Alexi McCammond, girlfriend of disgraced former White House aide T.J. Ducklo, will not be taking over as editor in chief of Teen Vogue. The journalist said Thursday that she and the publication's parent company, Condé Nast, have "agreed to part ways" after staff members raised concerns over her "racist and homophobic tweets" from 2011, when McCammond was a teenager.
McCammond, who was set to start the new gig on March 24, had already apologized years ago for the offending tweets, in which the journo expressed annoyance at a "stupid asian" teaching assistant, and her desire to "not wake up with swollen asian eyes."
That didn't stop a group of more than 20 Teen Vogue staffers from writing a letter to Condé Nast management and issuing a public statement asserting their grievance and forcefully rejecting the sentiments expressed in McCammond's old tweets.
The statement prompted McCammond to apologize again in a lengthy memo to Teen Vogue staff. "I’m beyond sorry for what you have experienced over the last twenty-four hours because of me," she wrote. "You’ve seen some offensive, idiotic tweets from when I was a teenager that perpetuated harmful and racist stereotypes about Asian Americans. I apologized for them years ago, but I want to be clear today: I apologize deeply to all of you for the pain this has caused."
Days later, McCammond issued a third, even lengthier statement of contrition. "I've apologized for my past racist and homophobic tweets and will reiterate that there's no excuse for perpetuating those awful stereotypes," she wrote in a statement posted on Twitter. "I am so sorry to have used such hurtful and inexcusable language. At any point in my life, it's totally unacceptable."
It appeared initially as though McCammond's multiple apologies would save her job. A Condé Nast spokesperson told the Daily Beast the decision to hire McCammond was based on "the values, inclusivity and depth she has displayed through her journalism," while noting that she had taken "responsibility for her social media history and apologized."
Several days later, the New York Post reported that the company's chief content officer, Anna Wintour, was "adamant about keeping [McCammond] even though she’s getting pushback internally." As is often the case in journalism these days, the internal pushback ultimately prevailed. McCammond apologized for a fourth time in her statement on Thursday.
"I should not have tweeted what I did and I have taken responsibility for that," McCammond said. "I hope to have the opportunity to re-join the ranks of tireless journalists who are shining light on the issues that matter every single day." McCammond worked as a reporter for the news blog Axios before accepting the position at Teen Vogue.
As noted in the Daily Beast, the 27-year-old McCammond "was heralded as a rising political star among the D.C. press corps for her headline-grabbing stories about the Trump White House and the 2020 presidential campaign, which garnered her an award from the National Association of Black Journalists in 2019 and frequent appearances as a contributor on MSNBC."
The debacle at Teen Vogue played out just weeks after People magazine published a fawning profile of McCammond's relationship with Ducklo, who at the time was serving as White House deputy press secretary.
The D.C. power couple's coming-out party didn't last long. Days after their relationship was lauded in People, reports surfaced that would ultimately cost Ducklo his job at the White House. He was alleged to have angrily berated a female journalist, whom he threatened to "destroy," after she requested comment for a story on the couple's relationship.
Ducklo, who has worked for some of America's most notorious perverts, including Matt Lauer, Mark Halperin, and former senator Chris Dodd (D., Conn.), was widely criticized for the misogynist tirade. The White House took no action after learning of the incident in January. When it became public weeks later, Ducklo was suspended without pay. This appeared to violate President Joe Biden's pledge to fire "on the spot" any staff member who treated others with "disrespect."
Ducklo resigned from the White House the next day. "No words can express my regret, my embarrassment, and my disgust for my behavior," he said in a statement.
All told, it was a precipitous decline and fall for the couple. Ducklo and many others had applauded the announcement of McCammond's new job running Teen Vogue. "So proud. And so well deserved ❤️❤️," Ducklo tweeted on March 5. Less than two weeks later, McCammond would be canned as well, albeit without any reasonable justification. Wokeness is a helluva drug.