|73rd Governor of Virginia|
|Assumed office |
January 13, 2018
|Preceded by||Terry McAuliffe|
|40th Lieutenant Governor of Virginia|
January 11, 2014 – January 13, 2018
|Preceded by||Bill Bolling|
|Succeeded by||Justin Fairfax|
|Member of the Virginia Senate|
from the 6th district
January 9, 2008 – January 11, 2014
|Preceded by||Nick Rerras|
|Succeeded by||Lynwood Lewis|
Ralph Shearer Northam
September 13, 1959
Nassawadox, Virginia, U.S.
Pam Northam (m. 1987)
|Education||Virginia Military Institute (BS)|
Eastern Virginia Medical School (MD)
|Branch/service||United States Army|
|Years of service||1984–1992|
|Unit||Army Medical Corps|
Ralph Shearer Northam (born September 13, 1959) is an American politician and physician serving as the 73rd Governor of Virginia since January 13, 2018. A pediatric neurologist by occupation, he was an officer in the U.S. Army Medical Corps from 1984 to 1992. Northam, a member of the Democratic Party, served as the 40th Lieutenant Governor of Virginia from 2014 to 2018 prior to winning the governorship against Republican nominee Ed Gillespie in the 2017 election.
- 1 Early life, family history, and education
- 2 U.S. Army and medical career
- 3 Early political career
- 4 Governor of Virginia (2018–present)
- 5 Political positions
- 5.1 Abortion
- 5.2 Confederate monuments
- 5.3 Criminal justice
- 5.4 Death penalty
- 5.5 Economy
- 5.6 Education
- 5.7 Environment and energy
- 5.8 Family leave and child care
- 5.9 Guns
- 5.10 Health care
- 5.11 Immigration
- 5.12 LGBTQ rights
- 5.13 Marijuana
- 5.14 Redistricting
- 5.15 Donald Trump
- 5.16 Campaign and voting legislation
- 6 Personal life
- 7 Electoral history
- 8 Footnotes
- 9 References
- 10 Further reading
- 11 External links
Early life, family history, and education
Northam was born in the town of Nassawadox on Virginia's Eastern Shore on September 13, 1959. He and his older brother of two years, Thomas, were raised on a water-side farm, just outside Onancock, Virginia. The family grew a variety of crops and tended livestock on their seventy-five-acre (30 ha) property. As a teenager, Northam worked on a ferry to Tangier Island and as a deckhand on fishing charters; he also worked on a neighbor's farm and as a "stock boy" at Meatland grocery store. He and Thomas attended desegregated public schools. Northam graduated from Onancock High School, where his class was predominately African American.
Northam's mother, Nancy B. Shearer, was originally from Washington, D.C. She was a part-time nurse at Northampton-Accomack Memorial Hospital, and her father was a surgeon. Nancy Shearer died in 2009. Northam's father, Wescott B. Northam, served as a lawyer and is a veteran of World War II; he entered politics in the 1960s, serving three terms as Commonwealth's Attorney for Accomack County, Virginia. After losing election to a fourth term, Wescott Northam was appointed as a Circuit Court judge for Accomack and Northampton counties. Wescott Northam's own father, Thomas Long Northam, had served as a judge in the same court.
Thomas Long Northam died when Wescott Northam was only fourteen, and a few years later, the family farm in Modest Town, Virginia, where Wescott had been born, was sold. The farm had first come into the family through Ralph Northam's great-great-grandfather, James, who along with his son, Levi Jacob, had owned slaves – one of whom, Raymond Northam, was freed to enlist in the 9th Regiment of Colored Troops (Union Army, Civil War). Ralph Northam was unaware of his family's slave-owning history until his father conducted research into their ancestry during the time of Northam's gubernatorial campaign.
In high school, Northam was voted "Most Likely to Succeed" and graduated as salutatorian. He was a member of his school's basketball and baseball teams. Northam graduated from the Virginia Military Institute in 1981, where he served as president of VMI's honor court and received a bachelor's degree in biology. He went on to Eastern Virginia Medical School, earning his M.D. degree in 1984.
U.S. Army and medical career
From 1984 to 1992 he served as a United States Army medical officer. During his Army service, he completed a pediatric residency at Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio, Texas, followed by a child neurology fellowship at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, D.C. and Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland. During Operation Desert Storm, he treated evacuated casualties at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany.
Northam was discharged from the U.S. Army in 1992 at the rank of major, after having completed eight years of service. Since 1992, Northam has been a pediatric neurologist at Children's Hospital of the King's Daughters in Norfolk, Virginia.
Early political career
Prior to entering politics, Northam voted for Republican George W. Bush in the 2000 and 2004 presidential elections, a fact that opponents raised in later Democratic primaries. Northam says that he was apolitical at the time and regretted those votes, saying: "Politically, there was no question, I was underinformed."
Senate of Virginia (2008–2014)
Northam first ran for office in 2007 in the Virginia 6th Senate district, which includes the Eastern Shore of Virginia; Mathews County, on the Middle Peninsula; and parts of the cities of Norfolk and Virginia Beach. He was unopposed for the Democratic nomination. On November 6, 2007, he defeated Nick Rerras, a two-term Republican incumbent, 17,307 votes to 14,499.
He was re-elected in November 2011, defeating Ben Loyola Jr., a defense contractor, 16,606 votes to 12,622.
One of Northam's first major activities as a state legislator was to lead an effort to pass a ban on smoking in restaurants in Virginia. The bill failed the first time, but it passed the next year and Governor Tim Kaine signed it into law.
In 2009, Northam – a self-described "conservative on fiscal issues and liberal on social issues" – was the subject of an attempt by state Senate Republicans to get him to switch parties. This action would have given Republicans control of the State Senate, but after news of the imminent switch broke on Twitter, Democrats held a closed-door meeting, and Northam reiterated that he was not leaving the party. He later said, "I guess it's nice to be wanted, but I'm a Democrat, and that's where I'm staying."
Lieutenant Governor of Virginia (2014–2018)
Northam ran for Lieutenant Governor of Virginia in the 2013 election. Northam competed against U.S. Chief Technology Officer Aneesh Chopra for the Democratic nomination. On June 11, 2013, Northam won the Democratic primary over Chopra with 54% of the vote to Chopra's 46%.
On November 5, 2013, Northam was elected as Virginia's 40th Lieutenant Governor over Republican E. W. Jackson, receiving 55% of the vote to Jackson's 45%. Northam was the first Democrat since Tim Kaine in 2001 to be elected Lieutenant Governor of Virginia.
Governor of Virginia (2018–present)
In February 2015, just over a year into his term as lieutenant governor, Northam confirmed his interest in running for Governor of Virginia in 2017. He made these intentions official on November 17, 2015, via an email to supporters.
In the Democratic primary, Northam faced Tom Perriello, who had previously served as a Congressman from Virginia and as a diplomat in the Obama administration. The primary campaign was often described as a proxy battle between the Bernie Sanders/Elizabeth Warren wing of the Democratic Party, represented by Perriello, and the Hillary Clinton wing, represented by Northam, although this take was dismissed as little more than a "talking point" by The Washington Post's editorial board, which praised both candidates and wrote, "the policy differences between the two, though real, are not enormous". The Washington Post endorsed Northam primarily on the basis of his "experience" and "temperament". In its endorsement, the publication explained that the next governor would likely have to work with a Republican-controlled legislature and wrote,
"If any Democratic governor can nudge GOP majorities in his direction, it’s Mr. Northam. That matters in a state where governors, barred from running for consecutive terms, have one brief shot at getting things done."
On June 13, 2017, Northam won the Democratic nomination with 56% of the vote to Perriello's 44%. In the general election, Northam faced Ed Gillespie, who had previously served as Counselor to the President under George W. Bush, chair of the Republican National Committee, and chair of the Republican Party of Virginia. Northam's campaign funds were heavily depleted by the end of the primary race. He was left with around $1.75 million, which amounted to roughly half of Gillespie's remaining funds. Northam quickly gained the advantage however – by the end of the summer, his available funds had grown twice as large as Gillespie's, with two months left in the campaign. Northam led Gillespie among small donors, as well: "5,900 donations under $100 to Gillespie's 2,100."
