Ralph Northam: As a doctor, I can help Virginia heal

Reuters

"I want to stand here in that truth and restate that my truth, as well as the truth of Dr. Tyson and Ms. Watson, should be fully investigated and thoroughly assessed", Fairfax's statement said, also calling on the FBI to "investigate fully and thoroughly the allegations against me". From there Northam claimed that because he has "strength", "courage" and "a moral compass", he was "not going anywhere". "I've been in some very hard situations, life-and-death situations, taken care of sick children". Life and death situations taking care of sick children.

"Right now, Virginia needs someone that can heal". As a doctor, he said there's "no better person to do that".

The identity of the men's basketball player facing the allegation is not known. But the practice, in which blacks have often been depicted in tattered clothing and demeaned intellectually, has for decades been considered as a racist characterization.

Despite the controversy this week, Justin Fairfax continued to fulfill his duties as lieutenant governor - such as presiding over Senate sessions at the Capitol.

There have been wide calls for Fairfax, an African-American, to quit in the wake of the assault allegations, but he has refused and instead called for an investigation. Fairfax did not deny he had an encounter with Tyson, but said it was consensual and the accusation was an attempt to smear him when he was poised to become governor of Virginia. "And I believe Lieutenant Governor Justin Fairfax must resign".

Northam maintained that he is not in the photo - which shows one person in blackface and another in KKK robes - but could not say why he initially took responsibility for it.

Paralegal Linda Ginsberg, who came to the area from Boston 12 years ago, said that what Northam had done years ago was "incredibly insensitive and stupid" - but shouldn't affect his ability to perform in his current role. It has remained unclear exactly how the photo ended up in the yearbook of the Eastern Virginia Medical School and on Northam's page.

Northam has admitted to wearing blackface while impersonating Michael Jackson at a 1984 dance contest, but has denied that he was in a yearbook photograph depicting a man in blackface sharing a beer with a hooded klansman. I also plan to reach out to our colleges and universities and talk about sensitivity training.

On Saturday night, the lieutenant governor signaled no intention to resign and defended himself against the claims.

The series of scandals began at the start of the month, when racist imagery was unearthed in Gov. Ralph Northam's 1984 medical school yearbook.

Northam said that while the state has made progress since the first slaves arrived at what is now Fort Monroe in 1619, work remains to address the racial inequities.

Many are struggling to come to grips with a list of nagging questions: Do they forgive the Democrats, keep Republicans out of power and demand the governor get serious about racism?

The Democratic governor told Gayle King on CBS' Face the Nation that, "Yes, I have thought about resigning".

Party elders Sen. Mark Warner and Rep. Bobby Scott said Fairfax should resign if the allegations against him were true. "A lot of individuals across Virginia have been hurt", Northam said in the 1813 Executive Mansion.

The blackface-related stories in particular, said Deborah McDowell, director of the university's Carter G. Woodson Institute for African American and African Studies, should be treated less as isolated incidents and more as representative of a wider culture.

A lawyer for Meredith Watson, 39, said in a statement that Fairfax had attacked Watson in 2000.

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