Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam would really appreciate it if people would stop asking him about his racist yearbook.
As IJR reported in February, a racist photograph from Northam’s medical school yearbook resurfaced. The photo showed two men, one in blackface and one in a Ku Klux Klan robe. Northam originally apologized for the photos, but he then turned around and claimed he wasn’t in the photo.
The governor admitted to wearing blackface while competing in a Michael Jackson dance competition in a press conference in which he also joked about the difficulties of removing shoe polish from one’s face and nearly attempted to demonstrate his moonwalk.
Watch Northam’s press conference:
— CNN (@CNN) February 2, 2019
Shortly after Northam admitted to wearing blackface, Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax was accused of sexual assault, and state Attorney General Mark Herring also admitted to wearing blackface, leaving the top three Democrats compromised. None of them ended up leaving their positions.
In May, Northam’s alma mater announced that it had done an investigation into the photos and couldn’t prove that the governor was in either of the pictures. As IJR previously reported, Northam claimed he couldn’t be in either of the pictures because the person in blackface had “larger legs” and the person in the Klan robe was too short.
Northam believes that is solid evidence and wants reporters to move on from the racist yearbook picture and the blackface admission to focus on his gun control efforts.
Josh Rosenthal, a reporter with Fox 5 DC, asked Northam about the photos and was told that the people of Virginia have “turned the page” on that scandal.
Watch Northam’s interview:
Virginia Governor Ralph Northam on blackface scandal: “We’ve turned the page.”
Today I asked Northam if he feels as though he owes it to the people of Virginia to definitively say who’s in racist photo + how it ended up on his personal yearbook page. Here’s his answer 👇👇👇 pic.twitter.com/aP1hjIOt2a
— Josh Rosenthal (@JoshRosenthalTV) June 5, 2019
“I regret that. I have addressed that, but today, we are talking about gun violence and how to save lives in Virginia. […] We’ve turned the page. Virginians want to move forward. They want a leader, a leader such as me, that has passed Medicaid expansion in Virginia.”
Rosenthal pushed Northam on his claim that “Virginians want to move forward,” noting that many have not. The governor didn’t appreciate the question.
“I think they need to watch what’s going on in Virginia,” he told Rosenthal. “Again, we’re leading Virginia, good things are happening, so it’s time to move forward.”