After a tumultuous weekend in which high-profile Democrats demanded that Virginia governor Ralph Northam step down after old photos of him in blackface surfaced, it is difficult to imagine the politician surviving the same vile race-baiting gotcha culture he and his fellow left-wing Democrats have fostered for years.
Oddly, Northam is being done in by leftist identity politics and not by the Kermit Gosnell-style infanticide he coldly supports.
Many conservatives believe that the sickening irony here is that Democrats are fine with snipping the spine of a nearly born black baby but go insane over blackface, an offensive practice that doesn’t actually kill anyone.
The Left’s current anti-blackface fetish is relatively new. Amos ‘n’ Andy, which ended in 1960, is one of the most successful sitcoms of all time despite its stereotypical depiction of blacks in Harlem that would today offend many Americans. But even the passage of decades did little to stigmatize the use of blackface.
Until fairly recently, left-wingers were fine with blackface and offensive stereotypical depictions of black Americans. No one protested Robert Downey, Jr.’s use of blackface in the 2008 movie Tropic Thunder or the blackface employed by Sarah Silverman, Jimmy Kimmel, or Howard Stern.
The career-ending blackface controversy came days after Northam expressed support for pending Democratic legislation in his state that would legalize infanticide.
Northam said medical doctors should be allowed to end an infant’s life even after birth.
“If a mother is in labor, I can tell you exactly what would happen,” he said. “The infant would be delivered. The infant would be kept comfortable. The infant would be resuscitated if that’s what the mother and the family desired, and then a discussion would ensue between the physicians and the mother.”
Seeing the writing on the wall, Democrats are throwing Northam under the bus. Why shouldn’t they? Waiting in the wings to succeed Northam is leftist Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax, a black Democrat whom Federalist co-founder Sean Davis describes as “a former Planned Parenthood official who is even more radically pro-infanticide than Northam.”
“There’s no downside for abortionists in calling for Northam’s head,” Davis tweeted. “They get all the baby-killing [without] the baggage.”
Abortion, after all, is the Left’s holiest sacrament.
Leftists believe that abortion must be defended at all costs. Protecting the Democratic Party’s brand is more important than standing by a loyal leftist ally.
Hillary Clinton, Nancy Pelosi, and Joe Biden have all demanded that Northam resign as Virginia governor after Patrick Howley of Big League Politics first reported Feb. 1 that Northam had posed for a blackface photograph in his school yearbook from Eastern Virginia Medical School, from which he graduated in 1984.
The photo in question shows one individual in blackface posing beside someone in white Ku Klux Klan attire on a page devoted to then-student “Ralph Shearer Northam.” A quotation, attributed to Northam, reads: “There are more old drunks than old doctors in this world so I think I’ll have another beer.”
The yearbook also contains other images of individuals in blackface, CNN reports.
“Blackface was used in the mid-19th century by white actors in minstrel shows to depict false stereotypes of black people,” according to CNN. “The characters were used to mock, dehumanize and present African-Americans as inferior in every way possible.”
Howley also reported Sunday that Northam is descended from slave-owners.
On Friday, Northam confirmed he was one of the individuals in the photo and apologized, describing the costumes as “clearly racist and offensive.” He did not say if he was the person in blackface or the person wearing the KKK costume.
But at a presser the next day, the governor stunned reporters by telling them he did not appear in the photo. In a confusing aside, Northam admitted that he darkened his face in 1984 in order to look like Michael Jackson in a dance contest.
“I had the shoes, I had a glove, and I used just a little bit of shoe polish to put under my – or on my – cheeks,” he said. “And the reason I used a very little bit is because, I don’t know if anybody’s ever tried that, but you cannot get shoe polish off.”
“I look back now and regret that I did not understand the harmful legacy of an action like that,” he added.
The governor also said he would not resign his post unless he came to believe he could not govern effectively.
Republicans haven’t forgotten the particularly vicious, Al Sharpton-style racist assault the Northam campaign directed at Republican gubernatorial candidate Ed Gillespie during the 2017 campaign.
Northam smeared his GOP opponent for daring to point out the Democrat’s support for lawless so-called sanctuary cities that harbor illegal aliens and resist federal immigration enforcement.
“VA in an inclusive and diverse community – we won’t put up with Ed Gillespie’s racist rhetoric and fearmongering,” Northam said in a tweet despite the complete absence of any racist rhetoric or fearmongering by his adversary.
Working with a leftist super-PAC, the Northam campaign put out a video ad showing a man driving a pickup truck bearing a “Gillespie for governor” bumper sticker trying to run down a group of minority children. This kind of character assassination is business as usual for the Left, which helps to explain why left-wingers failed to condemn the ad.
Clinton, Pelosi, and Biden are the biggest Democrat names so far to have tossed Northam overboard. At time of writing, Barack Obama, who campaigned enthusiastically for Northam, had yet to comment on the Northam saga.
Both of Virginia’s Democrat U.S. senators, Tim Kaine and Mark Warner, have called upon Northam to resign. So have former Virginia governors Terry McAuliffe and Douglas Wilder, Virginia’s Democratic Party, the Virginia Legislative Black Caucus, and the Virginia House and Senate Democrats.
Democrat members of the commonwealth’s U.S. House delegation – Bobby Scott, Elaine Luria, Abigail Spanberger, and Donald McEachin – have publicly urged Northam to relinquish his post.
A growing list of 2020 presidential candidates, would-be candidates, and Democrat lawmakers have called on Northam to resign.
Among the current U.S. senators demanding that Northam quit are Kamala Harris, Elizabeth Warren, Kirsten Gillibrand, Cory Booker, Tammy Baldwin, Sherrod Brown, and independent Bernie Sanders. U.S. reps. Eric Swalwell and Karen Bass (California), Tulsi Gabbard (Hawaii), and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (New York), as well as former Rep. John Delaney (Maryland), also say Northam needs to step down. South Bend, Ind. mayor Pete Buttigieg and Julián Castro, who is the former mayor of San Antonio, Texas and former Housing and Urban Development (HUD) secretary, have also urged Northam to resign.
“Black face in any manner is always racist and never okay,” tweeted Derrick Johnson, president of the NAACP. “No matter the party affiliation, we can not stand for such behavior, which is why the @NAACP is calling for the resignation of Virginia Governor @RalphNortham.”
President Trump couldn’t resist going on Twitter to mock Northam.
Democrat Governor Ralph Northam of Virginia just stated, “I believe that I am not either of the people in that photo.” This was 24 hours after apologizing for appearing in the picture and after making the most horrible statement on “super” late term abortion. Unforgivable!
He followed up on Twitter, writing:
Ed Gillespie, who ran for Governor of the Great State of Virginia against Ralph Northam, must now be thinking Malpractice and Dereliction of Duty with regard to his Opposition Research Staff. If they find that terrible picture before the election, he wins by 20 points!
If only Republicans took opposition research seriously.
Matthew Vadum is an independent investigative reporter in Washington, D.C. and author of Team Jihad: How Sharia-Supremacists Collaborate with Leftists to Destroy the United States and Subversion Inc.: How Obama’s ACORN Red Shirts Are Still Terrorizing and Ripping Off American Taxpayers. E-mail him at matthewvadum [at] gmail.com.