Northam, Blackface Debacle: Gov. Faces Massive Backlash Over Controversial Remarks in Newly-Released Interview

politics
February 11, 2019Feb 11, 2019

Democratic Virginia governor Ralph Northam has recently received a high amount of negative attention. Northam first faced criticism over his comments supporting late-term abortion, then the governor came under fire after a disturbing photo surfaced into the public eye.

The image (below), which was from Northam’s 1984 medical school yearbook, shows two men dressed in racist costumes — one dressed in a KKK outfit and the other wearing blackface. When the image was first released, Northam released an apology statement appearing to confirm that he was indeed one of the persons in the offensive photo.

Both Democrats and Republicans called for the Virginia governor to resign, but he has since refused to step down from his political role. Previously, Northam even backtracked on his initial remarks noting that he does not think he is one of the people in the picture — despite the fact that he admitted to wearing blackface that same year to resemble Michael Jackson for a dance contest.

In a newly-released interview that aired on Monday, February 11th, Northam claimed he “overreacted” when he originally apologized for the photo, reported The New York Post. According to Northam, the man wearing blackface in the picture is definitely not him.

“When you’re in a state of shock like I was, we don’t always think as clearly as we should. I will tell you that later that night I had a chance to step back, take a deep breath, look at the picture and said, ‘This is not me in the picture,'” Northam stated. “And I also had a number of friends and classmates from medical school that called and said, ‘Ralph, that is not you,’ and that was comforting as well.”

The public was disheartened with other comments in Northam’s interview such as Northam mentioning his “moral compass” after speaking out in support of late-term abortion and his remarks on slavery.

Watch Northam’s full interview with CBS’ Gayle King below:

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