudi Arabia as the deputy Treasury attache.