In October 2017, the Northam campaign released a small number of flyers omitting Northam's running-mate for lieutenant governor, Justin Fairfax. These were released at the request of Laborers' International Union of North America, which had endorsed only part of that year's Democratic ticket. Northam and that year's Democratic nominee for Attorney General, Mark Herring, were both endorsed by LIUNA and were both included on the flyer. LIUNA withheld its endorsement from Fairfax and explained that Fairfax opposes the construction of natural gas pipelines that are favored by the organization. As Fairfax is black, while Northam and Herring are both white, some activists criticized the decision to accommodate LIUNA's request. All houses that received the LIUNA flyers also received standard campaign flyers including Fairfax.
During the campaign, Gillespie and President Donald Trump accused Northam of being responsible for the increased activities of the MS-13 gangs and of being "in favor of sanctuary cities that let dangerous illegal immigrants back on the streets." Gillespie and Trump said that Northam had been the deciding vote to stop a Republican bill in the state Senate which would have banned sanctuary cities and that this contributed to the surge in MS-13 violence; a notion that FactCheck.org found to be "misleading". The Washington Post and CNN noted that there are no actual sanctuary cities in Virginia. Gillespie himself acknowledged that Virginia did not have sanctuary cities. The Washington Post furthermore noted that there is no evidence that sanctuary cities increase crime or gang activity, and that Virginia communities with higher immigrant populations have lower crime rates.
Later that month, the Latino Victory Fund, which was supporting Northam's campaign, released an ad in which a pickup truck, adorned with a Gillespie bumper sticker, a "Don't tread on me" license plate, and a Confederate flag, chases down minority children and corners them in an alley – one of the children in the ad then wakes up, revealing the scene to have been a nightmare. Although Northam and his campaign were not involved with the ad, Northam initially defended it, saying Gillespie's own ads "have promoted fearmongering, hatred, bigotry, racial divisiveness," and adding, "I mean, it's upset a lot of communities, and they have the right to express their views as well." The ad was pulled the following day in the hours after the terrorist attack in New York City, in which a man killed several people by running them over with a truck. Northam then distanced himself from the ad, re-emphasizing that it was not released by his campaign and saying that it is not one that he would have chosen to run. A spokesman for the campaign said that the Latino Victory Fund's decision to pull the ad was "appropriate and the right thing to do." FOX 5 DC reported that the Northam campaign had accepted $62,000 as an in-kind media contribution from the Latino Victory Fund.
During the final week of the campaign, Northam stated that he would continue opposing a preemptive ban on sanctuary cities in Virginia, as he had done while serving in the lieutenant governor position, although he also stated that if any sanctuary cities emerged in Virginia, he would support banning them. In response, the progressive group Democracy for America stated that it stopped direct aid of Northam's campaign. Howard Dean, who founded Democracy for America, but left the organization in 2016, wrote on Twitter that the organization had discredited itself and called its decision to stop aiding Northam's campaign "incredibly stupid". Democracy for America had already stopped collecting data for Northam and had ceased mentioning him in get-out-the-vote calls, due to the Northam campaign's decision to release LiUNA's flyers omitting Justin Fairfax.
According to The Washington Post, Northam owns stock in several companies "doing extensive work in Virginia". Northam has stated that if elected governor, he would place his financial investments into a blind trust, so as to avoid any potential conflicts of interest.
According to the Virginia Public Access Project, as of November 3, 2017, Northam has raised $33.8 million to Gillespie's $24.5 million.
Northam was elected 73rd Governor of Virginia on November 7, 2017, defeating Ed Gillespie in the general election with a larger-than-expected nine-point margin of victory.
Northam was sworn in as Governor of Virginia at noon on January 13, 2018 at the State Capitol. He became the second Eastern Shore native to serve as Governor of Virginia, after Henry A. Wise (who was elected in 1855) and the second alumnus of Virginia Military Institute to serve as governor, after Westmoreland Davis (who was elected in 1917). A majority of Northam's cabinet secretaries are female, a first in Virginia history. Residents from every county in Virginia attended Northam's inauguration (which reportedly marked another first for the state) and twenty-six groups participated in the inaugural parade, which has been called the largest and most diverse in state history.
Response to Shenandoah Valley Juvenile Center lawsuit
In June 2018, six months into Northam's governorship, a class action lawsuit was publicly disclosed, which had been filed the previous October, claiming that Latino teenage detainees at the Shenandoah Valley Juvenile Center had been physically abused by staff members there. Most of the plaintiffs were being held at the facility on immigration charges. The abuse described in the lawsuit was alleged to have occurred from 2015 through 2018. The Shenandoah Valley Juvenile Center denied all claims in the lawsuit, while Northam called the allegations "disturbing" and directed state agencies to conduct an investigation. Around two months later, the investigation concluded with no findings of ongoing abuse. Allegations of past abuse were not included within the scope of the investigation, and the lawsuit is still pending. Northam urged the facility to adopt new practices, including additional training for staff members, recommended by the Virginia Department of Juvenile Justice. As youth held in Virginia facilities on immigration charges are there through outside contacts with the federal government, the Virginia Department of Juvenile Justice lacked oversight of these youth when the investigation began. In September of that year, the department expanded its authority to include oversight of youth held through any outside contract in Virginia facilities.
On February 1, 2019, images from Northam's medical school yearbook were published on the far-right website Big League Politics. The photos showed an image of an unidentified person in blackface and an unidentified person in a Ku Klux Klan hood on Northam's page in the yearbook. A spokesman for Eastern Virginia Medical School confirmed that the image appeared in its 1984 yearbook. Shortly after the news broke, Northam apologized for appearing in the photo and issued a statement saying,
“Earlier today, a website published a photograph of me from my 1984 medical school yearbook in a costume that is clearly racist and offensive. I am deeply sorry for the decision I made to appear as I did in this photo and for the hurt that decision caused then and now. This behavior is not in keeping with who I am today and the values I have fought for throughout my career in the military, in medicine, and in public service. But I want to be clear, I understand how this decision shakes Virginians’ faith in that commitment. I recognize that it will take time and serious effort to heal the damage this conduct has caused. I am ready to do that important work. The first step is to offer my sincerest apology and to state my absolute commitment to living up to the expectations Virginians set for me when they elected me to be their Governor.”
Prior to issuing his apology, Northam had privately reacted in confusion to the photo and told several people that he did not believe that he was either of the men depicted in the photo. Early that evening, he had also told Lieutenant Governor Justin Fairfax that although he had no recollection of the photo, he considered it a possibility that he was one of the two men depicted. According to The Washington Post, "two people familiar with the events of that evening" said that Northam "decided to take the blame" for the photo due to the pressure on him to issue a statement, even though at the time, Northam was still confused about the photo's origins.
Two days earlier on January 30, Northam had made controversial comments about abortion during a WTOP interview about the Repeal Act, where he stated that if a severely deformed or otherwise non-viable fetus was born after an unsuccessful abortion attempt, "the infant would be resuscitated if that's what the mother and the family desired, and then a discussion would ensue between the physicians and the mother." Conservative politicians and media figures characterized Northam's comments as promoting infanticide. After the yearbook photo was publicized, many conservative media outlets compared the two controversies and described them as a "bad week" for the governor. According to the Washington Post, the photo was sent as a tip to Big League Politics, the website that first published the photo on February 1, by one or more medical school classmates who were concerned about Northam's abortion comments.
