'She doesn't have a racist bone in her body': Ex-colleague comes to defense of 27-year-old Teen Vogue editor who was forced to resign over anti-Asian tweets she wrote as a teenager

 A former colleague of ousted Teen Vogue editor-in-chief Alexi McCammond is coming to the journalist’s defense after she was forced to step down over staffers’ objections to decade-old tweets mocking Asians and homosexuals.

Jonathan Swan, the chief national correspondent for news site Axios who worked alongside McCammond for four years, told Fox News on Friday that McCammond’s apology should have sufficed and she should have been allowed to keep her job.

McCammond began working as a political reporter for Axios in 2017. While covering the Biden campaign last year, she developed a romance with TJ Ducklo, a Biden press aide. 

She then informed her bosses at Axios, who reassigned her to cover Kamala Harris. Ducklo quit the Biden press shop after he made sexist and threatening remarks to a Politico reporter who asked him about his relationship with McCammond.

Earlier this month, it was announced that McCammond would take over as the new editor-in-chief of Teen Vogue, but staffers at the online publication mounted fierce resistance to the move over decade-old tweets in which she disparaged Asians. 

‘I was just really sad to see this happen,’ Swan told Fox News.

‘I worked with her for four years. She doesn't have a racist bone in her body.

‘If we can't as an industry accept somebody's sincere and repeated apologies for something they tweeted when they were 17 years old, what are we doing?’

Swan added that his employers at Axios didn’t fire McCammond after she first apologized for the tweets in 2019. 

He said McCammond, a 27-year-old black woman, is an ‘advocate for anti-racism.’

Axios national correspondent Jonathan Swan
Former Teen Vogue editor-in-chief Alexi McCammond

Jonathan Swan (left), the chief national correspondent for news site Axios who worked alongside Alexi McCammond (right) for four years, told Fox News on Friday that McCammond’s apology should have sufficed and she should have been allowed to keep her job as editor-in-chief of Teen Vogue

‘I was upset to see this because it really is just a very stark example of if we can't allow ourselves to forgive people when they did something or said something or tweeted something when they were 17 years old, and there is no indication in their current professional lives that they harbor these views, not a single indication, I don't know what we're doing here really,’ he said.

Swan’s comments on Fox News echoed his tweets from Thursday. Just after McCammond announced she was stepping down, Swan tweeted: ‘I’ve worked with @alexi for four years. I know her well and can say this unequivocally: The idea she is racist is absurd. 

'Where the hell are we as an industry if we cannot accept a person’s sincere and repeated apologies for tweets when they were a teenager?' 

Other prominent media figures came to McCammond’s defense, including CNN’s Abby Phillip, who tweeted that the ousted journalist is ‘obviously not who she was when she wrote those tweets.’

‘I'm sorry to see that she won't be moving forward in this position,’ Phillip tweeted.

‘It's beyond fair to demand true remorse and accountability, but Alexi demonstrated those things and I wish she'd been given a chance.’


Political pundit Bill Kristol tweeted: 'In what world does it make sense that Alexi McCammond is out of a job and Andrew Cuomo still has his?' 

Cuomo, the governor of New York, has been accused by several women of sexual harassment. The governor has denied the allegations.

Bestselling author Malcolm Gladwell tweeted: 'The criminalization of black adolescent behavior is one of the bedrock principles of American racism. 

'White people get a childhood and the privilege to make mistakes in the name of moral development. 

'Black people don’t.'

Gladwell later tweeted: 'Question for Condé Nast HR: have they also scrutinized the childhood statements of their white editors?' 

Teen Vogue editor Alexi McCammond has resigned over racist, anti-Asian tweets she wrote as a teenager surfaced online
It emerged on Thursday that Conde Nast boss Anna Wintour knew about the tweets but gave McCammond the job anyway

McCammond (left) on Thursday resigned over racist, anti-Asian tweets she wrote as a teenager surfaced online. It emerged on Thursday that Conde Nast boss Anna Wintour (right) knew about the tweets but gave McCammond the job anyway

Teen Vogue Editor in Chief issues apology for racist tweets
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Swan replied to Gladwell's tweet, writing: 'Great question!' 

Condé Nast is the media empire whose holdings include Vogue, Teen Vogue, Vanity Fair, The New Yorker, GQ, and other outlets.

Political pollster Frank Luntz tweeted: 'Another career destroyed by the #woke mob. Alexi McCammond is a brilliant reporter and even a progressive, but she has been canceled for stuff she tweeted nearly a decade ago in college. The Robespierre Reign of Terror continues…' 

Earlier on Friday, it was learned that Anna Wintour tried to save McCammond but could not stop her from being forced out less than two weeks after taking the job.

McCammond, 27, was fired over anti-Asian tweets she wrote as a teenager, in 2011, which surfaced online and cost Conde Nast a seven-figure ad campaign. 

