For Such a Time as This Summary
For Such a Time as This: My Faith Journey through the White House and Beyond
Kayleigh McEnany describes her path to the White House podium, bringing the reader behind the scenes in the world’s most powerful building and illuminating how faith got her through.
If you would have told me that in the year 2020 I would stand at the White House podium and communicate with the American people as COVID-19 ravaged the globe and violent protests beset the nation, I would have told you that you were crazy. But Jesus Christ had this very plan for my life.
From White House intern to White House press secretary, from production assistant to national television host, from Catholic all-girls high school to Harvard Law School, God has guided my path through uncharted territory.
In For Such a Time as This, I will chronicle my journey to the White House and offer never-before-told anecdotes about what really happened within the Trump administration. You will experience some of the most high-stakes moments in the West Wing right alongside me as I reveal how faith got me through.
About the Author
Kayleigh McEnany is the former White House press secretary and current co-host of Outnumbered on the Fox News Channel. Prior to serving in the White House, Kayleigh worked as the national press secretary for the Trump campaign and was formerly the national spokesperson for the Republican National Committee. Before joining the RNC, Kayleigh worked as a political commentator at CNN.
Kayleigh graduated from Harvard Law School with a Juris Doctor and Georgetown University, Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service with a degree in international politics.
She also studied politics and international relations at Oxford University, St. Edmund Hall. Before law school, she worked at Fox News as an associate producer for Huckabee and appeared as a guest host on ABC’s The View. Kayleigh is a recipient of the Department of Defense Medal for Distinguished Public Service, and the Department of Homeland Security Secretary’s Public Service Award.
For Such a Time as This Introduction
Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.
The Burning Church
We must learn to live together as brothers or we will perish together as fools—Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Beams of sunlight poured through the shutters of my bedroom window. My eyes were closed, but I was already awake as I waited for my official wake-up call—the beautiful little cry of my six-month-old daughter. As young parents, Sean and I had learned that there was no more sleeping in. Baby Blake always made sure Ma-Ma and Da-Da were both up at the crack of dawn!
But I didn’t mind it. I knew my time at home in Florida was dwindling, and I would soon have to head back to our nation’s capital. This was one of my first weekends home since taking the job of White House press secretary, and I tried to cherish every moment.
When I first took the job, I had gone a full three weeks without seeing Blake. I missed her very first Easter. She missed my 32nd birthday. So that morning, I relished the idea of walking under the small crystal chandelier I had purchased for her and scooping her up from her crib, positioned just beneath a glimmering gold sign that read “Let her sleep. For when she wakes, she will move mountains.”
On that Sunday morning, before Blake’s cry could summon her parents, I glanced at the illuminated baby monitor and then down at my phone. I saw a voicemail and a text message from a Tampa Police Department detective. “Sorry to bother you. Can you call me when you get a moment? I have important information to give you,” the text read. I immediately called the detective, a bit alarmed at the early morning messages.
“Kayleigh, are you at your house in Tampa?” he asked me.
“Yes, I am,” I replied.
“We received a tip last night, and we have reason to believe someone is targeting your home, calling for protesters to burn it down. Stay where you are. Don’t leave the house. I am coming your way,” he said.
My stomach sank. In the past, my family had received hate mail and intimidating phone calls. I knew this had to be taken seriously. My immediate concern was for my daughter and my husband. I was about to head to the Orlando airport in just a few hours. How in the world could I leave my family behind knowing that we were now a target?
In spite of my fear, fortunately, my house would not be the building I watched burn on the evening of May 31st. Instead, the world would soon watch a different, historic building, St. John’s Church, lit ablaze as flames climbed high into the night sky during yet another evening of violent riots across the nation. Twenty-four hours after St. John’s burned, I would be standing at the yellow and white church alongside President Trump as he proudly held a Bible in one of the most iconic photos of his presidency.
A few days before the riots began, a nine-minute, twenty-nine-second video depicting the murder of George Floyd filled America’s television screens. I was with President Trump that Wednesday when he first watched the video. We had just landed in Washington, DC, after a disappointing trip to Cape Canaveral, Florida, where we had hoped to watch the launch of SpaceX Dragon Capsule. It would have been the first launch of American astronauts into space in nearly a decade and a much-needed morale boost for a grieving country. Scrubbed due to weather, we landed at Joint Base Andrews (JBA) without the win we had anticipated.
