The embroiled controversy surrounding Democratic Virginia Governor Ralph Northam and his racist yearbook photo has not seemed to die down, despite delivering an incredibly weird press conference on Saturday afternoon.
The presser came after members of Northam’s party called on him to resign. National icons in the Democrat Party, like former Vice President Joe Biden and Democrat Senator Kamala Harris, asked him to resign as well as Virginia state officials including former Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe and Democratic members of both state legislatures. The Democrat Black Caucus turned against Northam and the state’s Democrat Party officially called on him to resign.
Nearly everywhere Northam turns, someone is demanding his resignation.
So what does the state’s Lieutenant Governor Justin Fairfax think?
As the Washington Examiner reports, Fairfax finally broke his silence on the situation after Northam’s press conference but stopped just shy of explicitly saying he should resign.
From the report:
Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax, D-Va., broke his silence in the wake of a scandal engulfing Gov. Ralph Northam on Saturday but pointedly refused to say his boss should stay as governor, suggesting the state needed “leaders with the ability to unite” Virginians.
In a statement, Fairfax said his great-great-great grandfather was enslaved and that Northam’s photo “strikes particularly close to home.”
“Like so many Virginians, I am shocked and saddened by the images in the Governor’s yearbook that came to light yesterday. They are an example of a painful scourge that continues to haunt us today and holds us back from the progress we need to make,” Fairfax said in the statement.
“As we commemorate 400 years since the first enslaved Africans were brought to Virginia, it is painful to experience such a searing reminder of the modern legacy of our nation’s original sin. And, as someone whose great-great-great grandfather was enslaved in Virginia, this episode strikes particularly close to home,” the lieutenant governor continued.
“The Governor needed to apologize, and I am glad that he did so. He also reached out to me personally to express his sincere regrets and to apologize.”
“I have worked closely with Ralph Northam over many years. He has been a friend to me and has treated my family and me with hospitality and respect,” Fairfax said.
And, “While his career has been marked by service to children, soldiers, and constituents, I cannot condone the actions from his past that, at the very least, suggest a comfort with Virginia’s darker history of white supremacy, racial stereotyping, and intimidation.”
“At this critical and defining moment in the history of Virginia and this nation, we need leaders with the ability to unite and help us rise to the better angels of our nature,” Fairfax concluded. “I remain committed to serving and helping to heal the Commonwealth moving forward. Now more than ever, we must make decisions in the best interests of the people of the Commonwealth of Virginia.”
Note: The author of this article has included commentary that expresses an opinion and analysis of the facts.