Home Politics How Hope Hicks went from Trump confidant to key prosecution witness

How Hope Hicks went from Trump confidant to key prosecution witness

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How Hope Hicks went from Trump confidant to key prosecution witness

Hope Hicks was known as Donald Trump’s guardian, a calming force for the former president who has been by his side for years as a loyal confidant.

He now plays a key role as a witness in his trial. On Friday, Hicks took the stand as a prosecution witness in the New York criminal trial, where he testified against his former boss.

Early in the trial, former National Enquirer tabloid editor David Pecker testified about a conference call arranged by Trump with Hicks and Sarah Huckabee Sanders, who at the time served in the Trump administration and is now governor of Arkansas. The call centered on Playboy Playmate Karen McDougal and an agreement with her to prevent her from talking about her alleged affair with Trump.

“They thought it was a good idea,” Pecker testified about Hicks and Huckabee Sanders.

On the witness stand Friday, Hicks testified that he crafted several possible responses to a Wall Street Journal story about McDougal’s money to maintain his silence and shared them with former Trump fixer Michael Cohen. When she began her testimony, her voice was shaking and she said she was nervous.

He also told the jury how the famous “Access Hollywood” tape was a “damaging event” during the 2016 election cycle.

Hicks became, along with former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski, one of two top staffers during the early days of his 2016 campaign. At the time, Trump was considered a sideshow by the media. , before becoming the dominant leader in the primaries and, later, the Republican Party candidate. While there were multiple changes throughout Trump’s successful candidacy, Hicks always survived, an indication of his closeness to Trump.

Hicks joined the Trump White House as a senior adviser. He was frequently in the Oval Office with the president and maintained a close relationship with Trump’s daughter, Ivanka, and her son-in-law, Jared Kushner, who were also senior White House figures. While other attendees were caught up in infighting and confusion, Hicks largely managed to stay above the fray.

While Trump alternated with several of his top advisers, who rose and fell in his favor, Hicks was almost a constant. His title was senior communications advisor, but that belied his importance. Her real job, those who worked with her say, was managing Trump. Her office was just outside the Oval Office, a reflection of her importance to the former president.

“Hope was one of the president’s most loyal and dedicated advisers,” said Raj Shah, a former Trump White House official. “What separated her from the others was that she was among the few very intelligent agents who had been with him from the beginning. The president instinctively trusted her judgment.”

While many of those in the Trump White House were motivated to advance a policy or personal agenda, those who worked with Hicks say she had one interest: Trump himself.

But that closeness also led her to become involved in her legal problems. Hicks, for example, appeared before the grand jury last year before Trump was indicted.

She also attracted attention in 2018, when it emerged that she was allegedly in a romantic relationship with fellow White House adviser Rob Porter.

That year he left the White House for the West Coast and moved to Los Angeles to work for Fox Corporation. Her friends said she didn’t like being so far from her family and she once again returned to Washington in March 2020 as an advisor to the president. Her vision for her job was to travel with him and provide strategic advice, but it was the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic and her focus turned to helping manage communications for the incoming public health crisis.

Hicks left the White House on January 12, 2021, six days after the deadly Capitol siege and eight days before Trump left office. Hicks said at the time that his departure was planned before the riot.

It later emerged that Hicks had been highly critical of Trump’s conduct surrounding the Capitol riot. The House committee that investigated the attack later released text messages Hicks sent to Ivanka Trump’s chief of staff, Julie Radford, in which she wrote that “in one day (Trump) ended all future opportunities.” that do not include speaking engagements at the local Proud Boys chapter. “

Most recently, Hicks has done strategic communications consulting for the controversial fast fashion retailer Shein, which has recently attracted attention in Washington for its ties to China. During the 2022 midterm elections, Hicks served as an adviser to failed Pennsylvania Senate candidate David McCormick, who is married to former Trump White House official Dina Powell.

“Hope is extremely smart, politically savvy and strategic,” said Hogan Gidley, a former Trump White House official. “He has an incredible ability to read people and read the room at any split second and when it comes to global catastrophes or political infighting, he has a very strong skill set and the ability to offer solid advice and do it selflessly with Donald Trump.” interest in the heart.”

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