The Virginia Senate's Democratic leader, Dick Saslaw, was among the few politicians who initially defended Northam, but later joined with the rest of his caucus in calling for Northam's resignation. Most other prominent Virginia politicians, including former governor Terry McAuliffe, under whom Northam served as lieutenant governor, the Speaker of the House of Delegates, the Virginia Legislative Black Caucus, senators Tim Kaine and Mark Warner in a joint statement with Rep. Bobby Scott, and both the Republican Party of Virginia and Democratic Party of Virginia, called on him to resign. President Donald Trump decried the photo, as well as Northam's earlier comments on abortion, as "unforgivable". Several prominent national Republicans, such as House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy and Republican National Committee chair Ronna Romney McDaniel joined in calling for Northam's resignation. Major national Democratic officials also called for Northam to step down, including 2020 presidential candidates Tulsi Gabbard, Julian Castro, Cory Booker, Kirsten Gillibrand, Elizabeth Warren and Kamala Harris, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, the Democratic Governors Association, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Senator Bernie Sanders, and former Vice President of the United States Joe Biden. Faced with increasing calls for his resignation from fellow Democrats, Northam has reportedly considered leaving the Democratic Party and trying to hold on to the governorship as an independent.
After issuing his apology and as pressure mounted for his resignation, Northam called friends and family to determine whether the photo actually depicts him. The following morning, Northam told staffers that he was convinced he was not in the photo. Sleep-deprived and ignoring the protests of some staffers, Northam held a press conference that afternoon, in which he publicly denied that he was either of the men in the photo, but did admit to having "darkened [his] face" with shoe polish as part of a Michael Jackson costume around the same time. Reaction to the press conference was intensely negative and calls for Northam's resignation continued.
CBS News also unearthed Northam's Virginia Military Institute yearbook, which listed "Coonman", a racial slur, as one of Northam's nicknames; Northam told reporters that two people referred to him by that name, and said that he regretted the presence of the nickname in his yearbook. Northam says that he does not understand why that nickname was bestowed on him.
A months-long investigation into the photo that appeared in the 1984 Eastern Virginia Medical School yearbook could not “conclusively” determine who is in the photo or even how the image ended up there. A team hired by EVMS released a 55-page report May 22, 2019, saying: “We could not conclusively determine the identity of either individual depicted in the photograph.” McGuireWoods contacted over 80 people connected to the school, including five members of their yearbook staff at the time.
The Washington Post described Northam as a moderate state senator who moved to the left on some issues during the 2017 gubernatorial Democratic primary, such as support for a $15 minimum wage and opposition to a state constitutional amendment enshrining right-to-work legislation.
Northam supports abortion rights. In the Virginia General Assembly, he opposed a bill to mandate vaginal ultrasounds for women seeking abortions, and voted against the bill when it was revised to mandate only abdominal ultrasounds. He was endorsed in the 2017 Democratic gubernatorial primary by the abortion rights group NARAL and its Virginia affiliate. Northam has argued for reducing abortion rates through education and expanding access to contraceptives. Planned Parenthood pledged to spend $3 million supporting Northam in his 2017 general election campaign for governor. Northam opposes banning abortions after 20 weeks through a state version of the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act.
For third-trimester abortions, Northam supports Virginia's current law requiring certification by multiple physicians.[a] During a January 2019 radio interview, Northam said that third-trimester abortions may be done in cases of a non-viable fetus or severe deformity. If a delivery occurred in such cases, Northam further stated that, "The infant would be resuscitated if that's what the mother and the family desired, and then a discussion would ensue between the physicians and the mother." This statement drew intense criticism from Republican politicians nationwide, many of whom accused Northam of supporting infanticide.[b]
On the controversies over public monuments to the Confederacy, in June 2017 Northam stated that the statues in the state Capitol that the General Assembly has jurisdiction over "should be taken down and moved into museums", and that the decision on other statues "belongs to local communities." He has said that there should be more public memorials to historical Virginia civil rights leaders such as Barbara Rose Johns, Oliver Hill, and Samuel Wilbert Tucker. In August 2017, Northam took a firmer stance, saying, "I believe these statues should be taken down and moved into museums. As governor, I am going to be a vocal advocate for that approach and work with localities on this issue." Northam later reverted to his original stance that decisions on the monuments should be made locally.
During Virginia's 2017 gubernatorial campaign, both Northam and his opponent, Ed Gillespie, called for the state's felony threshold on theft to be raised, which at $200, was then tied with New Jersey for lowest in the nation. Set in 1980, the threshold's value would have been equal to around $600 in 2017, if it had kept pace with inflation. Outgoing governor Terry McAuliffe had attempted, during his final year in office, to raise the threshold to $500, but was unable to advance such a proposal through the legislature. Both McAuliffe and Northam supported raising the threshold even further to $1,000, which would have been more closely aligned with those found in a majority of other states, while Gillespie approved of a $500 threshold. Following Northam's election to the governorship, The Washington Post identified this issue as an opportunity for bipartisan legislation.
In early February 2018, about a month after his inauguration as governor, Northam struck a deal with the Republican-controlled legislature to raise the felony threshold to $500; in exchange, Northam gave support to Republican-sponsored legislation that would require criminal defendants seeking parole to first pay full restitution to victims. McAuliffe had vetoed a comparable restitution bill the previous year. The Washington Post's editorial board called Northam's compromise "a small step toward fairer justice in Virginia", but voiced concern that the restitution bill would place an onerous burden on poor defendants; the editorial board also noted that the $500 threshold is still one of the country's lowest and still, when adjusted for inflation, under the level that had been set in 1980.
As governor, Northam signed into law a bill imposing a new mandatory minimum sentence for those who are convicted of murdering a police officer. Later during his term, in May 2019, he vowed against signing any further legislation imposing mandatory minimum sentences. In an op-ed for The Washington Post, he argued that such legislation is racially discriminatory and leads to over-incarceration.
Northam supports increasing Virginia's minimum wage, which at $7.25 an hour, has not surpassed the federally mandated level set in 2009. While serving as lieutenant governor in 2014, Northam broke a tie in the Virginia state Senate, passing a bill that would have increased the state's minimum wage by increments. Under the bill, the state's minimum wage would have settled at $9.25 an hour, after two years. The measure was never enacted due to failing in the Virginia House of Delegates. Three years later, as a gubernatorial candidate, Northam proposed that Virginia set its minimum wage at $15 an hour.[c] As governor, Northam plans to campaign against Republican state legislators who oppose a higher minimum wage. Northam has pointed to the costliness of transportation in rural parts of the state to dispute the notion that a $15 minimum wage is too high for those areas. During Northam's first year as governor, he vetoed a bill passed by the Republican-controlled legislature that would have banned localized minimum wages for government contractors.
During his 2017 campaign for governor, Northam was endorsed by the Laborers' International Union of North America; the union praised Northam for his opposition to a "right-to-work" amendment to the Virginia state constitution. Northam criticized the repeal of the car tax under former Governor Jim Gilmore because of its impact on both K-12 and higher education, saying Virginia still has not recovered.
Northam "has called for phasing out the grocery tax on low-income people and ending business taxes in struggling rural areas." He has called for a bipartisan reform commission to make recommendations on state tax policy.
Northam has proposed making it free for students to pursue a community college education or apprenticeship in a high-demand field (such as cybersecurity and early-childhood education) under the condition that they commit to a year of paid public service.
Northam opposes public funding for private schools.
Environment and energy
Northam accepts the scientific consensus on climate change and as a candidate for governor vowed to lead efforts to fight climate change. He pledged, if elected, to bring Virginia into the United States Climate Alliance, a multi-state agreement to uphold greenhouse gas emissions standards. Northam has emphasized the negative effects of climate-change-induced sea level rise on Virginia's Tidewater region.
During his 2017 campaign for governor, Northam pledged if elected to continue implementing the total maximum daily load limits for nitrogen and phosphorus discharges into Chesapeake Bay, a policy that had reduced harmful algal blooms. Northam said he would continue this policy even if the federal government under Donald Trump cut or eliminated funding for the program. During his campaign, Northam was endorsed by the Virginia League of Conservation Voters and the Virginia Sierra Club.
