White House Press Aide Resigns Over Call to Reporter
WASHINGTON – TJ Ducklow, a White House deputy secretary, resigned on Saturday following reports that he had used abusive and sexist language with a female journalist over his romantic relationship with a journalist from another publication Was working on an article about
The White House press secretary, Jane Saki, announced her resignation in a statement on Saturday evening, the day after saying that Mr. Ducklow would be suspended without payment for a week.
“PsJ accepted TJ Ducklow’s resignation after a discussion with him this evening,” said Ms. Saki, White House Chief of Staff Ron Clann agrees with the decision. “We are committed to striving every day to meet the standard set by the President in treating others with respect and dignity through our words and our actions.”
Mr. Ducklow, 32, served as national press secretary during Mr. Biden’s presidential campaign, frequently engaging with reporters and acting as the campaign’s spokesman. During the transition, Mr. Ducklow served as a spokesman and was named as deputy press secretary.
His quick departure suggests that Mr. Biden was keen to avoid getting his communications office mired in a contentious dispute early in his administration. Ms Saki was asked by several female journalists on Friday how Mr Ducklow could work effectively with journalists.
Resignation is as follows A report by Vanity Fair on Friday An alleged exchange he discovered with Tara Palmeri, a reporter for Politico, about his relationship with Alexis McCond, covered the Biden campaign for the online publication Axios.
According to the account at Vanity Fair, which was later Confirmed by the New York Times, Mr. Ducklow told Ms. Palmery that if she publishes an article on the relationship he would “destroy” her. She also reportedly stated that she was “jealous” of Ms. McCamond and was furthering the story because of that. He used obscene language, according to two people aware of the phone call.
Ms. Pasaki said on Friday that Mr. Ducklow spoke to Ms. Palmery and apologized and later sent a note apologizing again. Ms. Saki also said that White House officials had told senior Politico editors that Mr. Ducklow’s behavior was not acceptable.
When Mr. Ducklow returned to work, he said, he would not be allowed to negotiate with Politico reporters.
“And that, in our view, was an important step to send a – message that we don’t find acceptable,” she said at the time. She also called the one-week suspension a “severe punishment”.
But that situation was not going to last for more than a day.
The rapid change, in part, reflected the red line that Mr. Biden had set for personal conduct in his administration.
On Inauguration Day, the president gave a charge to hundreds of his political members when he administered them the oath, warning that he would set fire to whomever it would offend.
“If you are ever working with me and I hear you disrespect with another colleague, talk to someone, I promise you I will fire you on the spot,” Mr. Biden said said. “No ifs, ands or buts. Everyone deserves to be treated with decency and courtesy. It has been largely missing for the last four years.”
Asked on Friday whether Mr. Ducklow’s behavior met that standard, Ms. Saka said that “it doesn’t meet our standard – it doesn’t meet the president’s standard.” But she refused to say at the time why she should not be sacked.