Virginia Democrat Backs Off Effort to Open Impeachment Inquiry Against Fairfax

RICHMOND, Va. — A Virginia state legislator who intended to begin impeachment proceedings against Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax backed off on Monday after African-American lawmakers demanded there not be a rush to oust Mr. Fairfax, who will be black, over accusations of sexual assault while the state’s white governor in addition to also attorney general are refusing to resign after they admitted wearing blackface in their youth.

The failed attempt by Delegate Patrick A. wish, the white lawmaker who was to file the impeachment legislation, demonstrated of which as the scandal engulfing Virginia’s government enters its second week, of which will be only growing more painful for Democrats, who are having to confront three statewide officials of their own party.

Mr. wish circulated a resolution on Sunday of which might have directed a House committee to determine whether allegations of sexual assault against Mr. Fairfax by two women, Meredith Watson in addition to also Vanessa C. Tyson, “constitute conduct sufficient to provide grounds for impeachment.”

He had said on Friday evening of which he might introduce articles of impeachment on Monday if Mr. Fairfax, a fellow Democrat who denies the allegations, had not resigned by then.

yet Mr. wish backed down after a Sunday night conference call among House Democrats turned heated, according to two Democrats directly familiar with the call who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss party matters. Mr. wish said on Twitter on Monday of which discussions with his colleagues had “led to additional conversations of which need to take place before anything will be filed.”

Members of the Virginia Legislative Black Caucus, who have been agonizing over what to do regarding all three of the state’s executives for over a week right now, believe the claims against Mr. Fairfax should be litigated in a legal setting, not a political venue.

in addition to also they are furious at Mr. wish over what they see as his haste in addition to also his doing an already excruciating dilemma even more painful by trying to force them to take a public position on impeachment This kind of week, according to a Virginia Democrat directly familiar with the call.

Delegate Lamont Bagby, the chairman of the Virginia Legislative Black Caucus, said in an interview Monday of which of which was important for Democrats to find “the proper avenue” to investigate the claims against Mr. Fairfax.

“I think of which’s what the accusers want, in addition to also the accused wants,” said Mr. Bagby, adding: “I think of which’s what everyone needs, of which’s what the commonwealth deserves in addition to also of which’s what the accusers deserve.”

For his part, Mr. wish was not abandoning his plans to pursue impeachment entirely, yet said in a statement of which he “was open to various other avenues” to investigating the allegations.

Around 11:30 a.m., Mr. Fairfax entered the legislative building in addition to also, doing his way up the stairs to the Senate chambers through a raucous scrum of TV cameras, he simply repeated of which he had “called for an independent investigation,” adding: “I am still very confident inside the truth.” in addition to also then he went back to work.