Northam has offered conditional support for the proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline, provided that the pipeline's construction is deemed to be environmentally safe. He has avoided taking a firm stance on other pipelines such as the Mountain Valley Pipeline. He opposes both offshore drilling and fracking.
Northam has supported the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI). In 2019, he vetoed a bill that would have prohibited Virginia from entering into the initiative, but in May 2019, he chose not to veto language in the state budget that prohibits spending related to the initiative, because under Virginia law, governors are generally not allowed to issue line-item vetoes of the state budget. According to The Washington Post, had Northam issued the veto, it could have been challenged in court by the Republican-controlled legislature, and Northam wanted to avoid a long legal confrontation. Northam has said that he will seek to implement RGGI spending in future budgets.
Family leave and child care
When Northam was inaugurated as governor, the family leave policy for executive branch employees in the state of Virginia applied exclusively to employees who had given birth and offered only partial pay. In June 2018, Northam signed an executive order extending the policy to apply to both mothers and fathers, including not only biological parents but also adoptive and foster parents. Under the new policy, employees receive eight weeks off at full pay. Earlier in the year, Republican Speaker of the House of Delegates Kirk Cox had established a similar policy offering legislative branch employees twelve weeks of paid leave.
According to The Washington Post, Northam favors the "reinstatement of Virginia's 'one-gun-a-month' law limiting purchases, as well as a ban on high-capacity magazines and assault weapons."
Northam supports the Affordable Care Act ("Obamacare"), although he has argued that it is in need of improvement. After Republican attempts to repeal the law, Northam called for members of Congress to "put a stop to the uncertainty and work on stabilizing and building on the Affordable Care Act's progress."
Northam opposes a single-payer healthcare system in Virginia, preferring that such a plan be run by the federal government, but supports the creation of a state-run public health insurance option.
On June 7, 2018, Northam signed a bipartisan bill expanding Medicaid in Virginia. This fulfilled one of his central campaign promises. Northam's gubernatorial predecessor, Terry McAuliffe, had tried throughout all four years of his own term in office to enact Medicaid expansion, but McAuliffe was never able to secure enough support from Republicans, who controlled the state legislature at the time.[d] Following the 2017 election, which brought significant gains for Democrats in the Virginia House of Delegates, Republicans still held a narrow legislative majority; during this time however, opposition to Medicaid expansion diminished among Republicans, several of whom were willing to crossover in support of the bill. Once the bill was enacted on January 1, 2019, Virginia became the 33rd state to expand Medicaid and the first to do so since Louisiana in 2016. Enrollment in the expanded program began on November 1, 2018. By the beginning of 2019, more than 200,000 Virginians had enrolled in Medicaid as part of the expansion.
In his 2007 campaign for state Senate, Northam "advocated for Virginia being 'even more stringent than we are now in fighting illegal immigration,' and said the state should act as 'strong partners' with federal law enforcement." Northam's rhetoric shifted in his 2017 gubernatorial campaign. In 2017 Northam pledged to "stand up against ICE" so that "people, especially immigrants, in Virginia aren't living in fear," saying: "Something that we are very proud of in Virginia is that we are inclusive." He continued by saying "We will do everything we can to make sure immigrants are comfortable living here." Northam opposed President Trump's decision to rescind Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), which offered temporary stay for unauthorized immigrants who came to the United States as minors. Northam said Trump's "decision lacks compassion, lacks moral sense, and lacks economic sense." Northam supports granting state driver's licenses and in-state tuition to undocumented immigrants.
In February 2017, Northam cast a tie-breaking vote in the state Senate against a bill to ban sanctuary cities in Virginia. Northam said he was "proud to break a tie when Republicans tried to scapegoat immigrants for political gain" and that he was "glad to put a stop to" the bill. In an October 2017 debate, Northam said he did not support sanctuary cities, stating that there currently were none in Virginia, but Northam declined to say whether he would sign a bill as governor that was similar to the one he voted against in the Senate. In November 2017, Northam clarified that while he would veto any bill pre-emptively banning sanctuary cities in Virginia, he would support a ban, if sanctuary cities began appearing in the state. In April 2018, as governor, Northam vetoed a law that would have pre-emptively banned sanctuary cities in Virginia. He vetoed the same legislation again the following year.
Northam has supported LGBT rights throughout his political career. While running for lieutenant governor in 2013, he criticized his Republican opponent, E. W. Jackson, for making what were widely considered to be divisive statements about LGBT individuals. During a debate with Jackson, who is a minister, Northam said, "What I do in church translates to what I do in everyday life. Whether it's said in my church or whether it's said in my medical clinic or whether it's said before the Senate, it's on me and it's what I believe in." That summer, when the United States Defense Department began offering marriage benefits to military personnel in same-sex relationships, Northam and Jackson disagreed with each other on the issue. Jackson said that because gay marriage was illegal in Virginia at the time, the state should withhold benefits from gay couples serving in its National Guard, while Northam supported the federal policy. Northam said that equalizing benefits for gay couples in the United States military is about "being fair with those who have served our country."
During the 2013 campaign, Northam said that opposition to LGBT rights would create an unwelcoming business environment in Virginia. In 2015, he used his tie-breaking abilities as lieutenant governor to defeat a bill in the state Senate that would have forced Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring to defend the state's gay marriage ban; Herring had argued that the ban was unconstitutional.
In 2017, while running for governor, Northam spoke against the Physical Privacy Act, a bill proposed that year in Virginia, which if passed, would have required people in government facilities to use restrooms corresponding to the gender specified on their original birth certificates. Northam called the Physical Privacy Act a "job-killing, prejudicial bill". Later that same year, before Northam was elected governor, the Physical Privacy Act was defeated in the state legislature.
Northam condemned the decision by President Donald Trump to ban transgender service members from the United States military. Shortly after Trump announced this policy, Northam tweeted, "Anyone who wants to serve our country in the military should be welcomed. They're patriots and should be treated as such."
Northam's first official action as governor was to sign an executive order banning the executive branch of the state government from discriminating against LGBTQ employees. The state of Virginia currently does not have any legislation protecting LGBTQ employees from employment discrimination. Protections on the bases of sexual orientation and gender identity that had been established through an executive order issued by Northam's gubernatorial predecessor, Terry McAuliffe,[f] were maintained by Northam's own executive order, which went further, introducing, for the first time in Virginia, protection on the basis of gender expression.
While serving as lieutenant governor, Northam broke a tie in the state Senate, supporting a bill that would have codified into state law the protections included in McAuliffe's aforementioned executive order. This bill was defeated in the House of Delegates. If passed, it would have applied to all state and local government employees in Virginia; each anti-discrimination executive order issued by a Virginia governor has only applied to employees under the governor's personal authority. Legislation that would have codified Northam's own executive order into state law passed the state Senate in 2018 and 2019, but failed both years to pass in the House of Delegates.
Northam favors decriminalizing marijuana.
During his 2017 campaign for governor, Northam said that if elected, he would approve a map of new Virginia legislative and congressional boundaries in the post-2020 redistricting only if it is drawn by a nonpartisan commission.
In a political commercial called "Listening", run during the Virginia Democratic primary, Northam described the importance to him of listening – as a doctor, to his patients and as lieutenant governor, to his constituents. He ended with, "I've been listening carefully to Donald Trump, and I think he's a narcissistic maniac." As the general election drew near Northam said, "[I]f Donald Trump is helping Virginia, I'll work with him." Northam explained the "softer tone": "I think people already know [their opinions of Trump] and they are judging for themselves. What we are talking about as we move forward are the policies that are coming out of Washington that are so detrimental to Virginia".
Campaign and voting legislation
In January 2019, Northam introduced legislation including bills to end Virginia's photo ID law and a bill to allow absentee "no-excuse" voting to replace the current law which contains limits. He is also proposing new campaign finance limits that would block direct donations from corporations, cap donations at $10,000, and prohibit the personal use of campaign funds by lawmakers.
