Holocaust Denier Chuck C. Johnson Met With Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross
Alexander Nazaryan has a piece at Yahoo News about the latest doings by horrible racist troll Chuck C. Johnson (who is NOT ME), including some new information — he tried to meet with Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross last year as his various scam businesses were falling apart and he was losing one lawsuit after another.
And Ross didn’t shut him down; in fact, he encouraged the white supremacist to schedule a time for the meeting with a senior adviser.
“Hi Secretary Ross,” the markedly informal email sent by Johnson that day begins. “Great chatting with you the other day.” Johnson proceeds to say that he would be “speaking before about 30 congressmen on tech issues” in Washington and “would love to meet” with Ross as well.
Ross responded about three hours later, in an email apparently typed from his iPhone. He explained that he had to fly to Wisconsin in order to attend the groundbreaking for a plant opened by Foxconn, the Chinese electronics manufacturer. He urged Johnson to schedule a time for them to meet with Macie Leach, a senior adviser to the commerce secretary.
Ross’s spokesperson says the meeting never took place, for what that’s worth.
As for a face-to-face between Johnson and the former corporate raider, it was not to be. “The requested meeting did not occur,” said Commerce spokesperson Rebecca Glover. She declined to elaborate, or to answer specific questions about the matter.
What, exactly, Johnson and Ross were planning to meet about remains unknown. In a text-message exchange with Yahoo News, Johnson expressed concern that he would be “falsely” accused “of being a troll or worse,” which made him hesitant to “engage with the #fakenews.” Of his exchange with Ross, Johnson would only say it was “a national security matter.”
“A national security matter.” It is to laugh.
There’s more to this story, though, because Johnson didn’t contact Ross with an official government email address — he apparently used a private non-governmental address. And that strongly suggests there’s more here than meets the eye.
“It’s concerning that a reputed Holocaust denier is familiar enough with Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross that he can apparently reach the Secretary via a private email account,” said Charisma Troiano, communications director for Democracy Forward, a progressive group that obtained Ross’s emails through the Freedom of Information Act. “The public deserves to know why.”
Ross’s email address is redacted in the documents reviewed by Yahoo News. However, Democracy Forward had specified in its Freedom of Information request that it sought “all communications sent to or from any nongovernmental email address established, controlled, or used by the Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross.” The back-and-forth with Johnson, therefore, had to have been conducted at least in part via an email address affiliated with Ross but not issued by the federal government.
But in other news, it looks like Johnson may have slimed his way back onto Twitter again, although he’s denying it, of course.
The exchange with Ross came several days after a California superior court rejected Johnson’s bid to have his Twitter ban lifted. (Johnson may have found a way around the ban; shortly after an exchange with Johnson, this reporter was followed on Twitter by @charles46532569, an account purporting to belong to “charles johnson.” The account followed, and shared messages from, accounts associated with several right-wing figures. Johnson denied to Yahoo News that the account was his, replying with an emoji of a sunglasses-wearing visage.)
UPDATE: After publishing our initial story, I learned that Wilbur Ross and Chuck Johnson did, in fact, meet in the summer of 2018. https://t.co/oJhkxQKg0f