McCammond's resurfaced tweets include one in which she wrote: 'Googling how to not wake up with swollen Asian eyes'.

Another now-deleted tweet read: 'Give me a 2/10 on my chem problem, cross out all of my work and don't explain what I did wrong… thanks a lot stupid Asian T.A. you're great.'

Wintour, the chief content officer and the global editorial director of Vogue, was aware of the decade-old racist tweets and discussed them with leaders of color at Condé Nast before the job was offered, The New York Times reported.

They felt she had learnt from her mistakes, but they were not aware of homophobic tweets or a photo, also from 2011, that was recently published by a right-wing website showing her in Native American costume at a Halloween party. The vetting process did not turn up the additional material because it had been deleted, the executive added. 

Wintour tried to build support for the would-be Teen Vogue editor, the paper said, and included her in team meetings.

McCammond met one-on-one with staff, to try and ease their concerns, and explained her actions in a note.

'You've seen some offensive, idiotic tweets from when I was a teenager that perpetuated harmful and racist stereotypes about Asian Americans,' she wrote in a note to her new colleagues, obtained by The Daily Beast

'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.' 

Condé Nast's human resources department also met with the Teen Vogue staff, and the staff were reminded of a company policy requiring them to check with the communications team before making public statements. 

The staff members were also told they should keep their criticisms 'in the family' - further adding to their anger.

On Monday a meeting, scheduled for Wednesday with Wintour and top Vogue executives, was abruptly canceled and not rescheduled, indicating to McCammond that her position was no longer tenable. 

The Daily Beast reported that Condé Nast management called a meeting with staffers for Thursday afternoon to discuss the new editor's exit.  

The offensive tweets were deleted in 2019, when McCammond was working as a political reporter for Axios.

They resurfaced after she was named as the new editor on March 5. 

It's unclear if she ever started the job. 

On March 9, the tweets had gone viral and she was apologizing for them. 

Conde Nast initially stood by her and allowed her to keep the position. 

Staffers were irate that she was allowed to keep her job and said it sent the wrong message during a time of increased attacks on Asian Americans, but she stayed on. 

They also complained that she was inexperienced, having never worked as an editor or manager before, and that there were other black women within Conde Nast who would have been better suited to the job. 

They wrote an open letter demanding that she be replaced and also complained directly to CEO Robert Lynch.

Beauty store chain Ulta then pulled a seven-figure ad campaign with Teen Vogue over the scandal. There were also talks among sales teams that it could cost the company even more in advertising revenues. 

It has also emerged that in an email to staff around the same time Conde Nast HR boss Stan Duncan revealed that Anna Wintour and CEO Roger Lynch knew about the decade-old racist tweets but hired her anyway. 

On Thursday, McCammond tweeted that she and the company were 'parting ways'. 

It sparked a mixed reaction - some said it was appropriate given what she'd done but others called it cancel culture gone too far. They criticized Conde Nast for seemingly hanging her out to dry.  

'I want to be fully transparent with you about our decision-making process regarding her appointment. 

'When Alexi was was a teenager she made racially charged statements on social media about Asian people.

'Alexi was straight forward and transparent about these posts during our interview process and through public apologies,' HR boss Stan Duncan said in an internal memo. 

'Given her previous acknowledgement of these posts and her sincere apologies, in addition to her remarkable work in journalism elevating the voices of marginalized communities, we were looking forward to welcoming her into our community.

'In addition, we were hopeful that Alexi would become part of our team to provide perspective and insight that is underrepresented throughout the media.

'We were dedicated to making her successful in this role and spent time working with her, our company leadership and the Teen Vogue team to find the best path forward. 

'To that end, after speaking with Alexi this morning, we agreed that it was best to part ways, so as to not overshadow the important work happening at Teen Vogue,' he went on. 

In a Twitter statement on Thursday, McCammond said she and the company had decided to 'part ways'. 

McCammond's resignation also comes after her boyfriend was fired from his role as  Deputy White House Secretary for threatening to 'destroy' a female reporter if they exposed their relationship.

Before working at Vogue, McCammond was working as a political reporter at Axios. 

McCammond is dating disgraced former Deputy White House Secretary TJ Ducklo who was fired after threatening to destroy a reporter if she exposed their relationship. Before working at Vogue, McCammond worked at Axios

McCammond is dating disgraced former Deputy White House Secretary TJ Ducklo who was fired after threatening to destroy a reporter if she exposed their relationship. Before working at Vogue, McCammond worked at Axios

'She doesn't have a racist bone in her body': Ex-colleague comes to defense of 27-year-old Teen Vogue editor who was forced to resign over anti-Asian tweets she wrote as a teenager 'She doesn't have a racist bone in her body': Ex-colleague comes to defense of 27-year-old Teen Vogue editor who was forced to resign over anti-Asian tweets she wrote as a teenager Reviewed by STATION GOSSIP on 08:02 Rating: 5

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