Northam lives in the Executive Mansion in Richmond. He and his wife Pam have two adult children, Wes and Aubrey. Northam's brother, Thomas Northam, is a lawyer  and the law partner of Virginia State Senate member Lynwood Lewis, who was elected to the State Senate to replace Northam when he resigned his State Senate seat to assume the position of lieutenant governor. Their father, Wescott Northam, is a retired Accomack County judge, former Commonwealth's Attorney, and Navy veteran.
Northam belongs to a predominately black Baptist church in Capeville, Virginia and serves as the vice chair of the Fort Monroe Authority, which oversees Fort Monroe, a Civil War historic site where Union General Benjamin Butler sheltered freed slaves. In his free time, Northam enjoys working on classic cars. He owns a 1953 Oldsmobile and a 1971 Corvette.
Northam is a recreational runner and a competitor in races including the Richmond Road Runners' First Day 5k and the Monument Avenue 10K race.
|Republican||Benito Loyola Jr.||12,622||43.1%||-3.4|
|Republican||E. W. Jackson||980,257||44.5%||-12.0|
- This law allows third-trimester abortions to be certified by a single physician if continued pregnancy is found to pose an imminent danger to a woman's life.
- Northam's full answer to the abortion question during the interview with NBC4 reporter Julie Carey, WTOP-FM on January 30, 2019
- Northam's Democratic primary opponent, Tom Perriello, had adopted the same position one day before Northam.
- MedicAid expansion had been a central promise of McAuliffe's own gubernatorial campaign during the 2013 election.
- Military service members are exempted from the bill.
- Protection in the executive branch of the Virginia state government from employment discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation was first introduced through an executive order issued in 2005, by then-governor Mark Warner and was maintained by Warner's gubernatorial successor, Tim Kaine. The policy was repealed in 2010 by Kaine's own successor, Bob McDonnell. In 2014, McAuliffe re-instated the policy and expanded it to include, for the first time in Virginia, protection on the basis of gender identity.
- "Dr. Ralph Northam MD". U.S. News & World Report. U.S. News & World Report L.P. Retrieved February 1, 2018.
- Martin, Johnathan; Burns, Alexander (November 8, 2017). "Ralph Northam Wins the Virginia Governor's Race". New York Times. Retrieved November 8, 2017.
- Emily Satchell (May 16, 2017). "Meet the candidates: Democrat Ralph Northam". WAVY-TV. Retrieved June 15, 2018.
- Shreesha Ghosh (October 6, 2017). "Who Is Ralph Northam? Trump Says Virginia Gubernatorial Candidate Supports MS-13 Gang". International Business Times. Retrieved June 15, 2018.
- Schneider, Gregory (October 24, 2017). "The lure of the steady physician: Is Northam's résumé enough in the age of Trump?". Washington Post. Retrieved February 1, 2018.
- Kate Andrews (October 16, 2017). "Son of the Shore". Richmond Magazine. Retrieved June 16, 2018.
- Carol Vaughn (November 7, 2017). "Eastern Shore native Ralph Northam will be the next Virginia governor". DelmarvaNOW.com. Retrieved January 15, 2018.
- Harry Minium (March 7, 2007). "Ocean View resident to run for Va. Senate". The Virginian Pilot.
- Patrick Wilson (June 2, 2017). "Ralph Northam's ancestors owned slaves. He found out only recently". Richmond Times-Dispatch. Retrieved June 16, 2018.
- Jenna Portnoy, Ralph Northam, Va.'s low-key lieutenant governor, juggles politics and pediatrics, Washington Post (July 27, 2014).
- "Nancy B. Shearer Wed; Johns Hopkins Graduate is Bride of Wescott Northam". The New York Times. April 29, 1956.
- Gregory S. Schneider (November 4, 2017). "Ralph Northam: Amid politics of extremes, candidate sticks to mild image". The Roanoke Times. Retrieved June 15, 2018.
- Kevin Robillard, How Donald Trump Blew Up the Virginia Governor's Race, Politico Magazine (April 13, 2017).
- Lieutenant Governor: Ralph Northam, The Virginian-Pilot.
- Full interview transcript: Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam, Washington Post (June 1, 2017).
- Graham Moomaw, After giving Democrats a brief scare in 2009, Northam says he'd be 'steady hand' as governor, Richmond Times-Dispatch (June 3, 2017).
- Zagursky, Erin. "Virginia's new governor to help celebrate W&M's 325th year". William & Mary. Retrieved February 1, 2018.
- Jenna Portnoy, Ralph Northam, Va.’s low-key lieutenant governor, juggles politics and pediatrics, Washington Post (July 27, 2014).
- Harry Minium, Norfolk doctor had key role in state ultrasound debate, Virginian-Pilot (March 11, 2012).
- Ralph S. Northam, Children's hospitals offer many advantages, Richmond Times-Disparch (August 8, 2015).
- Fenit Nirappil, Northam grilled on campaign finance, Perriello on abortion at progressive forum, Washington Post (May 3, 2017).
- Jonathan Martin, Primary for Virginia Governor Tests Power of an Anti-Trump Campaign, New York Times (February 26, 2017).
- Virginia State Board of Elections; Election Results for 2007; November 6, 2007 Election Results
- Virginia State Board of Elections; Election Results for 2011; 2011 November Official Election Results
- Two Democratic hopefuls for Va. governor on schools, Metro and the minimum wage, Washington Post (June 4, 2017).
- McAuliffe has change of heart on Confederate statues, Washington Post (August 16, 2017).
- Kumar, Anita. "Va. Senate Democrats' Edge Little Comfort", Washington Post, February 21, 2009.
- Linkins, Jason. "Jeff Frederick's Twitter Use Foils GOP Virginia Senate Coup", Huffington Post, March 13, 2009.
- Payne, Kimball. Northam's Move To Share Power Turns Heads, Hampton Roads Daily Press, February 14, 2009.
- Walker, Julian (November 19, 2011). "State Sen. Northam spurns GOP offer to switch sides". The Virginian-Pilot. Retrieved October 31, 2013.
- Vozzella, Laura (December 2, 2012). "Sen. Ralph Northam announces lieutenant governor bid". The Washington Post. Retrieved October 31, 2013.
- Walker, Julian (April 2, 2013). "McAuliffe named Dem governor nominee, 4 others make ballot". The Virginian-Pilot. Retrieved April 3, 2013.
- Pershing, Ben; Whack, Errin (June 11, 2013). "Democrats give nod to Northam, Herring in statewide races". The Washington Post. Retrieved June 12, 2013.
- "Virginia SBE – Democratic Lieutenant Governor primary results". Archived from the original on June 15, 2013.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on November 9, 2013. Retrieved November 12, 2013.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
- Vozzella, Laura (February 24, 2015). "Ralph Northam confirms he's running to become next Va. governor". The Washington Post. Retrieved March 25, 2015.
- Nolan, Jim (February 25, 2015). "Northam exploring run for governor in 2017". Richmond Times-Dispatch. Retrieved March 25, 2015.
- Vozzella, Laura (November 17, 2015). "Virginia's lieutenant governor makes it official: He's seeking state's top job". The Washington Post. Retrieved December 18, 2015.
- A Fight for the Soul of the Democratic Party in Virginia (The Atlantic)
- Fenit Nirappil; Gregory S. Schneider; Laura Vozzella (June 11, 2017). "Virginia gubernatorial candidates make final pitches before Tuesday's primary". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 8, 2019.
- The Washington Post editorial board (June 6, 2017). "The Post's endorsements in Virginia's gubernatorial primaries". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 7, 2019.
- "Virginia Primary Results: Northam Will Face Gillespie in Governor's Race" – via www.nytimes.com.
- Patrick Wilson (November 4, 2017). "Republican Ed Gillespie: A Reagan conservative tries to appeal and prevail in the age of Trump". Richmond Times-Dispatch. Retrieved February 8, 2019.
- Fenit Nirappil (September 29, 2017). "George W. Bush coming to Virginia to raise money for Ed Gillespie". Retrieved February 8, 2019.