Standing with President Trump in his personal office space on Air Force One, we watched the video of Floyd’s killing together. The president shook his head as he took in the brutal images, indignant over the injustice he was watching. That evening, President Trump announced that he had asked the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Department of Justice (DOJ) to expedite their investigation into the “very sad and tragic death in Minnesota of George Floyd.”
“My heart goes out to George’s family and friends. Justice will be served!” he wrote.1
Despite the Floyd family’s emphatic calls for peace, violent riots besieged the nation, including in my hometown of Tampa.2 By Saturday night, the National Guard had been called on to address the rioting in seventeen states and Washington, DC.3 In Tampa, rioters used crowbars to smash the glass doors of a RaceTrac store, also looting a CVS, an AT&T store, and a jewelry store.4 They lit a Mobil gas station ablaze and set a Champs Sports on fire as it “burn[t] out of control.”5 My family and I watched on our televisions as part of our city went up in flames.
All of these images played in my mind as I waited for the detective to reach my home that last Sunday morning in May. When the detective arrived, he sat at my glass kitchen table and detailed that someone had posted a picture of the Mobil gas station on fire alongside my home address. “Does your family have a place to go? You need to get out of here,” the detective instructed. We did just that. The detective departed, and I began to pack a bag for Blake, tossing her pink plastic bottles and brightly colored clothing into a bag. I felt an urgency to leave.
While I was packing, I received a call from my boss, President Trump. He was rightfully perturbed by a piece in the New York Times. The Times falsely stated that “[a]s several more cities erupted in street protests on Friday night after the killing of George Floyd…. Mr. Trump made no appeal for calm.”6
“That is completely inaccurate,” I told President Trump. “I will try and get it fixed.”
Not only had President Trump called for peace, he spent almost ten minutes of his speech at Kennedy Space Center pleading for unity and calm.7 TEN minutes! I saw it firsthand on Saturday, when Sean, Blake, and I drove to Cape Canaveral, Florida, where we accompanied the president to watch the launch of SpaceX Dragon Capsule. Unlike Wednesday’s scrubbed launch, this one had a fifty-fifty chance of takeoff.8 This time, however, the weather was on our side. We stared up into the sky in amazement as we witnessed the launch of the first new manned spacecraft in about four decades—a huge American triumph.9
But knowing that the nation was also witnessing American carnage in our streets, President Trump made the first portion of his speech a call for peace and justice. He called the death of George Floyd “a grave tragedy” and then said this: “I stand before you as a friend and ally to every American seeking justice and peace and I stand before you in firm opposition to anyone exploiting this tragedy to loot, rob, attack and menace. Healing, not hatred, justice, not chaos, are the mission at hand.”10 Unsurprisingly, none of this made it into the New York Times piece. Instead, a blatant falsehood did, alleging President Trump had not made a call for “calm.”
I made these points to the president during our phone call that Sunday morning and then continued to prepare my family to leave our home. Sean packed up his guns, and I gathered our valuables. We wanted to make sure that we removed our important items in the event our house was ransacked.
As my husband helped to load our bags into his black Ford F-250 truck, I fielded more calls from both the president and the reporter, imploring the writer to change his story to reflect the truth while giving the president regular updates on my progress. I also received a text message from my principal assistant press secretary, Chad Gilmartin: “Let me know if you want Lyndee [my executive assistant] and I to find someone to drive you from the airport home, if you don’t want to take an Uber!”
“I think it should be fine. I land late, at like 9:50,” I replied.
Chad had noticed the protests, some violent, overwhelming DC as evening approached and suggested I find secure transportation, but I buried my head in the sand, dismissing Chad’s message and focusing entirely on making sure my family was secure in Florida. We finally loaded up and left our Tampa home that afternoon. Sean backed out of our driveway, pulling away from our red brick two-story home. We crossed paths with a police car as we left. The officer and patrol car now sat on the street, monitoring our house around the clock.
