Former Dem Congressman Defends Northam: His VMI Nickname Is Actually A Derogatory Term For White People

Posted: Feb 05, 2019 1:15 PM
Former Dem Congressman Defends Northam: His VMI Nickname Is Actually A Derogatory Term For White People

While everyone in the Democratic Party is mostly calling on Virginia Democratic Gov. Ralph Northam to resign, former Rep. Jim Moran (D-VA) has his back. Mr. Moran maybe the only somewhat prominent Democrat that has supported Northam’s decision to not resign over a racist photo on his yearbook page that was exposed last Friday. The picture shows two men, one in blackface the other in a Klan outfit. It’s been verified, and Northam initially apologized for being in the photo, though he didn’t say which person he was in the picture. The yearbook was from his days at Eastern Virginia Medical School back in 1984. It wasn’t youthful indiscretion. Northam was an adult. Then, Northam retracted his apology, saying that wasn’t him in the photo, but that he did wear blackface for a dance contest where he dressed as Michael Jackson. You just cannot make this stuff up. The anti-racist candidate, a cheap term by the way, during the 2017 gubernatorial election, who slammed Republican opponent Ed Gillespie with these cheap ads, engaged in blackface. 

Well, first, Northam and the Virginia Democratic Party had a banner start to Black History Month. Second, there was also Northam’s Virginia Military Institute yearbook, where his nickname was “coonman.” Mr. Moran felt compelled to defend Northam on CNN, where he said that this nickname was actually a swipe against white people and that he believes in redemption and second chances. Oh, and he doesn’t like rushes to judgment. When asked by host Poppy Harlow if Northam should resign if it turns out that he is the person in the controversial photo, Moran didn’t say no. Even knowing that Northam did blackface for his Michael Jackson costume, Moran says Northam should stay (via Real Clear Politics):


POPPY HARLOW, CNN HOST: All right, welcome back to NEW DAY.

Embattled Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam will meet with his cabinet this morning in just a little over an hour as calls for him to resign grow louder and louder over that racist yearbook photo. Last night, he held an emergency meeting with several senior staff members of color, and a source tells CNN no one urged him to stay on and fight.

But not everyone agrees. Not every Democrat agrees.

Joining me now is the former Democratic congressman of Virginia, Jim Moran. Thank you for being with me, Congressman. I appreciate your time this morning.


HARLOW: Do you still believe this morning, after hearing all you heard and read this weekend, that Gov. Northam should not resign?

MORAN: Absolutely. I don't think we have all the facts at our disposal. I don't like rushes to judgment. Justice is never about a rush to judgment.

We know that there's an abhorrent photo in his yearbook. We know he put some black shoe polish on his face and tried to imitate Michael Jackson doing the Moon dance -- Moonwalk -- 35 years ago.

We know that somebody referred to him, I think in the yearbook, as "Coon Man." Well, you know, those are horrible words. Of course, that term is what white folk referred to other white folk who they thought were too sympathetic to black folk.

Yeah, file this under not helping. Also, Moran doesn’t want a rush to judgment. Tell that to the student body at Covington Catholic High School. Tell that to Justice Clarence Thomas. Tell that to Justice Brett Kavanaugh. Far too often, when Republicans are the ones in the accused chair, a rush to judgment is all there is in the matter. For Democrats, it’s a different story. You all know this. I’m preaching to choir, I know. But these are also the Democrats’ rules. And it’s very fitting, very satisfying, and very entertaining to see them start to destroy their masters. Everyone has a plan until you get punched in the mouth. It sucks doesn’t it, Democrats. 

Maybe there is context, I don’t know. It doesn’t matter. Would Moran be saying this if a Republican were accused? Hell no. And what is this business about second chances? Northam was an adult when he did this. And it was the 1980s. There are no excuses.  

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