A tip from a “concerned citizen” about a racist photo in Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam’s medical-school yearbook led to the explosive story that threatens to derail his career, The Washington Post reported.
Patrick Howley, editor in chief of Big League Politics, first reported the existence of a photo depicting a figure in blackface standing next to another person in a Ku Klux Klan hood.
“It’s very easy to explain,” Howley, 29, told the Post. “A concerned citizen, not a political opponent, came to us and pointed this out. I was very offended [by the photo] because I don’t like racism.”
Howley told the Post the tip followed Northam’s comments about late-term abortions. He declined any further details, citing a confidentiality agreement.
But Howley said it took him only a few hours to confirm that the damaging photo was real, the Post reported.
The revelation generated widespread outrage, calls for Northam’s resignation — and both an apology and then denial from Northam.
Howley doesn’t buy Northam’s denial, the Post reported.
“It’s clearly a picture of him,” he said, though he offered no further support. “The photo is genuine. It shows clearly he’s a racist,” he added.
He also told the Post his scoop should shame the news media and opposition researchers.
“I think people are lazy,” he said. “The consultants and political journalists didn’t think to look at a yearbook. It’s been out there for years.”
Big League Politics is co-owned by Howley — who was a reporter for Breitbart during the 2016 campaign — Noel Fritsch, a consultant who worked for the campaign of Corey Stewart, a conservative who unsuccessfully challenged Virginia Democratic Sen. Tim Kaine last year, and Reilly O’Neal, another consultant who worked for Roy Moore, the Alabama Senate candidate who was accused by multiple women of harassment and child molestation, the Post reported.
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