Kaine calls on Fairfax to resign

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) -- U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine of Virginia is calling on Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax to resign after two women went public with allegations of sexual assault against Fairfax.

Kaine says his fellow Democrat cannot effectively serve and should step down. In issuing a statement Friday evening, Kaine broke from other party elders like Sen. Mark Warner and U.S. Rep. Bobby Scott, who did not directly call for Fairfax's resignation.

But Warner says the allegations against his fellow Democrat are serious and Fairfax should resign if they are true.

"Sexual assault is never acceptable, and survivors of violence and harassment deserve to be heard. If these allegations concerning Lieutenant Governor Fairfax are accurate, then they are clearly disqualifying," Warner said in a statement Friday evening.

Also, former congressman and gubernatorial candidate Tom Perriello said Fairfax should step down.

And the Virginia Legislative Black Caucus has joined the growing chorus of elected officials and others calling for Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax to resign over sexual assault allegations.

The group of lawmakers said Friday that "we can't see it in the best interest" of Virginia for Fairfax to stay.

A second woman came forward Friday to accuse Fairfax, a Democrat, of sexual assault. She said the attack took place when she and Fairfax were students at Duke University.

Earlier this week, California college professor Vanessa Tyson accused Fairfax of forcing her to perform oral sex on him in 2004 in a Boston hotel room during the Democratic National Convention.

Fairfax has denied wrongdoing, called for investigations and said he won't resign.

Also on Friday, a Virginia lawmaker says he plans to file papers to begin impeachment proceedings against Fairfax.

Del. Patrick Hope tweeted Friday that he would introduce articles of impeachment for Lt. Governor Justin Fairfax on Monday "if he has not resigned before then." Hope is an Arlington County Democrat who has served since 2010.



 
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