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Department of Homeland Security official resigns after racist comments

The Department of Homeland Security logo hangs in San Diego during a news conference on October 26, 2017. (John Gibbins/San Diego Union-Tribune/TNS)

A Department of Homeland Security official resigned Thursday after a report revealed he made racist remarks in past radio show interviews.

The Rev. Jamie Johnson, director of the Center for Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships at DHS, said in a 2008 radio show that the black community had turned “America’s major cities into slums because of laziness, drug use and sexual promiscuity.”

DHS spokesman Tyler Houlton told the New York Daily News that acting Secretary Elaine Duke accepted his resignation.

“His comments made prior to joining the Department of Homeland Security clearly do not reflect the values of DHS and the administration,” Houlton said in a statement.

Former DHS Secretary John Kelly appointed Johnson to the position in April. His responsibilities included making regular “deploys to disaster areas throughout the nation to assist FEMA with faith-based outreach and engagement,” according to FEMA’s website.

His resignation comes after a CNN report revealed he had made derogatory comments on the radio from 2008 to 2016.

In another discussion, Johnson said President George W. Bush made a “critical mistake” after the Sept. 11 terror attacks when he called Islam a religion of peace.

“People who want a moderate version of Islam worldwide, the Islam that doesn’t cut peoples’ heads off and cut their fingers off and torture and brutalize and rape, they want a moderate Islam,” he said.

Johnson has apologized for his previous remarks.

“I regret the manner in which those thoughts were expressed in the past, but can say unequivocally that they do not represent my views personally or professionally,” he said in a statement to CNN.


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