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Northam's Word Choice Gets Him Deeper Into Hot Water - Page 2

Embattled Virginia governor refers to slaves as 'indentured servants'
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 11, 2019 3:08 PM CST

  • Critics and supporters: USA Today rounds up reactions to the "indentured servants" comment, many of which are critical, accusing Northam of using a euphemism for slavery. But some backed him up: "First black Africans brought to Virginia in 1619 were indentured servants," author Kurt Eichenwald tweeted. "There were no laws for slavery in VA til 1661. The evolution from IS to slavery is essential to understand depth of evil of slavery."
  • Northam's response: After criticism started rolling in, Northam told CBS it was actually a historian at Fort Monroe who corrected him when he referred to the first Africans brought to Virginia as "enslaved." USAT notes that historians are divided on which term is more accurate. "The fact is, I’m still learning and committed to getting it right," Northam's statement concludes.
  • Northam still won't resign: In his interview with King, Northam went on to again say he won't step down as governor. "Right now, Virginia needs someone that can heal," he said. "There's no better person to do that than a doctor. Virginia also needs someone who is strong, who has empathy, who has courage and who has a moral compass. And that's why I'm not going anywhere. I have learned from this. I have a lot more to learn."
  • On the subject of his lieutenant governor: Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax has been accused of sexual assault by two women, and Northam told King their allegations must be taken seriously. He said he supports an investigation, which Fairfax himself has also called for, and that "if these accusations are determined to be true, I don't think he's going to have any other option but to resign." More on Fairfax, plus the third in line to the governorship, on the next page.

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