The mess in Virginia shows no signs of getting better. But, as with everything else we’ve seen in Virginia, politics trumps principle and identity politics trumps just about everything else. Governor Ralph Northam and Attorney General Mark Herring had been found to have indulged in wearing blackface after race baiting their way to victory and seem sure to finish out their terms. Lieutenant Governor Justin Fairfax has been credibly accused, on the record, by two women both forcible rape and forcible sodomy.
Friday, it seemed as though Lieutenant Governor Justin Fairfax’s goose was cooked. Two women had accused him of forcing them to have sex and it was rumored that at least three more were waiting in the wings. The entire political establishment in Virginia was demanding his resignation. The hirsute harpies of NOW were baying for his blood. One Virginia Democrat, Patrick Hope, pledged to introduce a bill of impeachment today:
Once again, the impeachment process is the only way for Virginia to have the investigation that LG Fairfax has demanded. https://t.co/54Hm9849g3
— Patrick Hope (@HopeforVirginia) February 10, 2019
And suddenly, it stops.
Fairfax impeachment called off for now.
Seems like a combo of procedural/legal confusion and avoiding a rush to oust the only African-American in statewide office while two embattled white guys cling to powerhttps://t.co/QD5Tq2qFFM
— Graham Moomaw (@gmoomaw) February 11, 2019
…Hope said Monday that “additional conversations” would be necessary before his impeachment resolution could move forward. He also signaled he’s open to dropping the impeachment process altogether.
“We must allow the victims to be heard in the most fair and just process possible,” Hope said. “Any process must be open and transparent to the public. If we can come behind another process besides impeachment that will meet these goals, I will be supportive.”
Hope’s reversal came after a tense phone call Sunday night with his Democratic colleagues, according to multiple sources with knowledge of the call. Other lawmakers raised concerns that Hope had announced his plan Friday without consulting them first. Some Democrats had already said publicly that they felt it would be inappropriate to begin an impeachment process based solely on allegations that Fairfax has adamantly denied.
“I believe it was well-intended,” Del Lamont Bagby, D-Henrico, the chair of the Virginia Legislative Black Caucus, said of Hope’s effort. “But we need to explore other avenues to getting that investigation.”
That degree of walkback gives a hint at the turmoil in the VA Democrat party. On the surface this is three clear cut cases where resignation would be demanded under current Democrat principles (I laughed keyboarding that). Any hint of racism, regardless of the context, demands being declared anathema. Northam’s offense occurred 35 years ago and Herring’s 39, but still… The #MeToo movement demands that we “Believe Women” and declares there is no statute of limitations on any perceived sexual transgression be it an untoward remark, a leering glance, or full blown rape. Black voters seem willing to forgive Northam (making them the only reasonable people in this mess) but then you’re looking at two white guys getting a pass and the black guy getting fired. Not great optics.
Right now, you have to bet that none of the three involved in this resign. Fairfax has lost some national prestige, he was booted as chairman of the Democratic Lieutenant Governors Association, but that is of little import. It looks like he will end up reading some Naomi Wolf books and mouthing platitudes about injustices to women and all will be forgiven.
There are two lessons to take from this. First, the Democrats believe in power and the rest of the smack they talk about justice and fairness is just window dressing for the credulous. Second, the next time a Republican politician is caught up in anything like this, you can count on True Conservatives to line up to bugger the poor guy while patting themselves on the back about their own righteousness. So, I guess I was wrong. We really didn’t learn anything from this, did we?
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