Cable news junkies probably recognize Dana Perino as a Fox News political commentator and co-host of The Five. As viewers have relied on her for news over the last few years, they’ve grown curious about her personal life. The former White House staffer gave us one glimpse in 2016 when she interviewed her husband Peter McMahon on Fox News to talk about Brexit.
The exchange piqued the audience’s curiosity. They wanted to know more about Dana Perino’s husband and how the unlikely (but happy) couple found one another. Here are the details we have on McMahon.
Dana Perino Is A Former White House Press Secretary
Dana Perino had her heart set on becoming a journalist, but life had other plans for her. Between 2007 and 2009, she served as the 24th White House Press Secretary under President George W. Bush. She had the honor of being the second female in history to win the role (the first was Dee Dee Myers, who served under President Bill Clinton).
The opportunity came at a time when Perino was actually ready to resign from her job as deputy press secretary. But she went ahead and accepted the promotion, not only fielding tough questions from reporters but taking shots to the face with random flying objects.
After leaving the White House, Perino maintained a busy schedule. She was nominated by President Barack Obama to serve on the Broadcasting Board of Governors, taught political communications at George Washington University’s Graduate School of Political Management, and was briefly an editorial director at Crown Publishing Group.
Perino is now known for joining Fox News as both a hard news reporter and opinion host. She hosted The Daily Briefing with Dana Perino from October 2017 until January 2021, and she’s currently a co-host of the roundtable talk show The Five.
Because she’s a fixture on the network, many viewers are curious to know more about Perino’s personal life. Does a family or love life fit into the conservative commentator’s schedule?
Dana Perino Has Been Married To Peter McMahon Since 1998
Dana Perino and Peter McMahon first met in 1997 on a flight from Denver to Chicago.
“I did a quick scan…accent, good-looking, no wedding ring,” she told an audience at the Hudson Union in 2016. Perino noticed the book he was reading (The Tailor of Panama) and struck up a conversation.
“As we were descending… I said, ‘Okay Lord, I know I asked you to help me find somebody, but he lives in England, he’s 18 years older than me, he’s been married twice before. Did I mention he lives in England? This cannot possibly be it!’”
However, it seems like the random encounter led to true romance for the couple. Perino, who is an obsessive stickler for details, remembers the exact day they flew together to Chicago and commemorates the date on social media:
Perino and McMahon exchanged their contact information at the end of their flight and eventually went on their first date at a movie theatre in New Orleans. They married a year after their first encounter and McMahon became a U.S. citizen in 2006.
Perino And McMahon Are Parents To “America’s Dog”
Though Perino and McMahon never had children together, their dog, Jasper, is a family member some Fox News viewers may be familiar with.
In 2016, Perino released Let Me Tell You about Jasper…: How My Best Friend Became America’s Dog, a lighthearted book about the pup. In the book, she talks about how dogs can bring people together, even if they are political rivals.
McMahon has done both jail time and studio time on behalf of Jasper. In 2006, he received a $25 ticket for failing to keep the dog on a leash. He failed to pay on time and eventually sat in a cell for a day over the citation. And in 2016, he loaned his voice to the audio version of Perino’s book. “The British accent alone makes it worth the purchase,” Perino quipped in an Instagram caption.
It’s clear that McMahon and Perino are happy with the life they’ve built together. Perino told Yahoo Life, “I really think what has helped us have such a strong relationship all these years is I support him in his work, but he’s really allowed me to spread my wings.”