Virginia's Democratic governor needs to stop making excuses and start packing his bags, the Washington Post's editorial board has decided. Gov. Ralph Northam "can no longer effectively serve the people of Virginia who elected him," the board writes, slamming his "shifting and credulity-shredding explanations" for a racist photo on his medical school yearbook page, which were followed by days of silence. He has an admirable record of public service, the Post writes, but "his governorship has been irredeemably wrecked by the self-inflicted, racially callous, and clueless mess he has made in recent days."
The editorial board says it supported giving Northam—who apologized for being in the photo then did a U-turn and said it wasn't him—a chance to clear his name, but he has "gone to ground" after his "artless, tone-deaf news conference" Saturday. "The explanations Mr. Northam has proffered are vague and unconvincing," the board writes. "Virginians deserve better. Mr. Northam’s time is up." The board notes that while the second and third people in line to be governor have their own problems that could force them from office, they are not relevant to Northam's "manifest inability at this point to be an effective governor." (Numerous senior Democrats have also called for Northam to step down.)