“Listen, even if it had been him in the blackface. You know,” shrugged the former Democratic Virginia governor. “It was a dumb mistake 40 years ago.”
“I grew up in New York. And in all fairness folks, I didn’t know what blackface was. You know, I had not experienced, we had no racism issues, honestly, growing up in Syracuse,” he said at an event promoting his book in July 2019.
The interview came just months after McAuliffe, along with other Democratic politicians, called on Northam to resign after it was revealed Northam appeared in a racist yearbook photo from his medical school, showing one person dressed in blackface and another in the KKK’s signature white hood.
“It doesn’t matter how Terry McAuliffe feels,” he added. “That photo that was in that yearbook was so offensive to the African-American community, that I can’t be in their shoes. And we have just got to get past this. I knew, at a young age, blackface, 1985, you just didn’t do it.”
In July 2019, McAuliffe would tell the audience there for his book appearance that it wasn’t Northam in the photo of his yearbook.
“He didn’t do Ku Klux Klan in fairness,” McAuliffe said. “It’s now out he wasn’t either one of them.”
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