Alexi McCammond, a political reporter for Axios, recently revealed that she has been in a relationship with the current White House Deputy Press Secretary, TJ Ducklo, since November 2020.
Prior to revealing their relationship, McCammond had been covering the Biden campaign for Axios since 2019, which is how she got to know Ducklo. At the time, Ducklo was working for the campaign as Biden’s press secretary.
Ducklo was a familiar face on news channels throughout 2020 and gained notoriety after exchanges like the one he had with Brett Baier, when Ducklo refused to answer on whether Biden used a teleprompter to answer questions.
It’s unclear how long McCammond and Ducklo might have been involved with each other and what advantage or bias that may have given McCammond prior to making their relationship official in November. McCammond insists that “TJ has not been a source for any story I’ve worked on or in any capacity since we began dating.”
According to Ducklo, they “keep it totally separate. I don’t know what she’s working on and she doesn’t know what I’m working on.”
After McCammond told her bosses at Axios about the relationship, she “asked to be taken off the Biden beat.” While Axios stated that they “stand by her coverage”, they did remove McCammond from the Biden beat. Now, Axios has her covering Kamala Harris.
So to summarize: Axios assigned a star reporter to cover the vice president while knowing that reporter was (and still is) in a relationship with the current White House Deputy Press Secretary. Yet readers are supposed to believe that McCammond holds no bias and her reporting will be completely objective.
The eighth pillar of Axios’s mission statement is: “We will go the extra mile to earn your trust. All employees are asked to refrain from taking/advocating for public positions on political topics.”
How can Axios stand by that statement while at the same time condoning the conflict of interest that one of their political reporters is openly dating a member of the Biden administration?