Top Democrats representing states across the country called on Virginia Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax (D) to resign after a second woman accused the elected official of sexual assault. She turned and asked, 'Why did you do it?' Mr. Fairfax answered: "I knew that because of what happened to you a year ago, you'd be too afraid to say anything". A two-thirds majority in the Senate is needed to remove Fairfax from office.
Fairfax has denied Watson's allegations, claiming there is a "smear campaign" targeting him.
New allegations from a woman named Meredith Watson, who claims Fairfax raped her in 2000 while the two were students at Duke University, prompted Democratic Virginia House of Delegates Member Patrick Hope to announce he plans to introduce articles of impeachment for Fairfax unless the Democratic lieutenant governor resigns by Monday.
Fairfax has denied both of the sexual assault accusations against him. I have never forced myself on anyone ever.
Fairfax vowed to clear his "good name", and noted he has passed Federal Bureau of Investigation background checks and run for office "with nothing like this being raised before".
Fairfax went on the say he will not resign. Kaneedreck Adams, a friend of Watson's at Duke who lived across the hall in on-campus housing, said that one day in the spring semester of 2000, Watson entered her room crying. Ms. Watson also told friends, including Justin Fairfax.
Tyson, an associate professor of political science at Scripps College in Claremont, California, said the news that Fairfax might succeed Gov. Ralph Northam due to a scandal over Northam's racist yearbook photo had "flooded me with painful memories, bringing back feelings of grief, shame, and anger".
The Representatives join former Governor Terry McAuliffe who called for Fairfax's resignation earlier Friday afternoon.
"The multiple detailed allegations against the Lt. Gov. of Virginia are deeply troubling", Sen.
The announcement comes at the end of an unprecedented week in Virginia history that has seen the state's three top Democrats embroiled in potentially career-ending scandals.
Tyson accused Fairfax of forcing her to "perform oral sex" during an encounter at the Democratic National Convention in Boston in July 2004.
The pressure on Northam reached a crescendo Saturday when almost the entire Virginia Democratic establishment, as well as nearly every Democratic presidential hopeful, called on him to resign.
Fairfax would be next in line to serve as governor if Northam were to resign.
The scandals have rattled the Democratic Party in a state where it has been gaining ground in recent years and that will play a key role in picking the victor of the 2020 presidential elections.
A photo from the page of Democratic Virginia Governor Ralph Northam, which showed a person in black face and another in a Ku Klux Klan outfit, emerged on Friday.
All of Virginia's Democrats in the House and Senate also called on Fairfax to step down from his post in a joint statement released by the Virginia House Democratic Caucus.
Then controversy met Attorney General Mark Herring this week when the top Democrat admitted he had appeared in blackface during a 1980 party, where he and other friends dressed up as rappers. "There's corroboration at the time she told people about it. Dr. Tyson, the first accuser, she knew where it happened, when it happened, if you read through her details of what happened to her, it's searing".