Virginia power crisis: As 2nd woman accuses him of rape, Lt. Gov faces impeachment unless he resigns
Virginia House of Delegates member Patrick Hope announced he will introduce articles of impeachment against Fairfax on Monday if he does not resign over the weekend, while Democrats in the Virginia state House and Senate issued a joint statement calling for his resignation. “Fairfax can no longer fulfill his duties,” the statement read. “The time has come for him to step down.”
On Monday, I will be introducing articles of impeachment for Lt. Governor Justin Fairfax if he has not resigned before then.— Patrick Hope (@HopeforVirginia) February 8, 2019
Calls for the Virginia Democrat’s resignation began on Friday afternoon after Meredith Watson released a statement claiming she was raped in a “premeditated and aggressive assault” by Fairfax while both were students at Duke University in 2000. Watson told multiple friends and classmates about the assault after it happened –both verbally and in Facebook messages and emails, she has revealed through her attorney– and at least one of those friends has publicly corroborated her account, while others have reportedly provided statements. Watson says she doesn’t want any money from Fairfax – she just wants him to resign.
Second woman comes forward with accusation against Lt Gov Fairfax, D-Va., this one an accusation of rape at college in 2000. pic.twitter.com/wjgnYDVGLW— Jake Tapper (@jaketapper) February 8, 2019
Democratic presidential hopefuls including Sen. Cory Booker (D-New Jersey), Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont), and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts) called for Fairfax to step down on Friday evening, as did other prominent Democrats, including Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii), Rep. Jennifer Wexton (D-Virginia) and former Virginia governor Terry McAuliffe.
These credible and troubling allegations from Dr. Vanessa Tyson and Meredith Watson make it clear that Lt. Gov Fairfax should resign. My heart goes out to these brave women and their families.— Elizabeth Warren (@ewarren) February 8, 2019
I agree with the joint statement from the Virginia House and Senate Democrats. Very serious and credible allegations have been made by two women against Lieutenant Governor Fairfax. He needs to resign.— Bernie Sanders (@SenSanders) February 9, 2019
The allegations against Justin Fairfax are serious and credible. It is clear to me that he can no longer effectively serve the people of Virginia as Lieutenant Governor. I call for his immediate resignation.— Terry McAuliffe (@TerryMcAuliffe) February 8, 2019
With this second serious and credible allegation of sexual assault, Justin Fairfax should resign. This is not a partisan issue.— Senator Mazie Hirono (@maziehirono) February 8, 2019
The multiple detailed allegations against the Lt. Gov. of Virginia are deeply troubling. They are serious, credible, and corroborated by others. It is no longer appropriate for him to serve. He should resign.— Cory Booker (@CoryBooker) February 8, 2019
I believe Dr. Vanessa Tyson.I believe Meredith Watson.And I believe Lieutenant Governor Justin Fairfax must resign.— Rep. Jennifer Wexton (@RepWexton) February 8, 2019
NEW: Fairfax issue statement denying this latest allegation, calls for a full investigation and notes he has passed FBI background checks. Says there is a “smear campaign” being run against him.And concludes: “I will not resign”— Jonathan Martin (@jmartNYT) February 8, 2019
Fairfax has denied Watson’s allegations, claiming there is a “smear campaign” targeting him. “I will not resign,” he said in a statement, calling for a full investigation and noting he has already passed FBI background checks. “Two pieces of paper and no proof should not be enough to end a political career,” he reportedly added later on Friday.Also on rt.com Virginia’s Lt. Governor facing #MeToo moment as his boss refuses to resign over blackface scandal
The Lt. Governor also insisted there was nothing non-consensual about his encounter with Vanessa Tyson, the professor who accused him of sexually assaulting her during the 2004 Democratic National Convention. Tyson released a statement claiming she initially suppressed memories of the assault –in which the Democratic politician allegedly forced her to perform oral sex– out of shame until the news he was running for office “hit [her] like a ton of bricks.”
Fairfax isn’t the only VA Democrat in hot water, as the entire state leadership is crumbling under allegations of racism and sexual assault. After first admitting, then denying he had appeared in a photo from his high school yearbook depicting a man in blackface next to a man in a KKK costume, Governor Ralph Northam has refused to step down despite calls for his resignation. Meanwhile, Attorney General Mark Herring has admitted that he too wore blackface at a college party.Also on rt.com ‘Don’t want to get into that’: Democrats' #MeToo double standard on Kavanaugh and Fairfax
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