Ralph Northam Resists Resigning Over Racist Yearbook Photo, Virginia Dems Say

Feb 03, 2019, 02:01
Ralph Northam Resists Resigning Over Racist Yearbook Photo, Virginia Dems Say

"Though it brings us no joy to do so", said the members of the Democratic State House in a letter, "we must call for Governor Northam's resignation".

Ralph Northam acknowledged Friday that he appears in a photo on his 1984 medical school yearbook page that shows a person in blackface and another wearing a Ku Klux Klan robe.

Northam told the source he was in touch with some of his former Eastern Virginia Medical School colleagues, who said they believed numerous pictures in the yearbook were mixed up.

Ralph Northam did not resign during a news conference Saturday, saying he does not believe he is either person in the racist photo that appeared in his 1984 yearbook.

Ralph Northam had apologised for the racist image on Friday, saying he was one of the people shown in the photo from his 1984 medical school yearbook.

"His actions on display in this photo were racist, unacceptable and inexcusable at any age and any time", McAuliffe said.

"This is a reprehensible picture that is deeply disappointing and I know must come with pain beyond what many of us can even understand", Cooper said in a statement released Saturday.

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He also said that he's "ready to do the hard work of regaining your trust".

"I am simply asking for the opportunity to demonstrate beyond a shadow of a doubt that the person I was is not the man I am today", Mr Northam said. "He's demonstrated that he has a grasp of what we need to do in Virginia, and I think he's going to make an outstanding governor".

The Virginia Legislative Black Caucus posted a statement on Twitter that said of Northam: "We fully appreciate all that he has contributed to our Commonwealth".

RICHMOND, VA. - Democratic Party of Virginia Chair Susan Swecker issued the following statement calling on the immediate resignation of Governor Northam.

Northam called a news conference to fight the allegations against him.

If Northam resigns, current Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax, a Democrat who is only the second African American to win statewide office in Virginia, would be the next governor.

The revelation comes amid a wild week in which Northam, a Democrat, was criticised after he made comments defending a bill that would have lifted restrictions on late-term abortions.

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Mr Northam was elected governor of Virginia in November 2017. He also said Northam had personally reached out to him to express regret. Northam graduated from the school in 1984.

"He should have said that yesterday then", she told the Post.

He said he will not listen to the voices asking him to resign because it would be avoiding an honest conversation and ducking responsibility to reconcile, and asks Virginians to "accept him at his word" that the photo does not depict him.

"But given what was revealed today, it is clear that he can no longer effectively serve as governor", the Virginia Legislative Black Caucus said. One of them is in blackface, or has used paint or makeup to appear black, while the other is dressed in full KKK gear.

The governor's race that Northam won was fraught with racial animosity, with Republican candidates courting Donald Trump's voting base through hardline immigration stances.

Northam, 59, grew up on the Eastern Shore of Virginia in the fishing village of Onancock. Cory Booker (D-NJ) said Americans "should expect more from our elected officials." Sen. "That's not something that you build overnight", Northam told the AP during a 2017 campaign stop while describing his relationship with the black community.

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