An Online Gamer Infiltrated The White House Press Corps
A couple of times a week White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki elegantly swats away the false premise questions of Fox News correspondent Peter Doocy, whenever it’s his turn to dive into the briefing room pool. As Politico reported Friday evening, that’s not the only challenge with which she’s been presented behind the lectern.
Four times in recent weeks, members of the White House press corps have relayed questions to Psaki from someone claiming to be a fellow reporter who was not able to be there in the room due to Covid protocols. That person, who goes by the name “Kacey Montagu”, doesn’t actually exist – at least not as an actual reporter.
Since late last year, “Montagu” has taken on the identity of a White House correspondent extraordinaire with a fictional outlet: White House News, shortened in emails to WHN. It does not exist.
To legitimize the effort, “Montagu” created two Twitter handles, which somehow are followed by White House officials and journalists. “Montagu” has posed as a member of White House Correspondents Association, claiming to be a reporter for The Daily Mail. “Montagu” also communicates regularly with top White House reporters and has had several exchanges with White House officials.
But Montagu never joined WHCA and The Daily Mail. There is no Kacey Montagu, except as a digital impersonation of a White House correspondent.
As Politico reported, “Motivation aside, Montagu’s activity is a remarkable illustration of how the online landscape, along with the age of pandemic-related virtual work, has opened up avenues for the mischievous-minded to infiltrate the top echelons of power. What’s perhaps more remarkable is that he or she did it all without raising a solitary eyebrow … until Thursday.”