Poll: Virginians split on whether or not Northam should resign

Poll: Virginians split on whether or not Northam should resign
In a video statement, Gov. Ralph Northam said he is "committed" to working through the rest of his term.

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - A poll released last week by the Washington Post shows that Virginians are split on whether or not Gov. Ralph Northam should resign.

The Post-Schar School poll shows that 47 percent of people want him to step down, while 47 percent of the people say he should stay on.

Northam has higher support among black residents - 58 percent - than among white residents - 46 percent.

On Feb. 1, a medical school yearbook photo emerged on Northam’s page that includes someone in blackface and a KKK robe.

He initially took responsibility for that photo but says in the hours following, he reflected with family and friends and does not believe the photo is of him because he has no memory of it.

On Feb. 8, he sent a note to staff and reiterated that he would not resign.

Mark Herring

About 60 percent of the poll’s participants say that Attorney General Herring should stay in office.

Last week, Herring admitted to wearing blackface at a party in 1980.

“That conduct clearly shows that, as a young man, I had a callous and inexcusable lack of awareness and insensitivity to the pain my behavior could inflict on others," said Herring in the statement. " ... This conduct is in no way reflective of the man I have become in the nearly 40 years since."

Also in the poll, 11 percent of residents say they’ve worn blackface.

Justin Fairfax

The poll, which was taken before a second sexual assault allegation against Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax, said 65 percent of residents didn’t know enough to judge whether or not he should resign.

In a statement, Fairfax denied the claims and called it “demonstrably false" and that he has “never forced myself on anyone ever.”

Fairfax called for an investigation and said it “will confirm my account because I am telling the truth.” He also said he will not resign.

“I will clear my good name and have nothing to hide,” Fairfax’s statement said. “It is obvious that a vicious coordinated smear campaign is being orchestrated against me.”

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