CNN Chyron Labels Dem Ralph Northam as a Republican While Airing Apology for Blackface Photo

On Friday, CNN used the wrong party label in identifying Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam as he faced criticism over a yearbook photo that featured one man wearing a Ku Klux Klan (KKK) outfit and another in blackface.

CNN host Anderson Cooper correctly referred to Northam as a Democrat, but his show’s chyron read “(R)” for Republican when it aired his apology, the Washington Examiner reported.

Watch the video below:

The clip lasted less than 15 seconds but caused quite an uproar on social media. While it’s unclear what exactly happened, Republican National Committee (RNC) Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel called on CNN to apologize to its viewers.

“How does this happen? CNN should apologize to their viewers,” she tweeted with a “ hashtag in an attempt to mock the tagline that the network uses to claim that it focuses on objectivity.

As of writing this, neither CNN’s public relations account nor its primary account on Twitter had posted anything about the incident.

Northam’s yearbook photo was just the latest controversy he encountered during the week and seemed to deal yet another blow to his party’s public image.

Many on social media argued that if Northam was actually a Republican, it would have received a lot more attention.

Although at least one Democrat initially defended Northam, many left-leaning individuals and organizations either criticized his actions or called for his resignation.

As IJR Red reported earlier, Northam initially apologized but reportedly changed his tune while speaking with Democratic lawmakers.

“I am deeply sorry for the decision I made to appear as I did in this photo and for the hurt that decision caused then and now,” Northam said in his initial apology.

He also posted a video apology, the one that Cooper aired on his show.

Watch the video below:

But later, he reportedly told other Democrats that he wasn’t sure if he was one of the men in the offensive photo.


  1. Can you imagine the UPROAR if this had been a Republican and Fox had him as a Dem in their chyron? NO, SERIOUSLY take a second a really think about the crap that would carry on for months.

    1. Since it’s cnn and a dim, it will be over in a few blinks of the eye.

    2. Had it been a Republican, you know he would have been politely forced to resign immediately if not sooner. Different strokes for different folks.

  2. CNN knows that in the wake of its fake news forgiveness will come if requested, contrite or not; permission, not so much. So when will they even acknowledge the chyron is fake? Funny how “mistakes” target and influence certain minds and behavior.

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