Embattled Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam told at least one fellow Democrat Saturday that he was not in a racist 1984 yearbook photo of two men dressed in blackface and a Ku Klux Klan outfit — despite admitting he was in the picture a day earlier — and that he does not intend to resign, a dramatic twist in the face of mounting calls from members of his own party for him to step down, Fox News reports.
Virginia State Senator Louise Lucas’ office told Fox News that Northam reached out to her to say that he is not in the photograph and that he would not be resigning. That came after the Virginia Democratic Party tweeted that it had received word that Northam would not be resigning over the photo as they believed he should.
The New York Times reported that he had spoken to multiple state Democrats, and had also been calling former classmates at Eastern Virginia Medical School to get more information about the picture. The photo, on Northam’s page and showing the two men in racist garb, was first published by Big League Politics Friday.
On Friday, Northam released a statement initially saying that the photo was of him — although he did not say which man was him. He apologized in both the statement and a later video statement, calling the photo “racist and offensive,” but vowed to continue in office despite the increasing pressure for him to step down.