Defies norms: So many moms-to-be in White House press room during Trump term, they have a name for it

President Donald Trump’s first two years in office appear to have had an unexpected effect on fertility.

A White House correspondent and new mother told the Las Vegas Review-Journal that she has “never seen as many moms” in the White House briefing room as she has under the current administration.

The Las Vegas Review-Journal reported on the phenomenon they labeled the “Trump bump” in a piece on Sunday profiling White House correspondents who are or were pregnant during Trump’s first two years in office. The publication noted that CBS White House correspondent Weijia Jiang is expecting her baby in January. New York Post reporter Marisa Schultz is also pregnant while The Washington Post’s Ashley Parker is on maternity leave.

Newsday’s Laura Figueroa recently returned from maternity leave while the list of women who had babies during Trump’s first two years in office include NPR’s Tamara Keith, CBN’s Jennifer Wishon, CNN’s Pamela Brown, Fox News’ Kristin Fisher, CGTN’s Jessica Stone and NPR’s Ayesha Rascoe.

According to the Las Vegas Review-Journal:

For the second year in a row, the number of pregnancies in the Trump White House press quarters defies all norms. Call it the “Trump bump” — a sign of journalist fecundity that should be the envy of fertility clinics.

In the tight working space and 49-seat James S. Brady briefing room that surround what used to be the White House swimming pool, proof abounds.

 

“I’ve never seen as many moms at the same time,” China Global Television Network’s Jessica Stone said of the Trump-era baby boom.

“We are political journalists who make family planning decisions around election cycles,” NPR’s Tamara Keith said.

Many women were planning the pregnancies between the 2016 and 2022 presidential elections.

“I’ve been pregnant the whole time,” Jiang said. “There were times when I forgot I was pregnant.”

Newsday’s Figueroa revealed she would sometimes have to stand for nearly 90 minutes before and during White House briefings, which were for a while a daily affair with Sarah Sanders, the first press secretary who is a mother. And while Figueroa didn’t score a seat when she was hardly showing a baby bump, Ronica Cleary noted how she wasn’t given any special treatment even though she was close to the end of her pregnancy.

Jiang’s pregnancy was revealed after an exchange with Trump at a New York press conference in September when the president told her to sit down after she repeatedly questioned him about allegations of sexual harassment. Jiang addressed the moment in a tweet in which she announced her pregnancy.

“I was glad (Trump) didn’t treat me different from the other reporters,” she said recently, according to the Review-Journal.

Keith told the Review-Journal that it’s “harder than you think it will be,” but revealed she has used a breast pump on Air Force One. The NPR reporter has even written up instructions for pumping in the White House, noting that in the “pump room” – the space that doubles as office space for the Christian Broadcasting Network – staffers have to exit if a nursing mom enters and asks them to leave.

But Keith is not complaining.

“There are people with hard jobs and inflexible hours. This is not a hardship post. We’re lucky to have these jobs,” she said.

“There’s such a baby boom going on at the White House press corps that we are always on standby for delivering a baby if necessary,” Steve Holland of Reuters told the Review-Journal. “It would be a new theme for us, but hey, we’re open to the challenge.”

Frieda Powers

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