- Gregory S. Schneider (August 10, 2017). "Candidates hit the airwaves in Virginia's race for governor". The Roanoke Times. Retrieved August 16, 2017.
- Nirappil, Fenit (September 16, 2017). "Democrat has twice the cash of opponent in Va. governor's race". The Washington Post. Retrieved October 7, 2017.
- Wilson, Patrick. "Gubernatorial candidate Ralph Northam campaign flier removes picture of LG candidate Justin Fairfax". Richmond Times-Dispatch. Retrieved October 21, 2017.
- Nirappil, Fenit (October 19, 2017). "Black Democrat omitted from some Democratic campaign fliers in Virginia". The Washington Post. Retrieved October 21, 2017.
- "Ed Gillespie's 'Sanctuary Cities' Attacks". FactCheck.org. Annenberg Public Policy Center. September 26, 2017.
- Nirappil, Fenit (October 6, 2017). "Trump backs Republican for Va. governor, accuses the Democrat of enabling 'violent MS-13 killer gangs'". Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved October 7, 2017.
- Eric Bradner. "Why Trump is linking the MS-13 gang to the Virginia governor's race". CNN. Retrieved October 7, 2017.
- Weigel, David; Vozzella, Laura (November 2, 2017). "Republicans in Virginia and nationwide are using 'sanctuary cities' as a weapon against Democrats". Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved November 4, 2017.
- Olivo, Antonio (November 3, 2017). "GMU report gives context to Gillespie's MS-13 attack ads in Va. governor's race". Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved November 5, 2017.
- White House knocks 'political racism' after ad against Virginia Republican (The Hill)
- 'Latino Victory Fund' Ad Depicts Ed Gillespie Supporter Terrorizing Minority Children (RealClearPolitics)
- Ed O'Keefe; Gregory S. Schneider; Fenit Nirappil (October 31, 2017). "New anti-Gillespie ad sparked by worries about Northam's appeal to minorities". Washington Post. Retrieved November 3, 2017.
- Political attack ad showing kids running from Republican pickup truck driver is pulled after New York terror attack (New York Daily News)
- 10 On Your Side talks with candidates for Virginia governor (WAVY-TV)
- Records show financial connection between Northam campaign and group behind controversial ad (WTTG-TV)
- Northam says he'd ban sanctuary cities if one ever appears in Virginia (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
- Progressive group ends 'direct aid' to Northam (The Hill)
- Nicole Gaudiano (November 3, 2017). "Progressive Group Pulls Aid to Virginia's Democratic Candidate for Governor Over 'Gutless' Position". USA Today. Retrieved November 4, 2017.
- Progressives fume as Northam stumbles in Va. (The Hill)
- Sanctuary cities flip-flop costly for Virginia Dem Ralph Northam (Fox News)
- Obama back on campaign trail to rally for Ralph Northam in Richmond (Washington Post)
- Former Vice President Biden campaigns for Ralph Northam in roundtable discussion (AP)
- Ready (or not) to choose Virginia’s next governor? A guide to the race and issues (Washington Post)
- VPAP – 2017 Governor (accessed November 3, 2017)
- "Democrat Ralph Northam wins Virginia's hard-fought race for governor. @AP race call at 8:12 p.m. EST". Associated Press.
- Laura Vozzella; Fenit Nirappil; Gregory S. Schneider (January 13, 2018). "Fiddlers, native Americans and a champion oyster shucker salute new Va. governor". Washington Post. Retrieved January 15, 2018.
- Carol Vaughn (December 14, 2017). "Virginia Governor-elect Ralph Northam talks Shore roots, priorities for rural Virginia". DelmarvaNOW.com. Retrieved January 15, 2018.
- Fenit Nirrapil (January 11, 2018). "Ralph Northam assembles a majority-female Cabinet, a first for Virginia". Washington Post. Retrieved January 13, 2018.
- Gregory S. Schneider (January 12, 2018). "Helicopters and oysters: Richmond prepares for Northam's inauguration". Washington Post. Retrieved January 15, 2018.
- Evanne Armour (January 13, 2018). "Watch: Inauguration of Virginia's 73rd governor". WJHL-TV. Retrieved January 15, 2018.
- "Editorial: Northam gives the inaugural address Virginia – and the nation – needs". The Roanoke Times. January 14, 2018. Retrieved January 15, 2018.
- Michael Bieseker; Jake Pearson; Garance Burke (June 21, 2018). "Governor orders probe of abuse claims by immigrant children". Associated Press. Retrieved October 3, 2018.
- Gregory S. Schneider (June 21, 2018). "Virginia governor calls for probe into abuse allegations at facility that holds immigrant teens". Washington Post. Retrieved October 3, 2018.
- Laura Vozzella (August 13, 2018). "Va. probe finds no evidence of abuse at facility for young immigrant detainees". Washington Post. Retrieved October 3, 2018.
- Laura Peters (September 6, 2018). "State expands oversight into juvenile facilities". The News Leader. Retrieved February 16, 2019.
- WHSV newsroom (September 6, 2018). "Virginia officials expand oversight of youth at Shenandoah Valley Juvenile Center". WHSV-TV. Retrieved February 16, 2019.
- Gabriel, Trip, and Michael M. Grynbaum. "With Northam Picture, Obscure Publication Plays Big Role in Virginia Politics", The New York Times, February 4, 2019. Retrieved February 10, 2019.
- Farhi, Paul (February 3, 2019). "A tip from a 'concerned citizen' helps a reporter land the scoop of a lifetime". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 3, 2019.
- Dareh Gregorian; Hallie Jackson (February 2, 2019). "Va. Gov. Northam's yearbook pic of men in blackface, Klan robe spurs calls for his resignation". NBCNews.com. Retrieved February 15, 2019.
- Vozzella, Laura; Morrison, Jim; Schneider, Gregory S. (February 1, 2019). "Gov. Ralph Northam 'deeply sorry' after photo emerges from his 1984 yearbook showing blackface, KKK hood". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 1, 2019.
- "Ralph Northam yearbook page shows men in blackface and KKK robe". Virginian-Pilot. February 1, 2019. Retrieved February 1, 2019.
- Kelly, Caroline (February 1, 2019). "Virginia governor's yearbook page shows 2 people in blackface, KKK garb". CNN. Retrieved February 1, 2019.
- Virginia governor confirms 1984 yearbook page with racist imagery (Associated Press)
- Gov. Ralph Northam 'deeply sorry' after photo emerges from his 1984 yearbook showing blackface, KKK hood (Washington Post)
- Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam: 'I am deeply sorry for the decision I made' (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
- Gov. Ralph Northam ‘deeply sorry’ for blackface, KKK robe yearbook photo (WTVR)
- Gregory S. Schneider; Laura Vozzella (February 5, 2019). "'This isn't me': Gov. Northam's defiance caught advisers off guard". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 6, 2019.
- Gregory S. Schneider; Laura Vozzella (February 2, 2019). "Fairfax was preparing to be Va. governor. Then Northam said he was staying put". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 6, 2019.
- Laura Vozzella; Gregory S. Schneider (February 2, 2019). "Gov. Northam refuses to step down, despite flood of calls for his resignation over racist photo". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 6, 2019.
- Gregory S. Schneider; Laura Vozzella (January 30, 2019). "Abortion bill draws GOP outrage against Va. Gov. Northam, Democratic legislators". Washington Post. Retrieved January 31, 2019.
- Alan Suderman (January 30, 2019). "Virginia abortion feud erupts; governor blasted for comments". Associated Press. Retrieved May 31, 2019.
- Vespa, Matt. "It's Him: VA Gov Northam Apologizes For Racist Costume In Med School Yearbook Photo", Townhall, February 1, 2019.
- Pappas, Alex. "Ralph Northam apologizes for medical school yearbook photo with blackface, KKK robe", Fox News, February 2, 2019.
