White House makes significant additions to press shop

By Fin Gomez

/ CBS News

Top political stories this week

The White House's communications shop is making some big additions to its roster, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders told CBS News in an interview.

Steven Groves, who currently serves in the White House as assistant special counsel, will be now be deputy press secretary handling issues related to the Department of Justice and legislative affairs. He will oversee the response to congressional investigations into the administration.

Newly emboldened House Democrats have said they will use their subpoena power to investigate the president and his administration. Before joining the White House, Groves served as chief of staff to former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley. He holds legal degrees from Georgetown University and Ohio Northern University.

Sanders said that she has also officially elevated Hogan Gidley to be her second in command as principal deputy press secretary. Gidley has been acting in that role since last year, when former principal deputy press secretary Raj Shah moved to coordinate White House media efforts during the nomination hearings for Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh. Shah left the White House earlier this year to start a media consulting group.

Judd Deere, who was formerly the White House director of media affairs, has been promoted to White House deputy press secretary, where he will focus on topics that include energy, the Department of Housing and Urban Development and NASA. Deere also previously served as White House director of state communications.

Deputy press secretary Lindsay Walters, the longest-serving deputy press secretary, will continue in her role. Walters' areas of expertise include financial topics.

Groves' arrival comes at a particularly important time for the White House as Democrats plan to wield their new subpoena authority to investigate the president's finances and probe Cabinet members. The House Oversight and Reform Committee has already launched a probe into White House security clearances.

This is a developing story and will be updated.

First published on January 31, 2019

© 2019 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved.

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