After a racist photo on his 1984 yearbook page surfaced on Friday, Virginia Governor Ralph Northam was called on to resign. So, he held a press conference to prove he’s not a racist. It didn’t go well.
It was almost too easy for Seth Meyers, who took “A Closer Look” at the controversy on Monday, and in particular, the governor’s backtracking on whether the image of a man wearing blackface, and another wearing a Ku Klux Klan hood, actually featured him.
After apologising for being in the photo, Northam later changed his story, claiming he knew he wasn’t in it. Why? He pointed to another time he wore blackface, when he performed a Michael Jackson routine in a dance contest. Really.
“He’s actually arguing that it couldn’t have been him in blackface because there was a different time he wore blackface,” said Meyers. “It’s not a defense, that’s a confession. Try that next time a cop pulls you over: ‘Officer, I’m totally sober. Usually when I drive drunk I swerve a lot more.'”
For the most part, Meyers joked about Northam’s defence, but put the reality of the situation quite simply.
“Even if it’s not you in the photo, admitting that you did wear blackface at a different event is also disqualifying,” he said. “It’s not just an embarrassing story, it’s racist and dehumanising.”