On Friday, the Virginian-Pilot broke the news that a yearbook photo for Virginia’s Democratic governor, Ralph Northam, had a man in blackface standing next to a man in a Ku Klux Klan hood.
On Saturday, Northam held a press conference where he claimed that the photos he had apologized for Friday were not him and that he would not resign.
The statement was immediately met with scorn on the internet, where calls for his resignation were renewed.
Northam’s predecessor, Terry McAuliffe, and Democratic National Chairman Tom Perez have both called for Northam to step down.
This Northam press conference is Trump-level bad, in terms of its sheer incompetence. His staff must be wanting to tackle him and wrestle him to the ground right about now. “ I asked a person of color and he explained it to me and I won’t ever do it again.” pic.twitter.com/0GyAUxZS7r
— Tom Nichols (@RadioFreeTom) February 2, 2019ADVERTISEMENT
Northam smirked at wearing blackface, calling it just a "little shoe polish." https://t.co/pcveTNfm4a
— Justin Miller (@justinjm1) February 2, 2019
The Northam press conference was a like a deadly car accident that you just can't look away from.
— Alison Poole (@RealAlisonPoole) February 2, 2019ADVERTISEMENT
— Gianni (@GianniDAngeloww) February 2, 2019
“Coonman” sounds a satirical novel, but Black face or not, it seems like Ralph Northam was known by his peers for impersonating black people
— ALBLA (@alliebland) February 2, 2019ADVERTISEMENT
He says it’s not him in his wedding photos either. Doesn’t know who that guy next to his wife is. @GovernorVA is full of sh*t
— robert burns (@rjburnsva) February 2, 2019
Egregious and racist photo. No excuses. Resign. Virginia Governor, Ralph Northam, Defies Calls to Resign Over Racist Photo https://t.co/UayfCN7xSD
— Josephine Ensign (@josephineensign) February 2, 2019ADVERTISEMENT
no. just no.
the first rule of hole-digging is to STOP DIGGING. Northam isn't being tone-deaf now, he's being defensive and he's not getting the reality that what he did then is affecting everything he stands for today.
This is how bad White Privilege can get. >:(
— Angry Moderate 2020 (@PaulWartenberg) February 2, 2019
Let me add my name to the list of Democrats who believe Ralph Northam needs to resign. NOW. Justin Fairfax will make an excellent governor for Virginia.
— Jana Kellam (@janakellam) February 2, 2019ADVERTISEMENT
#RalphNortham is now using the Trump school of denials – claiming he's privately spoken to someone who assures him he didn't do the racist thing.
— Northam Must Resign (@Northam_Resign) February 2, 2019