House Speaker Kirk Cox calls Attorney General Herring blackface admission ‘shocking’

RICHMOND, Va. -- House of Delegates Speaker Kirk Cox (R-Colonial Heights) has released a statement calling the latest scandal to hit the Commonwealth involving Attorney General Mark Herring “shocking.”

Wednesday morning, Herring admitted that he wore blackface while dressing up as a rapper as a 19-year-old college student in 1980.

"This was a onetime occurrence and I accept full responsibility for my conduct. That conduct clearly shows that, as a young man, I had a callous and inexcusable lack of awareness and insensitivity to the pain my behavior could inflict on others. It was really a minimization of both people of color, and a minimization of a horrific history I knew well even then," he wrote.

Cox, a retired teacher, says the belated admission is not only shocking, “Herring should adhere to the standard he has set for others or he loses credibility.”

Herring called on Gov. Ralph Northam to resign after he admitted a racist photo in his medical school yearbook featured him, a charge Northam later recanted.

Cox called the last seven days “tumultuous” for our Commonwealth. The week has been filled with separate scandals involving Democrats, Governor Ralph Northam, Lt. Governor Justin Fairfax, and Attorney General Herring.

“The allegations of sexual assault against Lt. Governor Fairfax are extremely serious. The Lt. Governor, the alleged victim, and Virginians all deserve a full airing of the facts,” Cox wrote.

Monday, Cox called for Gov. Northam to resign, but stopped short of saying he would attempt to remove Northam from office.

“These current controversies will be resolved in due course. In the meantime, we will continue our work on the budget and the hundreds of bills remaining before us. The General Assembly will steadily continue with the business of governing on behalf of Virginia’s 8.4 million citizens.”

If the Northam, Fairfax, and Herring step down from office, Cox would be next in line to become governor.

“We have weathered the storms of four centuries and will weather this one as well. We continue to pray for Virginia during this difficult time,” said Cox.

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