At least 15 congressional Democrats have dodged questions as to whether they believe the woman accusing Virginia Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax of sexual assault and what should happen to him.
The responses occured before a second accuser came forward Friday, alleging that Fairfax raped her in college. Fairfax has denied the second allegation declaring, “I will not resign.”
Dr. Vanessa Tyson revealed herself Wednesday as the woman accusing Fairfax of forcing her to give him oral sex in 2004 at the Democratic National Convention. Tyson alerted Rep. Bobby Scott of Virginia of her allegations a year ago, according to a Scott aide cited in an ABC News report.
Sen. Bernie Sanders (VT) faked a phone call this week in attempting to avoid questions from the Daily Caller on the issue.
Rep. G.K. Butterfield (NC) questioned why a 15-year-old allegation was coming out now. He did not reveal in his statement to the Washington Post whether or not he believed Fairfax’s accuser. He said there should be an investigation and Fairfax “should be afforded the presumption of innocence.”
Sen. Dick Durbin (IL) excused himself from an opinion on the basis that he’s from Illinois, has a lot he is working on, and that it is not one of those things: “I’m just not getting into it.” He said he didn’t know Tyson and only knows what he has read in the paper.
Rep. Jennifer Wexton of Virginia initially told the Post she believed Fairfax accuser Tyson, but later evaded question of what should happen to Fairfax.
Rep. Don Beyer, also of Virginia, said he is inclined to believe Tyson, but would not call on Fairfax to resign. He told the Post, “I’m also taking a look at people that deal closely with him, in that community, especially in the African American community, for first steps.”
Sen. Tim Kaine of Virginia claimed he was not being hypocritical on the basis that he waited to pass judgement on an accuser against then Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh until after public testimony and reading FBI transcripts. He emphasized the accusation is “compelling” and a “unequivocal denial…from somebody we know real well” has been made.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (CA) said, “I’ll leave that up to them,” according to the report.
Seven Democrats evaded commenting or providing a yes or no when America Rising Squared asked whether they believed the woman accusing Lt. Gov. Fairfax of sexual assault, according to a video posted Thursday.
“I haven’t looked into that yet,” Rep. Pramila Jayapal (WA) responded to questions as to whether she believed the first accuser of Fairfax.
Rep. Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez (NY) ignored questions, saying only she was trying to figure out where she was going while an aide said they were headed to the floor for a vote. She eventually responded, “I look forward to looking into the scenario, but I haven’t heard anything about this quite yet.”
Rep. Ted Deutch (FL) ignored a Fairfax inquiry, heading away from the questioner.
Rep. Jamie Raskin (MD) also dodged the question.
“I don’t know enough about it,” was Rep. Ted Lieu’s (CA) response.
Rep. Lucy McBath (GA) ignored the question as she walked away.
Rep. Cedric Richmond (LA) ignored the question before ducking into a restricted door labeled Committee on the Judiciary.
Democrats are facing problems with “blackface” scandals surrounding Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam and the second in line to ascend the gubernatorial position, Attorney General Mark Herring. Fairfax, first in line to replace Northam, now faces two sexual assault allegations. Third in line is a Republican, Virginia House Speaker Kirk Cox. Northam has been public in his determination to retain his position as governor of Virginia.