Late Wednesday night, Department of Housing and Urban Development official Lynne Patton concluded a day’s worth of heated exchanges with reporter April Ryan by calling her “Miss Piggy,” among other things. “I hear #MissPiggys still on a rampage,” she wrote in a since-deleted tweet. “Gee, I must’ve struck a nerve, @AprilDRyan! #BankruptBlogger.” This being the age of social media and screenshots, however, Patton’s attempt to erase the controversial insult from her personal account proved futile as journalists, politicos, and trolls had already copied, pasted, and posted it elsewhere. As a result, Patton apologized.
In separate tweets posted to her personal and federal Twitter accounts, Patton explained why she had deleted the “Miss Piggy” tweet and offered apologies to Ryan. “I deleted my last tweet by choice. No one from this Administration contacted me. It was beneath me & I apologize to @AprilDRyan,” she wrote on her personal account. On her HUD account, she wrote, “Tonight, I made an inexcusable comment on my personal Twitter account that I deeply regret & deleted on my own volition. I sincerely apologize to @AprilDRyan.” Both tweets also included apologies to HUD Secretary Ben Carson and President Trump.
SiriusXM Urban View host Armstrong Williams, a longtime friend of Ryan’s who claimed he had spoken with Carson about the matter, wrote, “No one should be shamed and she has my profound apologies.” He also said “[Carson] tried reaching out to April this morning, but wasn’t able to reach her. He offers his deepest apologies.” In response, Ryan thanked Williams and said she “[wants] to talk with Dr. Carson about this when he has time.”
Prior to Patton’s decision to delete the offending tweet and apologize for it repeatedly, Twitter took notice of the “Miss Piggy” insult. So too did Ryan who, aside from being tagging in the tweet, was also receiving a great deal of support from social media. “Thanks for the support,” she wrote. “For the record I don’t know this woman @LynnePattonHUD and don’t know why my name is in her mouth.”