Northam's Medical School Launches Probe Of Racist Yearbook Photo

04 February, 2019, 00:41 | Author: Gregory Stephens
  • HORRIFIC racist photo found in Democrat Governor Ralph Northam’s yearbook sparks apology

Bagby said he is still in shock, and "reconciling the man that [Northam] was, and the man that he is today".

On Friday, the embattled Governor acknowledged that he was in the photo, but on Saturday he reversed course, saying he was not in the photo.

So far, Northam has resisted calls for his resignation, and in a press conference Saturday said he didn't recall appearing in the photo and that he was neither of the two individuals depicted on his yearbook page, one dressed in blackface and another as a member of the Ku Klux Klan.

"I can't explain the pictures", he says. Northam had claimed to be one of the men in the photo before denying being either. He said he regrets that specific incident and has "learned from it".

In 1984, when the yearbook was published, prominent black activist Jesse Jackson won the state's Democratic primary for president, and voters in 1990 elected the state's first black governor, Doug Wilder.

Both of Virginia's USA senators, Mark Warner and Tim Kaine, joined the dean of Virginia's congressional delegation, Rep. Bobby Scott, in saying in a statement Saturday night that they no longer believe Northam can effectively serve as governor.

"Ralph will do the right thing for the Commonwealth of Virginia", McAuliffe said.

Demonstrators are seen outside the Governor's Mansion in Richmond on Saturday. Virginia is a competitive state that leans Democratic.


Groups calling for his resignation include the Virginia Democratic Party and the Virginia Legislative Black Caucus.

Even if Democratic Gov. Ralph Northam doesn't heed widespread calls to resign, he has lost the support of virtually all of the state's Democratic establishment.

Stephanopoulos pressed Moran on his argument that Northam should stay in office, pointing out that it would be nearly impossible to govern when so many have called on him to step aside.

They added, "Governor Northam has served the people of the Commonwealth faithfully for many years, but the events of the past 24 hours have inflicted huge pain and irrevocably broken the trust Virginians must have in their leaders".

Fairfax said he "cannot condone actions" from Northam's past that "suggest a comfort with Virginia's darker history of white supremacy, racial stereotyping and intimidation". "We can think of no better person than Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax to do so". "Governor Northam should step down, seek forgiveness, and through good deeds earn the respect of the African-American Community".

Northam was pushed repeatedly by reporters to explain why he issued an apology if he wasn't in the photograph.

Northam, standing by his wife Pam, said he believed it was possible some photographs in the yearbook had been switched.

Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren said "Hatred and discrimination have no place in our country and must not be tolerated, especially from our leaders - Republican or Democrat", in a tweet, adding that he "must resign". But after studying the picture and consulting with classmates, Northam said, "I am convinced that is not my picture". Northam was lieutenant governor under McAuliffe. He said he'd never bought or looked at the yearbook before Friday, was in the military during school, and was doing rotations, so didn't participate in the publication. "Instinctively, you know if you put black paint on your face".

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