U.S. ambassador to Britain denies making racist, sexist remarks

Woody Johnson, U.S. Ambassador to Britain, with Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo
Woody Johnson, the U.S. Ambassador to Britain, with U.S. Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo on July 21 in London.
(Matt Dunham / Associated Press)

The U.S. ambassador to Britain has taken to Twitter to defend his reputation, rejecting allegations that he made insensitive remarks on race and gender.

Robert “Woody” Johnson’s comments on the social media platform Wednesday followed a CNN report that he had been the subject of an internal State Department investigation for alleged racist and sexist comments to embassy staff and that he sought to use his post to further President Trump’s personal business interests.

“I have followed the ethical rules and requirements of my office at all times,” Johnson tweeted. “These false claims of insensitive remarks about race and gender are totally inconsistent with my longstanding record and values.”

CNN reported that Johnson, an owner of the New York Jets football team and a confidant of Trump, questioned why the Black community wishes to celebrate Black History Month and made generalizations about Black men. He also allegedly made “cringe-worthy” comments about women’s looks, the report said.


CNN’s report also alleged that Johnson lobbied politicians to bring golf’s Open Championship to Trump’s Turnberry course in Scotland.

A State Department spokesperson told CNN that Johnson was “a valued member of the team” and that it looked “forward to him continuing to ensure our special relationship with the U.K. is strong.”