McAuliffe Calls on Fairfax to Resign After Second Sexual Assault Accusation

Charlene Craig
February 9, 2019

The statement is from U.S. Senators Mark Warner and Tim Kaine, and U.S. Representatives Bobby Scott, Gerry Connolly, Don Beyer, A. Donald McEachin, Elaine Luria, Abigail Spanberger and Jennifer Wexton.

Watson, in a statement through her law firm Smith and Mullen, alleged that Fairfax's assault on her was "premeditated and aggressive" when they both attended Duke in 2000 and that the two were friends but not romantically involved.

"I deny this latest unsubstantiated allegation", Fairfax said in a statement reported by the Washington Post Friday afternoon.

Update: I wouldn't risk ruining his life by presuming the worst about him based on one allegation.

Calls for Northam's resignation among Virginia's Democratic establishment were almost universal early on, with at least five Democratic candidates for the White House joining the chorus.

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"The allegations against Justin Fairfax are serious and credible", McAuliffe said in a statement. A former boyfriend of Tyson's says, in essence, that she would not consensually have performed the act Fairfax admits she performed on him - oral sex. "It is unacceptable that either of these weighty responsibilities be entrusted to someone who has engaged in the behavior described by Dr. Tyson and Meredith Watson, particularly in the light of Gov. Northam's situation, which we continue to believe requires his resignation". He emphasized the accusation is "compelling" and a "unequivocal denial...from somebody we know real well" has been made. The central issue at the heart of her account is consent, and there can be no better authority to decide whether it was given than Dr. Tyson herself.

Watson said the details of her alleged attack are similar to Tyson's - and she opted to go public because of her "strong sense of civic duty and her belief that those seeking or serving in public office should be of the highest character".

Fairfax, 39, noncommittal about whether Northam, 59, should resign, stands accused of sexually assaulting a woman in a Boston hotel room in 2004.

"I think it dredges up very hurtful, painful things from the past". He denies the allegation, saying the encounter was consensual. "Similarly, she is not seeking any financial damages".

The allegations swirling around Fairfax are just one part of three scandals that engulfed Virginia Democrats this past week. Now Herring is struggling to shore up his political support amid calls for his resignation.

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In the statement, Tyson wrote that "what began as consensual kissing quickly turned into a sexual assault".

After Watson stepped forward, however, Booker ratcheted up his call.

The twin developments came at the end of a turbulent week that saw all three of Virginia's top elected officials - all Democrats - embroiled in potentially career-ending scandals.

Col. Stewart MacInnis, VMI's director of communications, told The Virginia Pilot that he could not comment on "what was going through people's minds then, or why they thought this was appropriate".

However, in a prepared statement released through his office, Norment said he is a proud member of the Class of 1968 at VMI and that it was a year of "imperative transition", at the school. In a sign that he meant to return to business as usual, he also announced more than a dozen appointments to state boards.

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Sen. Elizabeth Warren, a Massachusetts Democrat, echoed her colleagues' calls.

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