- Virginia governor’s 1984 yearbook page features people in blackface and KKK hood (Vox)
- Khatami, Elham. "Dick Saslaw was the lone VA Democrat to rush to Northam’s defense. It could cost him re-election.", ThinkProgress, February 3, 2019.
- Terry McAuliffe [@TerryMcAuliffe] (February 1, 2019). "The situation that he has put himself and the Commonwealth of Virginia in is untenable. It's time for Ralph to step down, and for the Commonwealth to move forward" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
- Campbell Robertson (April 2, 2019). "'It Just Went Poof': The Strange Aftermath of Virginia's Cascade of Political Scandals". The New York Times. Retrieved April 3, 2019.
the speaker of the House, Delegate Kirk Cox, who’d declared that Mr. Northam’s “ability to lead and govern is permanently impaired.”
- @VaBlackCaucus (February 1, 2019). "The Virginia Legislative Black Caucus Demands Governor Northam Resigns" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
- "Warner, Kaine, Scott call on Northam to resign", Richmond Times-Dispatch, February 2, 2019.
- "Virginia Democrats no longer support Northam; Demand his immediate resignation". Democratic Party of Virginia. February 2, 2019. Retrieved February 2, 2019.
- Virginia GOP calls for Northam to resign if he’s in photo in blackface or KKK robe (The Hill)
- Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam admits he posed in yearbook photo showing men in blackface, Klan robe (Richmond Times-Dispatch)
- Porter, Tom. "Trump Describes Northam KKK Pic as 'Unforgivable,' And Slams Virginia Governor for Abortion Comment", Newsweek, February 3, 2019.
- McCarthy, Kevin [@GOPLeader]. "VA Governor Ralph Northam’s past racist behavior caps a week where he displayed an egregious lack of respect for human dignity and the American values that we fight every day to uphold. Staying in office only poisons efforts to grow together as one nation. He should resign.", Twitter, February 2, 2019.
- McDaniel, Ronna [@GOPChairwoman]. Democrat Gov. Ralph Northam’s past: 1981: You had a racist nickname in your college yearbook. 1984: Pictures appear in your medical school yearbook of you in either blackface or a KKK robe. 2013: After a debate, you refuse to shake your African American opponent’s hand. "2017: You edited out your African American running mate Justin Fairfax’s photo from your campaign fliers. Now you’re clearly lying about your racist past to save yourself. Republicans and Democrats agree, Ralph Northam, you must resign.", Twitter, February 2, 2019.
- Daugherty, Owen (February 1, 2019). "Harris calls on Northam to resign over KKK, blackface yearbook photo". The Hill. Retrieved February 1, 2019.
- Finnegan, Michael; Barabak, Mark Z. (February 1, 2019). "Kamala Harris, Elizabeth Warren and others call on Virginia governor to quit over KKK photo". Los Angeles Times.
- Pelosi, Nancy [@speakerpelosi] (February 2, 2019). "The photo is racist and contrary to fundamental American values. I join my colleagues in Virginia calling on Governor Northam to do the right thing so that the people of the Commonwealth of Virginia can heal and move forward" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
- Kapur, Sahil [@sahilkapur] (February 2, 2019). "Democratic Governors Association calls on Ralph Northam to resign" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
- Clinton, Hillary [@HillaryClinton] (February 2, 2019). "This has gone on too long. There is nothing to debate. He must resign" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
- "Bernie Sanders: Northam should resign so Virginia can 'begin a new day'". The Hill. February 2, 2019. Retrieved February 4, 2019.
- @NBCpolitics (February 2, 2019). "JUST IN: Former VP and potential 2020 presidential candidate Joe Biden: "There is no place for racism in America. Governor Northam has lost all moral authority and should resign immediately, Justin Fairfax is the leader Virginia needs now."" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
- ‘This isn’t me’: Gov. Northam’s defiance caught advisers off guard (Washington Post)
- Ralph Northam mulls leaving Democratic Party to hold onto governor's seat (Washington Examiner)
- Martin, Jonathan; Gabriel, Trip; Blinder, Alan (February 2, 2019). "Ralph Northam Resists Calls to Resign as Virginia Governor Over Racist Yearbook Photo". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved February 2, 2019.
- Caputo, Marc. "Northam refuses to resign but says he once did Michael Jackson blackface". Politico. Politico. Retrieved February 2, 2019.
- Segers, Grace (February 2, 2019). "Virginia governor says he was not in racist yearbook photo". CBS News. Retrieved February 2, 2019.
- Caputo, Marc. "6 moments of weirdness with Ralph Northam". Politico. Politico. Retrieved February 3, 2019.
- Ingles, Laura; Baldwin, Brent (February 6, 2019). "What's Next? After a racist photo in Gov. Ralph Northam's medical school yearbook surfaces, the governorship of Virginia is left in question". Richmond, Virginia: STYLE weekly. pp. 5–6.
- Leonor, Mel; Martz, Michael (May 22, 2019). "Probe inconclusive; EVMS president knew of racist photo on Northam's page and said nothing". The Daily Progress. Retrieved May 22, 2019.
- Vozzella, Laura (September 30, 2017). "Gillespie wins key backing after vowing to oppose transgender bathroom bills". Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved September 30, 2017.
- "Q&A: Ralph Northam Aims For the Governor's Mansion in Virginia".
- Norfolk doctor had key role in state ultrasound debate (Virginian-Pilot)
- Fenit Nirappil, Abortion rights group NARAL endorses Northam in Virginia Democratic primary, Washington Post (March 13, 2017).
- Va. arm of Planned Parenthood to spend $3 million backing Northam for governor (Washington Post)
- For both sides of abortion debate, unusually high stakes in Virginia governor’s race (Washington Post)
- Julie Carey, Ralph Northam (January 30, 2019). Ask the Governor with Va. Gov. Ralph Northam (video). WTOP-FM. Event occurs at 38:46-41:03. Retrieved February 2, 2019.
- Rick Massimo (January 30, 2019). "Virginia Gov. Northam on road projects, teacher pay, shutdown impact, more". WTOP. Retrieved February 1, 2019.
- "§ 18.2-74.1. Abortion, etc., when necessary to save life of woman". Virginia's Legislative Information System. Retrieved March 3, 2019.
- Graham Moomaw (January 30, 2019). "Trump reacts after Va. Republicans share video of lawmaker backing late-term abortions; Democrats call it an 'orchestrated ambush'". Richmond Times-Dispatch. Retrieved January 31, 2019.
- Kathryn Watson (January 31, 2019). "Virginia governor under fire for comments on late-term abortion bill". CBS News. Retrieved January 31, 2019.
- Sarah Jones (January 31, 2019). "Here Are the Facts Behind an Abortion Controversy Engulfing Virginia Democrats". Daily Intelligencer. Retrieved January 31, 2019.
- McAuliffe has change of heart on Confederate statues (Washington Post)
- Schneider, Gregory S.; Vozzella, Laura; Nirappil, Fenit (November 4, 2017). "In the final sprint to Election Day, a historic push to turn out voters in Va" – via www.washingtonpost.com.
- Va. gubernatorial contenders clash over monuments, the economy in first TV debate (Washington Post)
- Fenit Nirappil (November 5, 2017). "Ready (or not) to choose Virginia's next governor? A guide to the race and issues". Washington Post. Retrieved December 7, 2018.
- Laura Vozzella (January 9, 2018). "Va. General Assembly convenes after weeks of drama, upheaval". Washington Post. Retrieved December 7, 2018.
- Gregory S. Schneider (February 8, 2018). "Northam, Republicans reach bipartisan deal on criminal justice reform bills". Washington Post. Retrieved December 7, 2018.
- Laura Vozzella; Justin Jouvenal (January 3, 2017). "McAuliffe proposes criminal justice reforms". Washington Post. Retrieved December 7, 2018.
- Laura Vozzella (February 25, 2017). "Virginia legislature gavels out after passing budget that closes $1.2 billion hole". Washington Post. Retrieved December 7, 2018.
