Commonwealth in Crisis: Expert weighs in, Northam’s former classmate speaks out


RICHMOND, Va. (WAVY) – A bunch of controversial issues continue on in Richmond.

Lieutenant Governor Justin Fairfax is being accused of sexual assault, which he denies. There’s also Governor Ralph Northam’s yearbook picture scandal,

And now Attorney General Mark Herring admitting to wearing blackface.

Full coverage: Commonwealth in Crisis

Political experts are weighing in.

The Assistant Director of the Wason Center for Public Policy at CNU, Rachel Bitecofer, says she thinks we are going to be seeing more people come forward about things they’ve done in their past.

Bitecofer says at a time where skeletons are coming from the past, more politicians not just from Virginia, but other states, may come forward instead of trying to hide something that could come up months or years from now.

10 On Your Side asked her what she thinks would happen if these men stepped down.

“With no clean line of succession, I think it’s possible that electorally, maybe we stick with what we have, because when you start getting down in the line of succession is to turn the state government over to the Republican Party,” said Bitecofer.

10 On Your Side also spoke exclusively with a man who says he went to elementary and high school with Northam.

Retired U.S. Army Major Fred Riley says he and Northam have known each other since third grade.

Riley says for years, he was the only black child in his class, and Governor Northam never did anything to him he would consider racist.

He says he and Northam played basketball, baseball and football together in high school.

He said when he heard about the yearbook scandal, he was upset, but he doesn’t think Governor Northam should resign.

“The best course of action I would do personally would be to have a town hall, explain himself, the photo, and be done with it. In the Christian faith were supposed to have forgiveness and I forgive him,” said Riley.

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