BUT APOLOGIZES FOR “PAST MISTAKES”
by Sharon Rondeau
(Feb. 2, 2019) — On Saturday afternoon, Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam spoke at a press conference at the governor’s mansion in Richmond to address the controversy over a photo depicting a person in blackface and another in a Ku Klux Klan outfit under his name in a 1984 medical-school yearbook.
Northam began at approximately 2:37 p.m. by thanking attendees for coming and then claimed he has concluded that he does not appear in either position in the offensive photo. At the same time, Northam admitted to having made “mistakes” in his youth, including attending a party where he blackened his face during a portrayal of Michael Jackson.
Northam stated the year of that gathering as “1984” and the location as San Antonio, TX.
Early in his remarks, Northam claimed that when his staff showed him the photo on Friday, it was the “first time” he saw it. He said he bears responsibility for its appearance under his name in the yearbook despite his not having participated in its “production.”
Northam conceded that some may not believe his account today given that on Friday, he apologized twice for the photo while admitting that he appeared in it.
During the presser he apologized twice more for “mistakes that I have made in the past.”
“It was shocking and it was horrific,” Northam said in response to the first question he took from reporters following his 11-minute remarks, referring to when his staff showed him the photo on Friday. “That was not my picture,” Northam insisted to another reporter.
Northam said he feels he can still lead Virginia effectively but if circumstances should change, he would relinquish his post to his lieutenant governor, Justin Fairfax.
Sharon Rondeau has operated The Post & Email since April 2010, focusing on the Obama birth certificate investigation and other government corruption news. She has reported prolifically on constitutional violations within Tennessee’s prison and judicial systems.