The Latest: NC governor calls for Northam to resign

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — The Latest on Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam and racist photo in 1984 yearbook (all times local):

12:50 p.m.

North Carolina’s governor is calling on Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam to resign because of a photograph on Northam’s yearbook profile page.

In an emailed statement, North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper said the photograph is both reprehensible and deeply disappointing. He said the photo comes “with pain beyond what many of us can even understand.”

Cooper called Northam’s resignation “the only way forward.”

A photo from a 1984 medical school yearbook surfaced Friday, showing a person in blackface and another wearing a Ku Klux Klan hood. The photo was on Northam’s profile page.

Northam was scheduled to speak publicly Saturday afternoon. ___

12:25 p.m.

U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi called a photograph on Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam’s yearbook profile page “racist and contrary to fundamental American values.”

She said Saturday via Twitter that she is joining her colleagues in Virginia in calling for Northam “to do the right thing” so that the people in Virginia can heal and move on.

The Virginia Democratic Party on Saturday called on Northam to resign after the photo from a 1984 medical school yearbook surfaced Friday. The photo shows a person in blackface and another wearing a Ku Klux Klan hood.

Northam was scheduled to speak to the public Saturday afternoon.

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11:35 a.m.

Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam is planning a news conference where he’s expected to say he’s not resigning and believes he was not in a racist picture featured in his 1984 medical yearbook.

Northam’s office on Saturday said the 2:30 p.m. news conference would take place at the Executive Mansion.

Northam is calling Democrats ahead of the news conference to try and shore up support. A wide swath of Democrats and Republicans have called on Northam to resign after he apologized Friday for appearing in a photo in which one person is dressed in blackface and another is wearing a full Ku Klux Klan uniform.

But Northam said he now believes he was not in the picture and can prove that it wasn’t him, said state Sen. Louise Lucas. ___

10:45 a.m.

A Virginia Democrat who has spoken with Gov. Ralph Northam has told The Associated Press that the governor now does not believe he was in a racist picture in his 1984 medical yearbook and has no immediate plans to resign.

The Democrat was not authorized to speak on the record to detail a private conversation.

Northam is calling state lawmakers Saturday to try and gain support so he can remain in office, the Democrat said.

Northam has faced a torrent of criticism and calls for his resignation after a photo surfaced from decades ago that showed two people in racist costumes: One person is dressed in blackface, and another is wearing a full Ku Klux Klan uniform.The photo appeared in Northam’s 1984 medical school yearbook. On Friday, Northam apologized for appearing in the photo.

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10:30 a.m.

Top Republicans in the Virginia General Assembly are calling on Gov. Ralph Northam to resign after he acknowledged appearing in a photo wearing a racist costume.

House Speaker Kirk Cox and Senate Majority Leader Tommy Norment said Saturday the governor had lost the public’s confidence, and it is in the state’s best interests for him to step down.

The Republicans join a growing chorus of elected officials in Virginia and elsewhere calling for Northam’s resignation.

Northam apologized Friday for appearing in a photo in which one person is dressed in blackface and another is wearing a full Ku Klux Klan uniform, but has not said he will resign. The photo appeared in his 1984 medical school yearbook.

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Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam appears to have almost no choice but to resign after losing support from virtually the entire state Democratic party and other key allies, who urged the governor to leave office because of a racist photo in which he appeared more than 30 years ago.

The Virginia Legislative Black Caucus, the state House Democratic Caucus and the state Senate Democratic Caucus all called on Northam to resign late Friday, along with several key progressive groups that have been some of the governor’s closest political allies.

Their calls for Northam to step down came in a wave late Friday, after the Democrat had apologized for appearing in a photo in which one person is dressed in blackface and another is wearing a full Ku Klux Klan uniform. The photo appeared in his 1984 medical school yearbook.

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