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Virginia Governor Ralph Northam has apologised after his 1984 medical yearbook page emerged, showing a photo featuring men in racist costumes, report agencies.
‘I am deeply sorry for the decision I made to appear as I did in this photo and for the hurt that decision caused then and now,’ he said in a statement. Black politicians in Virginia called the image ‘disgusting’ and Republicans urged the Democrat to resign. The picture showed a man in blackface and another man in Ku Klux Klan robes. It appeared on a page with other photos of Mr Northam, who was aged about 25 at the time, as well as personal details about him. He did not elaborate on which costume he was wearing, but said he appeared in a photograph that was ‘clearly racist and offensive’.
Mr Northam was elected governor of Virginia in November 2017. ‘This behaviour is not in keeping with who I am today and the values I have fought for throughout my career in the military, in medicine, and in public service. But I want to be clear, I understand how this decision shakes Virginians’ faith in that commitment,’ the governor said in a statement after the image was made public.