Second woman accuses Va. Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax of sexual assault

Virginia Blackface Scandal Ensnares Top State Republican

Gov. Justin Fairfax said Friday he had no plans to resign after a second woman came forward and accused him of sexual assault - insisting their relationship while they were students at Duke was consensual. The black caucus also called for an investigation of the Fairfax case, and said the attorney general must take more actions to "reassure" the state he is fit to lead.

Justin Fairfax fights off allegations of sexual assault, American Enterprise Institute senior fellow Marc Thiessen insisted Friday that those accusations fail to match the allegations made a year ago against Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh.

The new woman, Meredith Watson, put out a statement through an attorney.

Mr Fairfax, a Democrat, has denied the latest allegation, saying he is the victim of a smear campaign.

"I felt a responsibility to myself, the beloved students I teach, and the courageous women I've tried to help overcome their own trauma", she wrote.

In a separate statement responding to the latest allegation against him, Fairfax said he has "never forced myself on anyone ever" and demanded a "full investigation into these unsubstantiated and false allegations".

The statement said that Watson is not seeking financial damages, but is simply requesting that Fairfax resign from office. The statement described the assault as "premeditated and aggressive", and noted that while Watson and Fairfax had been social friends, they were never involved romantically. We believe these allegations need to be taken very seriously, and we respect the right of women to come forward and be heard. Northam then used a weird news conference on Saturday to take back his admission that he was in the photo, but to admit that he had appeared in blackface at another time.

"The multiple detailed allegations against the Lt. Gov. of Virginia are deeply troubling", he tweeted. "Additionally, we have statements from former classmates corroborating that Ms. Watson immediately told friends that Mr. Fairfax had raped her", the statement reads.

A firestorm of scandals embroiling Virginia's governor and two fellow Democrats at the top of the state's executive branch spread to the Republican leader of the state Senate yesterday as US President Donald Trump weighed in to stoke the political crisis.

California professor Vanessa Tyson says Fairfax sexually assaulted her while they were both attending the 2004 Democratic National Convention in Boston.

Northam is facing calls from both parties to resign. A cascade of calls for Fairfax to resign began Friday evening, mirroring the exact timing of last week's calls for Northam to resign.

And Attorney General Mark Herring - in line to become governor if Northam and Fairfax resign - admitted putting on blackface in the 1980s, when he was a college student.

Sen. Bernie Sanders (VT) faked a phone call this week in attempting to avoid questions from the Daily Caller on the issue.

At the start of the week, Cox said there was little appetite among lawmakers to remove Northam through impeachment, saying resignation "would obviously be less pain for everyone".

A photo from the page of Democratic Virginia Governor Ralph Northam, which showed a person in black face and another in a Ku Klux Klan outfit, emerged on Friday.

Tyson recalled her assault last week after for Virginia Governor Ralph Northam to step down after a racist photo from his medical school yearbook page emerged. "It is unacceptable that either of these weighty responsibilities be entrusted to someone who has engaged in the behavior described by Dr. Tyson and Meredith Watson, particularly in the light of Gov. Northam's situation, which we continue to believe requires his resignation".

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