Justin Fairfax Staffers Quit After Sexual Assault Allegations Surface

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Virginia's political leadership has been embroiled in controversy this month with scandals swirling around top elected officials.

Fairfax has been under pressure from both Republicans and Democrats to step down after two women came forward in the past week to allege he sexually assaulted them in the 2000s.

Fairfax denies the allegations.

In his statement on Saturday, he acknowledges both interactions with the women but says both instances were consensual.

A Democratic member of the Virginia House of Delegates, Patrick Hope, had said he would initiate impeachment proceedings against Fairfax.

Meredith Watson's lawyer released a statement late Friday claiming Watson was raped by a Duke basketball player and, when she reported the attack to a school administrator, received no assistance.

"Ms. Watson stands ready, although it will be painful, to tell the Virginia Legislature what Mr. Fairfax did to her when she was 20 years old", the statement said.

Smith also provided an email exchange between Watson and a friend from Duke, Milagros Joye Brown, in which she tells her friend not to include her on correspondence regarding Fairfax because he had raped her in college. Fairfax has vehemently denied the claims and called for authorities, including the FBI, to investigate. "Our American values don't just work when it's convenient - they must be applied at the most hard of times".

Who wants to force a black man out of office over sexual assault allegations while white men accused of racism are allowed to keep their power?

A number of staffers working for embattled Lt. Gov. But he said that reflection has convinced him that, by remaining in office, he can work to resolve them.

Northam, a pediatric neurologist, said that he considered quitting, but has decided he's "not going anywhere" because the state "needs someone that can heal" it. "There are still some very deep wounds in Virginia, and especially in the area of equity".

"That same year I did participate in a dance contest in San Antonio in which I darkened my face as part of a Michael Jackson costume", Northam said.

Blackface traces its history to 19th-century minstrel shows that mocked African-Americans, and is seen as offensive by many Americans - though its use continued in US popular culture through to the early 21st century. But he could not explain how the photo wound up there, or why he initially had taken responsibility for it.

A man who was romantically involved with Tyson in the late 1990s said Thursday that she disclosed the childhood abuse to him during a conversation about why she found certain kinds of physical intimacy hard. "I have learned. I admit to my mistakes". That person was granted anonymity because details of the incident have not been made public.

Last week, Dr. Vanessa Tyson shared her story, accusing Fairfax of sexually assaulting her in July 2004 during the Democratic National Convention in Boston.

Calls for his resignation grew steadily as the day wore on.

Virginia's Democratic congressional delegation was split.

Fairfax was expected to succeed Northam if he'd chose to step down.

But as the museum makes clear, they were still slaves - Africans who were brought to these shores against their will, and forced to work without pay. Steve Newman, the Senate's pro tem, serve as both a voting senator and temporary lieutenant governor. "It's on your yearbook page, governor", King said. Northam denied being in that picture but admitted to dressing in blackface for a social event that same year.

Attorney General Mark Herring has since acknowledged wearing blackface at a college party in 1980.

When it looked like Northam would resign and Fairfax would be sworn in as governor, Tyson posted a message on Facebook that didn't name him, but led to her public outing as his accuser.

House Speaker Kirk Cox, the Republican who would become governor if all three Democrats resigned, said it was too soon to say whether he would support impeachment.