I Support Virginia Governor, Ralph Northam

I Support Virginia Governor, Ralph Northam

Current media is denouncing VA Gov Ralph Northam with many demanding he resign now over an unfortunate incident in his youth.

I note that that the final crucial person who gave us Obamacare was the late Robert C. Byrd of West Virginia. He was in his youth a member of the Klu Klux Klan, indeed held some office in it. In the end when the ultimate votes in the Senate came, which had Republicans denouncing him over his 1940s support of the KKK, and some of them openly hoping he would die as he was in bad health and did die thereafter, Robert Byrd did show up for the ultimately crucial vote, wheeled in in a wheelchair, to cast the ultimately final crucial vote that gave us ACA/Obamacare, which despite its many flaws has improved the health of many people in America.

Regarding Ralph Northam, an extremely excellent and super competent governor of Virginia, a few days ago, affirmed the right of women to make the ultimate decisions regarding their bodies with the support of just one doctor (three are now needed), he has just been denounced on alt-right and even Hannity outlets for his defense of a woman’s right to choose. The attacks on him from the organized right on this matter have been horrendous. They have accused him of supporting “infanticide.” This charge is disgusting and false. But the GOP is trying to make his supremely responsible and medically wise view a crime. They are just hypocrites.

I will not call those now demanding Northam’s resignation over his unfortunate photo from 35 years ago hypocrites. Indeed, I sympathize, especially with African Americans, who have had to face all kinds of racism here in Virginia as in the awful violence in Charlottesville in 2017 as well as the ongoing refusal at the state level to allow local governments to remove Confederate statues and monuments. It may well be that Northam will feel in the end that he must resign for his youthful mistake. But I think it will be unfortunate as he really has been a good governor and is personally a nice guy (I have met him). The photo certainly does not represent his current views at all.

Addendum, 3:25 PM, 2/2/19

I fear that I am increasingly leaning to Northam needing to resign, despite my generally high regard for him. He has just made a public statement that has really confused things, and I fear he may simply have fatally damaged his governorship with how he has messed this story up. He is now claiming that he is not in the photo, but says he did blacken his face once in 1984 to pretend to be Michael Jackson for a dance or skit, where he even won a prize (ugh). He also says he is not the person now he was then and is begging for forgiveness. I guess he deserves the latter, but he made a real botch of this, and I fear it will not get better. Ironically the lt. gov who would replace him if he were to resign, Justin Fairfax, is African American. Anyway, I am sorry about this whole situation, but now fear Northam simply cannot clean up the mess he has made of it.

Barkley Rosser