Marie Harf

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Marie Harf
Official Harf Photograph.jpg
Marie Elizabeth Harf

(1981-06-15) 15 June 1981 (age 37)
Alma materIndiana University Bloomington
University of Virginia
OccupationTelevision commentator; former U.S. State Department employee
Spouse(s)Joshua Lucas (m. 2012)

Marie Elizabeth Harf (born June 15, 1981) is a political commentator for the Fox News Channel.[1] She has worked as the Senior Advisor of Strategic Communications to U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry at the United States Department of State, leading the Iran nuclear negotiations communications strategy. Harf has also served as Acting Spokesperson and Deputy Spokesperson of the State Department.

Early life[edit]

Harf, daughter of Jane Ax Harf of Granville, Ohio, and James E. Harf of St. Louis, Missouri.[2][3] and a native of Granville, Ohio, graduated from Granville High School in 1999.[4]

She graduated from Indiana University Bloomington with a BA in Political Science with concentrations in Jewish Studies and Russian and Eastern European Studies, and then received her master's degree in Foreign Affairs from the University of Virginia, where her thesis evaluated the prospects for continued regime stability in Saudi Arabia.[5]


Harf began her career at the Directorate of Intelligence at the CIA as an analyst focusing on Middle Eastern leadership issues. She later became the media spokesperson of the CIA.[6] During the 2012 presidential election, she reportedly helped craft U.S. President Barack Obama's national security and communications strategy, and also served as campaign spokesperson on national security issues.[5][6] In June 2013, Harf was appointed Deputy Spokesperson for the Department of State, where she served as deputy under Jen Psaki.[5][6]

Harf attracted controversy for an interview she gave on Hardball with Chris Matthews on February 16, 2015 following the release the day before of a video by the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) showing the beheading of 21 Egyptian Coptic Christians in Libya. In response to questioning from Matthews on the U.S.'s strategy toward ISIS, Harf said, "We cannot kill our way out of this war. We need in the medium to longer term to go after the root causes that leads people to join these groups, whether it's a lack of opportunity for jobs, whether ..." Her critics ridiculed her on social media with the hashtag "#JobsForISIS", which became a top-10 trending topic on U.S. Twitter.[7]

In April 2015, Bloomberg News reported that retiring U.S. Navy Rear Admiral John Kirby would soon be appointed Spokesperson for the Department of State, replacing Acting Spokesperson Marie Harf, who had also interviewed for the position. In 2013, Kirby had also beaten out Harf for the spokesperson position at the U.S. Department of Defense under Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel,[8] thereby retaining that Pentagon position under a serving and experienced military public affairs officer versus a civilian political appointee.[citation needed]

Harf served as Acting Spokesperson until May 13, 2015, and on June 1, 2015, she began a new role as Senior Advisor for Strategic Communications to Secretary of State John Kerry, continuing her work leading the Iran nuclear negotiations communications strategy.[5] Since January 2017, she has been a political commentator for the Fox News Channel.[1]

Personal life[edit]

Harf married Joshua Lucas on April 14, 2012.[2]


  1. ^ a b "Fox News Signs Former State Dept. Spokesperson Marie Harf as Contributor". Archived from the original on 2017-03-14. Retrieved August 16, 2017.
  2. ^ a b "Marie Harf, Joshua Lucas — Weddings". The New York Times. April 15, 2012. Retrieved April 30, 2015.
  3. ^ "Daily Press Briefing". United States Department of State. January 15, 2015. Retrieved March 26, 2015.
  4. ^ Drew Bracken (December 31, 2013). "Granville grad speaks for State Department". The Advocate. Archived from the original on November 11, 2014. Retrieved July 1, 2014.
  5. ^ a b c d "Marie Harf". United States Department of State. Retrieved July 1, 2014.
  6. ^ a b c Josh Rogin (April 30, 2013). "Former Obama spokesperson moving to State". Foreign Policy. Retrieved July 11, 2014.
  7. ^ "State Department on Islamic State: We can't win 'by killing them' — need to get them jobs". The Washington Times. February 17, 2015.
  8. ^ "State Department Gets a Military Messager in Chief". Bloomberg News. April 22, 2015.

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