T.J. Ducklo, the White House deputy press secretary who threatened to “destroy” a female journalist seeking comment for a story about his ethically problematic relationship with an Axios reporter, will keep his job despite President Joe Biden’s warning that staff members who treat others with “disrespect” would be fired “on the spot.”
White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Ducklo will receive a one-week suspension without pay after his “heated conversation” with Politico reporter Tara Palmeri, which occurred on Jan. 20, was made public for the first time in a Vanity Fair article published Friday.
Ducklo reportedly made derogatory and misogynistic comments toward Palmeri after she reached out to his girlfriend, Axios reporter Alexi McCammond, for comment on a story about the couple’s relationship. Ducklo did not, for whatever reason, lash out at Palmeri’s male colleague who had reached out to him for comment.
According to Vanity Fair, the conversation went off the rails when Ducklo accused Palmeri of being “jealous” of his relationship with McCammond, and threatened to ruin her reputation if she published the story. “I will destroy you,” he said. Politico published the story on Tuesday, a day after People magazine ran a sympathetic profile of the D.C. power couple.
Ducklo’s misogynistic outburst is even more problematic considering his history of employment. His role as Biden’s deputy press secretary is not the first time Ducklo has flacked for someone accused of sexual assault. read more