Conservative radio host Laura Ingraham is under serious consideration to be Donald TrumpDonald TrumpGOP grapples with chaotic Senate primary in Pennsylvania Trump social media startup receives commitment of billion from unidentified 'diverse group' of investors Iran thinks it has the upper hand in Vienna — here's why it doesn't MORE's White House press secretary, according to two sources with direct knowledge.
Trump appreciated Ingraham's loyalty through the campaign. A former white-collar defense attorney and Supreme Court law clerk, Ingraham helped Trump with debate preparation. She also campaigned on his behalf and offered occasional strategic advice.
With the possible exceptions of Sean Hannity, Ann Coulter and Breitbart, no media figure or outlet did more to promote Trump's candidacy than Ingraham.
She used her profile as a Fox News contributor, her nationally syndicated radio show and her website LifeZette.com to advocate on his behalf. Trump also tapped into Ingraham's years of dirt-digging on the Clintons to sharpen his attacks on the Democratic nominee.
Ingraham would not comment for this article. A source familiar told The Hill that she's in contact with people in Trump's inner circle and has expressed interest in the role.
The president-elect and his inner circle hold Ingraham in the highest esteem. They view her as tough, admire her rhetorical skills, and believe she'd powerfully convey Trump's anti-establishment message.
Selecting Ingraham would send a signal that Trump has no interest in softening his relationships with the Republican leaders in Washington, D.C.
Trump isn't the first insurgent outsider candidate who Ingraham has helped. In 2014, she endorsed Dave Brat when he primaried then-House Majority Leader Eric CantorEric Ivan CantorRepublicans eager to take on Spanberger in Virginia Virginia emerging as ground zero in battle for House majority McAuliffe's loss exposes deepening Democratic rift MORE (R-Va.). Brat went on to defeat Cantor in an astonishing upset win –– due in large part to Ingraham's enthusiastic backing.
Another debate going on in the transition planning is whether Trump should pick Republican National Committe Chairman Reince Priebus or his campaign CEO Steve Bannon for chief of staff.
Some conservative grassroots activists, including Tea Party leader Jenny Beth Martin, have publicly warned Trump against picking Priebus because they view him as part of the "establishment" and thus in conflict with Trump's promise to "drain the swamp" in Washington.
Bannon, by contrast, pushed the envelope. As chairman of Breitbart News he built a home for the populist nationalist philosophy that underpinned Trump's presidential campaign.
If Trump picks Bannon it would be a rebuke to the Republican leadership in D.C. Bannon views House Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanNo time for the timid: The dual threats of progressives and Trump Juan Williams: Pelosi shows her power Cheney takes shot at Trump: 'I like Republican presidents who win re-election' MORE as a "globalist" enemy and has given Breitbart reporters direct orders to destroy Ryan.