Ralph Northam won't resign, will start a racial 'reconciliation tour'

Virginia Governor Ralph Northam speaks with reporters at a press conference at the Governor's mansion

Virginia Governor Ralph Northam speaks with reporters at a press conference at the Governor's mansion

He said he is monitoring the situation involving Democratic Lieutenant-Governor Justin Fairfax, who is denying two sexual assault allegations, but that he has not made any decisions about who he might appoint as a replacement if Fairfax heeded calls to resign.

The woman claimed Fairfax forced her to perform oral sex while they were students at Duke University in 2000.

"Mr. Fairfax's attack was premeditated and aggressive", Watson's lawyers said. "The two were friends but never dated or had any romantic relationship".

In response to the allegation, Fairfax in his Saturday statement said: "I heard from Dr. Tyson after the 2004 Convention, and she never said or otherwise indicated that our interaction was not consensual or caused her any discomfort".

"Lt. Governor Fairfax has an outstanding and well-earned reputation for treating people with dignity and respect", read a statement from Fairfax's chief of staff and communications director.

Northam, Fairfax and Herring, who are now all facing calls to resign, represent the top three rungs in the line of succession of Virginia's governorship, the fourth being Stephen Newman, the president pro tempore of the Senate of Virginia. Through her lawyers, she said that she was "reluctantly coming forward out of a strong sense of civic duty". Watson allegedly told Adams that the assault happened at a fraternity house: "She said she couldn't speak, but she was trying to get up and he kept pushing her down". "It is demonstrably false".

"I have passed two full field background checks by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and run for office in two highly contested elections with nothing like this being raised before".

Senior Democrats have already called on him to resign, including Hillary Clinton, Joe Biden, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Tim Kaine and Elizabeth Warren.

Ralph Northam said Saturday he'll remain in office and launch a racial reconciliation tour to heal the damage done by a blackface image in his medical school yearbook.

"Allegations of sexual assault need to be taken seriously".

Northam reportedly believes he can "heal" the pain Virginians are feeling and thinks "there's a reason" that the blackface controversy occurred this year-"on the 400th anniversary of the first Africans arriving in Virginia to be sold into slavery". "The time has come for him to step down", state lawmakers said in a statement. Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii), Rep. Jennifer Wexton (D-Virginia), Sen.

Embattled Virginia Lieutenant Governor Justin Fairfax is ousted as chairman from the Democratic Lieutenant Governors Association, as the fallout from his sexual misconduct allegations continues. Consequently, I call on all appropriate and impartial investigatory authorities, including the FBI, to investigate fully and thoroughly the allegations against me by Ms. Watson and Dr. Tyson.

After a week hunkered down in virtual seclusion under mounting pressure to resign, Northam indicated in an email message on Friday to state employees that he planned to keep his post.

The governor of Virginia and state's attorney general are meanwhile both embroiled in racism rows. 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.

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