Why Haven't Ralph Northam and Justin Fairfax Resigned? Va. Sen. Tim Kaine Is Asking
On Thursday morning, Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va.), Hillary Clinton's running mate in 2016, told CNN he still believes that Gov. Ralph Northam (D-Va.) and Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax (D-Va.) should resign over the Ku Klux Klan photo in Northam's yearbook and the sexual assault allegations against Fairfax.
"You are of course the senator from Virginia. There are a lot of people who are surprised that Governor Northam and the entire leadership in Virginia is still in place after everything that happened," CNN's John Berman noted. He asked Kaine, "Are you surprised that he’s still governor?"
The senator told CNN that he and the other Democrats who represent Virginia in Congress agreed that Northam and Fairfax should resign, but they have resigned themselves to the idea that only Northam and Fairfax themselves can make those decisions.
"You know, the — the federal delegation, there’s nine of us who are Democrats, and we kind of reached a conclusion early on that we thought both the governor and lieutenant governor had lost confidence in their abilities and should step aside," Kaine said. "But we knew when we reached that conclusion it was their call to make. So we offered that as our belief about what should happen. But it’s their call to make."
Berman pressed the senator: "All right. Senator Tim Kaine, you still feel that they should go, though?"
"I haven’t changed my opinion, yeah. Haven’t changed my opinion," the senator responded.
In other words, Tim Kaine — a senator from Virginia and a former vice presidential candidate, a national leader in his party — still wants the top two Democrats in Virginia to resign. They haven't obliged, and he hasn't changed his mind.
Ironically, Tim Kaine is a firm supporter of abortion and the entire Ralph Northam scandal emerged because Northam took his support for abortion so far that he advocated for infanticide.
In late January, Del. Kathy Tran (D-Springfield) testified that her abortion bill would make killing a fetus legal up until the very beginning of labor. When asked about the bill, Northam said that parents and doctors should decide whether or not to kill babies born alive in a botched abortion, and he doubled down on his infanticide comments.
A medical school classmate of Northam's then decided to go public with the medical school yearbook photo of two men — one with his face darkened and the other with a Ku Klux Klan hood and robe — on Northam's personal page.
Tim Kaine abandoned Kathy Tran's abortion bill amid the controversy, but he still advocates for abortion despite his Roman Catholic faith.
Neither Ralph Northam nor Justin Fairfax — who faces accusations of sexual assault from two women whom he has admitted to sleeping with but denies assaulting — have yet resigned. These scandals may damage the Democratic Party in Virginia, and Tim Kaine knows it.
Follow Tyler O'Neil, the author of this article, on Twitter at @Tyler2ONeil.