UPDATE: The Washington Post reports that they “did not find ‘significant red flags and inconsistencies within the allegations,’” but that the inability to verify the story, plus zero instances of sexual impropriety from Fairfax’s past were the reasons why the publication passed on the story:
The woman and Fairfax first met in Boston at the 2004 Democratic national convention.
During a conversation, the two realized they had a mutual friend. It was that commonality, she recalled, that put her at ease enough that on the afternoon Fairfax asked her to walk with him to his hotel room to pick up some papers, she thought nothing of joining him.
Fairfax and the woman told different versions of what happened in the hotel room with no one else present. The Washington Post could not find anyone who could corroborate either version. The Post did not find “significant red flags and inconsistencies within the allegations,” as the Fairfax statement incorrectly said.
Fairfax (D), who was not married at the time, has denied her account through his attorneys and described the encounter as consensual.
The woman described a sexual encounter that began with consensual kissing and ended with a forced act that left her crying and shaken. She said Fairfax guided her to the bed, where they continued kissing, and then at one point she realized she could not move her neck. She said Fairfax used his strength to force her to perform oral sex.
The Washington Post, in phone calls to people who knew Fairfax from college, law school and through political circles, found no similar complaints of sexual misconduct against him. Without that, or the ability to corroborate the woman’s account — in part because she had not told anyone what happened — The Washington Post did not run a story.
The Virginia Democratic Party is a total mess right now. They have no front line. Everyone and their mother are calling on Democratic Gov. Ralph Northam to resign after a racist photo on his yearbook page when he attended Eastern Virginia Medical School back in 1984 surfaced. The photo features two men, one wearing blackface while the other is in a Ku Klux Klan outfit. Northam admitted to being in the photo, though he did not identify which person he was in the picture. Over the weekend, Northam retracted his apology, said he’s not in the photo, but admitted to doing blackface for a dance competition in San Antonio in his youth. It’s a total dumpster fire. And now, Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax has been accused of sexual assault, though his office said that the allegation was littered with red flags, which is why The Washington Post didn’t run with it. Fairfax’s office has strongly denied the allegation (via Washington Examiner):
The acts and rhetoric in #Charlottesville over past 24 hours are unacceptable & must stop. A right to speech is not a right to violence.— Ralph Northam (@GovernorVA) August 12, 2017
Virginia’s Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax on Monday denied a new sexual assault allegation against him, just as many were preparing for him to take over for embattled Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam.
“Lt. Governor Fairfax has an outstanding and well-earned reputation for treating people with dignity and respect,” Fairfax’s chief of staff and communications director said in a statement Monday. “He has never assaulted anyone — ever — in any way, shape, or form.”
The statement appears to be referencing a claim from a woman, Vanessa Tyson, who said she was sexually assaulted by Fairfax at the DNC convention more than a decade ago.
“This is Vanessa Tyson’s private post. She gave permission to share this screenshot of her post. She’s a professor...”— Culttture (@culttture) February 4, 2019
Looks like Lt. Gov. Fairfax is caught in a #MeToo scandal following his separation with Gov. #RalphNortham who has been under fire over past racist costumes. pic.twitter.com/BspWPauabj
Whoever it is, Fairfax’s statement reads that this person approached The Post almost a year ago, but didn’t go with her story because…it couldn’t corroborate the account with any evidence (via NBC 12 Richmond):
On Monday morning, Fairfax released a tweet that said “the person reported to be making this false allegation first approached the Washington Post ... after being presented with facts consistent with the Lt. Governor’s denial of the allegation, the absence of any evidence corroborating the allegation, and significant red flags and inconsistencies with the allegation, the Post made the considered decision to not publish the story.”
And it wasn't just The Post, am I right WUSA9:
WUSA9, along with the Washington Post and news outlets across Virginia have known about the claim for months, and have not been able to corroborate the allegations.
5:30 AM LATEST —— Mike Valerio (@MikevWUSA) February 4, 2019
• Lt Gov Justin Fairfax FIGHTING against unverified sexual assault allegation
• Woman alleges assault during 2004 DNC
• @WUSA9, @washingtonpost have known about claim, didn't find corroborating evidence#Northam #JustinFairfax
It sure is interesting to see which evidence-free sexual assault allegations the Washington Post will publish and which allegations it tries to cover up. https://t.co/Ad6DA3j8tb— Sean Davis (@seanmdav) February 4, 2019
We’ll let this story sort itself out, but the media’s reaction to this is interesting, something that The Federalist's Mollie Hemingway and others noted as well. First, let’s repeat once again that ‘Believe All Women’ only applies when a Republican is accused. And all aspects of journalistic ethics regarding such sensitive and potentially career-ending allegations are taken with care…when Democrats are the ones looking down the barrel of the Me Too gun. When Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh was under siege by liberal America for shoddy sexual misconduct claims, everyone took it as Gospel, despite no corroborating witnesses or evidence. So, these are your rules, liberal media. You set them and now they are eating you alive. You tried to use both shoddy, baseless sexual misconduct allegations and a yearbook to clip Kavanaugh and failed. You guys gunned after Kavanaugh hard. Now, your own tribe is facing similar allegations and you're taking a more kid-glove approach. It sucks, doesn’t it? May seem a bit unfair, right? Yeah, but these are your rules and you must play by these rules. That’s how liberalism works here on these issues.
The Washington Post was allegedly aware of allegations against Justin Fairfax but declined to run it b/c they couldn’t corroborate it, so a reminder that it was, you guessed it, the Washington Post who first ran Christine Ford’s uncorroborated allegations.https://t.co/K3hel8PpGg— Jerry Dunleavy (@JerryDunleavy) February 4, 2019
I guess we’re not believing women anymore. Weird. https://t.co/WpDlFA8mmA— Stephen Miller (@redsteeze) February 4, 2019
That this was no barrier to them running with the Kavanaugh allegations (or myriad allegations against Trump) is telling. https://t.co/fVtD752Zh4— Mollie (@MZHemingway) February 4, 2019
I'm sure Ronan Farrow and Jane Mayer are digging in right now trying to find a third-hand, uncorroborated account they can rush to print. https://t.co/QRNW6pIQLv— Tom Bevan (@TomBevanRCP) February 4, 2019