Second woman accuses Virginia's Lt Governor of sexual assault

Reuters

King quickly interjected: "Also known as slavery".

"I think there was an allegation made, right?"

Northam's reference to slaves as indentured servants sparked some outrage on social media.

Virginia Lieutenant Governor Justin Fairfax was at the State Capitol in Richmond on Monday. "SIGH", tweeted Democratic operative Symone Sanders.

In excerpts of an interview that aired Sunday, Northam was talking about Virginia's history.

The first Africans brought to Virginia were captured in Angola and brought in a slave ship, but Virginia did not have a formal legal system for slavery in 1619.

Northam's political turmoil comes as the two other top Democrats in the state face their own potentially career-ending scandals, with allegations of sexual assault against Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax - Northam's successor if the governor were to resign - and Attorney General Mark Herring acknowledging that he wore blackface at a party in 1980.

"Ms. Watson was upset to learn that Mr. Fairfax raped at least one other woman after he attacked her".

Northam has now also said he can't be man in blackface because he's left handed and both people are holding beers in their right, according to reports.

Gov. Northam was elected to office in 2017 after airbrushing his black running mate out of official campaign flyers, refusing to shake a black opponent's hand after a debate, and bolstered by support from campaign allies who ran an ad insinuating Republican voters wished to use pick-up trucks and run over non-white children. The Virginia Democratic Party has called on Fairfax to resign, and one Democratic Virginia legislator says he will introduce articles of impeachment against Fairfax if a resolution on the issue is not reached this week.

If all three men, Mr Northam, Mr Fairfax and Mr Herring, were forced out at the same time, Republican Speaker Kirk Cox would become Governor.

Sabato says if the lieutenant governor decides to resign, Governor Northam would appoint a substitute to the position.

After the second allegation was made Friday, Fairfax - the second African-American to ever win statewide office- was barraged with demands to step down from top Democrats, including a number of presidential hopefuls and most of Virginia's congressional delegation.

"I know that sometimes", he said, "it's a case of 'I'm supposed to respond like this, ' and 'this is what's expected of me'". He has served Virginia well and he, and I, and Justin - all three of us - have fought for equality.

In a former hub of the American slave trade and the capital of the Confederacy, the political crisis has sparked deeper debate about the treatment of women and how to reckon with Virginia's long, racist past.

"It's obvious from what happened this week that we still have a lot of work to do", he said in an interview with The Washington Post on Saturday.

Hughes, 54, thinks the governor should resign. And majority did not know enough about Fairfax's response to the allegations to feel strongly about it.

Despite mounting calls for his resignation, Northam told the Post that he sees the "horrific" reckoning that came out of the scandal as a way to refocus his governorship.

"I understand that he wants - that he's feeling contrition, that he's feeling regret".

"We don't even know where to take the conversation from here", community organizer Chelsea Wise said at a meeting of Democrats in Richmond on Thursday.

"Ms. Watson stands ready, although it will be painful, to tell the Virginia Legislature what Mr. Fairfax did to her when she was 20 years old", a statement released by Watson's attorney said.

The Virginia governor is already under pressure to resign after a photo emerged of his yearbook page featuring two people, one in blackface and one dressed as a Ku Klux Klan member.

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