I sat in the backseat alongside Blake as we began our roughly hour-and-a-half-long drive to the Orlando airport. During the ride, I tried to balance the concern for my family with the demands of my job. Doing everything I could to keep my infant daughter peaceful, I held a pink pacifier to her lips while taking yet another rotation of calls from President Trump and a reporter. The situation had escalated from just a few hours earlier when I tried to correct an inaccurate detail. Now, per an “anonymous source,” a reporter claimed to have information that President Trump had been evacuated to an underground bunker amid violent protests Friday night happening just beyond the White House’s front gate.
The move to the bunker, formally called the Presidential Emergency Operations Center, would evoke comparisons to September 11th, when then-Vice President Dick Cheney was escorted to the protected location.11 This was a big story and a massive leak coming out of the White House. The Friday night bunker movement occurred amid a series of chaotic events that transpired that evening. On the evening the president was moved to the bunker, my husband and I went to dinner with our little one at a nearby restaurant in Tampa.
We sat down with Blake at a beautiful table in the dimly lit steakhouse. At the moment, my biggest concern was keeping my little one quiet and ordering a hard-earned dish of cheesy au gratin potatoes. That quickly changed when I received a text message from a colleague in White House Operations: “Kayleigh – pls call me when you can. All good, but want to fill you in on a situation at WH.”
Soon after, I received a call from Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations Tony Ornato. Protesters had knocked down temporary barricades surrounding the White House. The activity had prompted a brief lockdown of the White House facility, corralling press inside the West Wing along with White House staff. Running to and from my table that evening desperate to find a quiet place, I continued to receive messages from reporters and colleagues, including a call from President Trump. In between calls, I tried my best to grab a bite of bread and salad!
Later that Friday night, protests turned to riots nationwide. Upon returning home from dinner, I turned on my TV and watched violent interactions between rioters and police officers in Minneapolis, Atlanta, New York, and in metro areas across the country. Businesses were looted; buildings set ablaze; and two people even lost their lives, leading one reporter to ask, “Is the United States coming apart?”12
It certainly felt like it.
I thought through the events of the weekend as I rode to the airport on Sunday afternoon. On the way there, I received another message from Chad: “Hey just an fyi – I just tried to Uber downtown and it was incredibly difficult. Roads blocked, shattered glass and spray paint everywhere, protesters in the streets. I could not imagine that the conditions will improve by 10 p.m. tonight – especially since your place is right there.”
I reluctantly obliged to arranging a car, more concerned about my family and the impending bunker story than my mode of transportation upon arriving in DC.
Just before takeoff in the Orlando airport, I received yet another message from Chad: “Kayleigh, this is filmed from the front door of your building. There is a mob at your front door.” Underneath his message was a tweet from a reporter, featuring a twenty-one-second video filmed from the front door of the apartment building I lived in just one block from the White House.13 The video depicted agitators fleeing in the streets as cops ran toward some type of exploding projectile. I was stunned by the images. It looked like total and complete mayhem—just steps from the White House.
We decided that I should not stay in DC amid these violent protests. My assistant, Lyndee, contacted White House Operations, which agreed that I should stay out in Old Town Alexandria, Virginia. My decision was reinforced by an earlier public safety alert issued in the area. “Mayor Bowser is ordering a citywide curfew for the District of Columbia from 11:00 p.m. on Sunday, May 31, until 6:00 a.m. on Monday, June 1. She has also activated the DC National Guard to support the Metropolitan Police Department,” the message read.14
Now aboard my flight awaiting departure, I began to prepare for the next day’s White House press briefing, reviewing the rough draft binder that my staff sent me. I worked through various topics that could come up when President Trump called my phone. Answering with many people in close proximity, I whispered into the phone to the White House operator, “Please, tell President Trump I’m on a flight but will call him when I land.” I spent the rest of the flight anxious to return the president’s call, but I distracted myself by coming up with potential briefing questions to walk through with my team.
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For Such A Time As This PDF
|Posted on||December 7, 2021|
|Page Count||256 pages|
For Such a Time as This PDF Book Free Download - HUB PDF
For Such a Time as This: My Faith Journey through the White House and BeyondKayleigh McEnany describes her path to the White House podium, bringing the reader behind the scenes in the world’s most powerful building and illuminating how faith got her through.
Author: Kayleigh McEnany