HUD official apologizes for calling journalist 'Miss Piggy'

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Story highlights

  • The comment was part of a longer Twitter spat between the two
  • HUD Secretary Ben Carson offered his apologies to the journalist

Washington (CNN)A Housing and Urban Development official with strong ties to the President has apologized for calling a member of the press "Miss Piggy" on Twitter Wednesday night.

"I hear #MissPiggys still on a rampage. Gee, I must've struck a nerve, @AprilDRyan! #BankruptBlogger," Lynne Patton, the HUD administrator for a region which encompasses New York and New Jersey, tweeted from her personal account on Wednesday.
The now-deleted tweet was aimed at April Ryan, the Washington bureau chief of American Urban Radio Networks who also is a CNN political analyst.
    Later that evening, she said she deleted the tweet "by choice."
    "No one from this Administration contacted me. It was beneath me & I apologize to @AprilDRyan. My parents raised me to respect others & I regret my response. I apologize to them, @SecretaryCarson & the Trump family. They deserved better," she wrote.
    The deleted tweet was part of a larger Twitter spat between the two that began on Tuesday.
    HUD did not respond to CNN's request for comment.
    Patton has had close ties to President Donald Trump and his family for years. Prior to HUD, she had worked with the Trumps since 2009, taking on roles with the Trump family and the Eric Trump Foundation. On the campaign trail, she assisted Trump with minority outreach and spoke at the Republican National Convention.
    Armstrong Williams, a longtime confidant of HUD Secretary Ben Carson, said Thursday that Carson "was deeply disappointed by what occurred" and offered his apologies to Ryan.
    "Thank you," Ryan tweeted Williams. "I want to talk with Dr Carson about this when he has time today!"