Friday, 22 February, 2019

Northam: Will Focus on Racial 'Equity' As Governor

Virginia state Sen. Tommy Norment ASSOCIATED PRESS Virginia state Sen. Tommy Norment
Leonard Rios | 10 February, 2019, 03:31

The statement said it was a "premeditated and aggressive" assault and that while Watson and Fairfax had been social friends, they were never involved romantically. Through her lawyers, she said that she was "reluctantly coming forward out of a strong sense of civic duty". "She has no interest in becoming a media personality or reliving the trauma that has greatly affected her life".

"He repeatedly attacked his accuser, he reportedly used vile and degrading language to describe her, he mischaracterized an investigation into the encounter, and he sought to blame others for events in his own past".

Sabato says the situation is more complicated for Fairfax, saying unlike Governor Ralph Northam, Fairfax could be facing criminal charges.

Susan Swecker, the party's chairwoman, said Fairfax can't serve effectively because of the allegations.

"It is demonstrably false", Fairfax said.

The woman who made the allegation says Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax forced her to perform oral sex in 2004 in MA. Northam said the experience, as well as week of reports highlighting his behavior, has taught him that the incident could be therapeutic.

Lieutenant Governor Justin Fairfax looked like the party's salvation. And although she said she has no intention of seeking any charges against Fairfax, the legal door remained open for officials in Boston, where Tyson was allegedly sexually assaulted, and North Carolina, where Watson said she was raped. In the 2016 exchange, the friend, Milagros Joye Brown, was inviting a group of friends from Duke to a fundraiser for Fairfax as he started his campaign for lieutenant governor. A couple days later she accompanied him to his hotel room after he suggested getting some fresh air while he got some documents.

That's where each of their accounts differ. He profusely apologized in a lengthy statement. Fairfax denied Watson's claims. "She told me she had been raped and she named Justin".

Tyson told them about having been blindsided by her assailant, the Times reported, quoting Elizabeth A. Armstrong, a professor of sociology at the University of MI.

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"What she told us was pretty much exactly what was in the statement that she released but with vastly less detail", Armstrong told the newspaper. Another woman said Fairfax forced her to perform oral sex in 2004.

"I overreacted", Northam said, referring to a press statement wrote on February 1 taking blame for the picture.

Nor has the scandal left Virginia Republicans unscathed.

Mr. Norment is the first Republican caught up in the turmoil gripping Richmond since last week, when it came to light that Gov. Ralph Northam's profile page in his 1984 medical school yearbook had a photo of a man in blackface standing beside someone in a Ku Klux Klan outfit.

Tyson has said she was not politically motivated to come out and share her story.

If Northam steps down, as many critics have called for him to do, Fairfax would assume the governorship.

"She's not doing this for any fame", Diane Rosenfeld, one of the founding directors of the Gender Violence Programme at Harvard Law School, told the Times.

"Virginia really is facing the equivalent of a #MeToo moment on race, where the behavior of people in the Virginia of 30 years ago is running headlong into a very different Virginia of today", says Stephen Farnsworth, a political science and global affairs professor at the University of Mary Washington in Fredericksburg, Virginia.

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