The controversy surrounding Virginia Governor Ralph Northam’s alleged appearance in a racist photo in a medical school yearbook is drawing reactions in the larger Hollywood, media and celebrity world.
Northam, a liberal Democrat, is under pressure to resign after a picture surfaced showing a man in blackface posing with someone in Ku Klux Klan regalia. The photo was published in 1984.
Northam initially apologized, but now is denying that he is in the photo, calling the image “disgusting and offensive.” He also said he did not purchase the yearbook and saw the photo only recently.
He also revealed during a Saturday press conference that he once blackened his face during a dance contest in San Antonio, where he dressed as singer Michael Jackson.
If Northam steps down, Virginia’s lieutenant governor, Justin Fairfax, will become the Commonwealth’s governor. So far, Northam has declined to do so, even as he admitted in his press conference that his constituents are unlikely to believe his account.