US Ambassador to New Zealand Scott Brown admitted on Wednesday that he is being investigated by the State Department for telling some guests at a Peace Corps event that they were “beautiful” and remarking to a server that she could make money in the US working as a waitress.
“Through rumor and innuendo, Gail and I have heard there’s an inquiry about my conduct while I was in Samoa,” Brown said in an interview with New Zealand media as he sat next to his wife.
He acknowledged making the controversial comments to a female food server and guests at the July event in Samoa and said he realizes that he should be more culturally aware.
“When we walked into the Peace Corp event we walked in and there was a receiving line and prior to walking they were all like dirty and grungy,” he told the website Stuff. “… We walked in and everyone was dressed to the nines. … Gail and I both walked in and said ‘you guys are beautiful, you look really handsome sir, you guys are great.’ And apparently, somebody took offense to that.”
Brown, who confirmed there’s an official administrative inquiry into his remarks, said he wouldn’t hesitate to tell his children the same thing.
“Absolutely told people they could make great waitresses. I would say that to my kids too, in between jobs, hustling one, two, three jobs. Just get some money in your pocket and get out of there,” he said.
Brown, a former US senator from Massachusetts, was one of the first ambassadors appointed by President Trump. He has been in the post since June.
He said he’s surprised by the complaints but accepted advice that he needs to be more aware before making such comments.
“I was told that, ‘You know, listen, you’re not Scott Brown from Ryan, New Hampshire, anymore, you’re an ambassador and you have to be culturally aware of different cultures, and different sensitivities.’ And I’m always welcoming that kind of advice,” Brown said.
He also said some people at the event disliked Trump and suggested there was an ulterior motive at play.
“Sadly, it’s politics, and it is what is,” Brown told Stuff.
With Post Wires