Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (D) is reportedly resisting calls for his resignation over a recently surfaced racist photo from his medical school yearbook.
In a statement demanding that Northam resign, the Democratic Party of Virginia also noted it had “gotten word he will not do so this morning.”
In the statement, Virginia Democrats said Lt. Gov Justin Fairfax should take over for Northam to “heal Virginia’s wounds and move us forward.”
Northam has faced mounting demands for his resignation after his page from the 1984 Eastern Virginia Medical School yearbook surfaced this week. One of the photos on the page shows a man wearing blackface posing next to a man in a Ku Klux Klan outfit.
He apologized for the photo on Friday, suggesting that he was one of the men pictured. He also stated that he intended to serve out the rest of his term.
However, The New York Times reported Saturday that Northam now says he has no recollection of the photo and does not believe he is one of the men in the image. The Times also reported that the governor has been reaching out to his former classmates in an attempt to determine who was in the photo.
On Saturday afternoon, Eastern Virginia Medical School President Richard V. Homan released a statement condemning the photo as “shockingly abhorrent and absolutely antithetical to the principles, morals and values we hold and espouse.”
Homan, who has been with the school since 2012, also stated that “racism and discrimination in any form is not acceptable” and apologized for the image on behalf of the institution.
Sebastian Murdock contributed reporting.
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