- Gregory S. Schneider (September 6, 2017). "Gillespie touts criminal justice reform beyond what GOP legislature has embraced". Washington Post. Retrieved December 7, 2018.
- Gregory S. Scheider (December 25, 2017). "Could a split Virginia House force delegates to get along? It's happened before". Washington Post. Retrieved December 7, 2018.
- Washington Post editorial board (February 10, 2018). "Virginia takes one small step toward fairer justice". Washington Post. Retrieved December 7, 2018.
- Ralph Northam (May 1, 2019). "Ralph Northam: I won't sign another mandatory minimum sentence bill into law. Here's why". The Washington Post. Retrieved May 2, 2019.
- Laura Vozzella (May 1, 2019). "With two vetoes, Northam swears off mandatory sentencing minimums". The Washington Post. Retrieved May 2, 2019.
- Amy Friedenberger (May 1, 2019). "Gov. Ralph Northam will sign no additional mandatory minimum legislation for remainder of term". The Roanoke Times. Retrieved May 2, 2019.
- Moomaw, Graham (July 23, 2017). "At first debate, Northam calls Trump 'a dangerous man' as Gillespie says 'resistance' could hurt Virginia". Richmond Times-Dispatch. Retrieved June 4, 2018.
Northam said he opposed the death penalty, and Gillespie said he supports it.
- Fenit Nirappil (March 9, 2017). "Virginia Democratic gubernatorial candidates pitch $15 minimum wage". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 6, 2019.
- Luz Lazo; Lori Aratani (April 19, 2017). "After a two year fight, contract workers at National and Dulles airports win a pay increase". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 7, 2019.
- Augusta Free Press staff (February 11, 2014). "State Senate passes minimum wage increase". Augusta Free Press. Retrieved February 6, 2019.
- Dave Ress (December 2, 2014). "Nationwide wave of minimum wage increase proposals coming to Va". Daily Press. Retrieved February 6, 2019.
- Augusta Free Press staff (February 13, 2014). "House committee kills minimum wage increase". Augusta Free Press. Retrieved February 13, 2019.
- Ralph Northam, Tom Perriello (June 4, 2017). "Two Democratic hopefuls for Va. governor on schools, Metro and the minimum wage". The Washington Post (Interview). Interviewed by Lee Hockstader. Retrieved February 7, 2019.
- Gregory S. Schneider; Laura Vozzella (April 17, 2018). "Deja vu: Virginia House again approves Medicaid expansion, but Senate yet to act". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 8, 2019.
- LiUNA Endorses Ralph Northam for Virginia Governor Archived June 15, 2017, at the Wayback Machine (press release),
- Interview with Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam, Northam for Governor (April 20, 2017).
- Graham Moomaw, Northam and Gillespie clash over economy, taxes, Trump, Richmond Times-Dispatch (September 19, 2017).
- Fenit Nirappil, Va. Democratic gubernatorial hopefuls vow to defy Trump on climate change, Washington Post (June 2, 2017).
- Robert Zullo, At Virginia gubernatorial forum on clean water, not much daylight between candidates, Richmond Times-Dispatch (September 6, 2017).
- Laura Vozzella (July 22, 2017). "In first debate, Gillespie and Northam tangle over Trump and other issues". Washington Post. Retrieved August 16, 2017.
- Gregory S. Schneider, Dominion letter shows why staying neutral on pipeline project could help Northam, Washington Post (May 16, 2017).
- Carmen Forman, Northam, Perriello clash over pipelines, taxes at Roanoke debate, Roanoke Times (May 4, 2017).
- Schneider, Gregory S. (May 2, 2019). "Northam retains GOP language in budget to keep Va. out of carbon-reduction plan". The Washington Post. Retrieved May 7, 2019.
- Laura Vozzella (June 26, 2018). "With executive order, Va. governor expands paid family leave for state employees". Washington Post. Retrieved June 30, 2018.
- Laura Vozzella (December 15, 2017). "Va. Republican House leader backs expanded family leave as party seeks to rebrand". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 13, 2019.
- Fenit Nirappil (March 28, 2017). "Pragmatism vs. populism at cordial final debate in Va. Democratic gubernatorial race". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 13, 2019.
- Nirappil, Fenit (May 4, 2017). "This Democrat's ad shows Republicans crushing Obamacare. Literally" – via www.washingtonpost.com.
- Trump's decision to cut ACA payments elevates health care in Virginia governor's race (Washington Post)
- Laura Vozzella (June 7, 2018). "Northam signs Medicaid expansion into law on steps of Virginia Capitol". Washington Post. Retrieved October 7, 2018.
- Laura Vozzella (February 15, 2018). "Rural legislator from southwest Va. breaks the 'Republican Dam' for Medicaid expansion". Washington Post. Retrieved October 7, 2018.
- Matthew Yglesias (May 30, 2018). "Virginia's state Senate just voted to expand Medicaid". Vox. Retrieved October 17, 2018.
- Gregory S. Schneider (January 25, 2018). "Medicaid expansion gets off to a rough start in Virginia legislature". Washington Post. Retrieved October 7, 2018.
- Laura Vozzella (April 6, 2018). "A key Virginia GOP state senator says he is willing to break ranks and vote to expand Medicaid". Washington Post. Retrieved October 7, 2018.
- Laura Vozzella (May 30, 2018). "Virginia General Assembly approves Medicaid expansion to 400,000 low-income residents". Washington Post. Retrieved October 17, 2018.
- Amy Goldstein; Laura Vozzella (May 31, 2018). "Why the Trump administration made it easier for Virginia Republicans to expand Medicaid". Washington Post. Retrieved October 17, 2018.
- John McGlennon (May 1, 2018). "Virginia Is On The Verge Of Giving Health Coverage To 400,000, But There's A Catch". Huffington Post. Retrieved October 17, 2018.
- Laura Vozzella (October 18, 2018). "Enrollment in Va.'s expanded Medicaid program starts Nov. 1". Washington Post. Retrieved October 20, 2018.
- WAVY (December 30, 2018). "Gov. Northam says Medicaid has more than 200,000 enrolled". WRIC. Retrieved January 1, 2019.
- Associated Press staff (February 21, 2019). "Virginia gov signs ban on people under 21 buying tobacco". Associated Press. Retrieved February 22, 2019.
- Max Smith (March 4, 2019). "Virginia Gov. Northam signing bills as he tries to get beyond blackface scandal". WTOP. Retrieved March 5, 2019.
- Va. gubernatorial candidates Northam, Gillespie weigh in on immigration (WJLA)
- Laura Vozzella (September 9, 2017). "Gillespie says 'dreamers' should not be deported". Washington Post.
- Two Democratic hopefuls for Va. governor on schools, Metro and the minimum wage (Washington Post)
- Virginia governor candidates trade blows in final debate (Politico)
- "Northam vetoes bill that would prohibit 'sanctuary cities'". NBC12. April 8, 2018. Retrieved April 27, 2018.
- Associated Press staff (March 19, 2019). "Virginia governor vetoes sanctuary cities bill". Associated Press. Retrieved March 21, 2019.
- Errin Whack (June 2, 2013). "Democrats vying for lieutenant governor share vision for office". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 14, 2019.
- Fenit Nirappil (February 16, 2017). "In Va. governor's race, Democrats are battling to be the most progressive". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 14, 2019.
- Michael Laris; Antonio Olivo (September 24, 2013). "E.W. Jackson, Ralph Northam square off in Virginia lieutenant governor debate". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 14, 2019.
- Robert McCartney (September 24, 2013). "Ralph Northam eventually draws contrast with E.W. Jackson in Virginia lt. governor's debate". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 14, 2019.
- Frederick Kunkle; Michael Laris (October 2, 2013). "Va. attorney general hopefuls conduct spirited but civilized debate". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 15, 2019.
- Laura Vozzella (June 12, 2013). "Va. Democratic ticket appears in Richmond". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 14, 2019.
- Laura Vozzella (February 23, 2015). "Va. Senate defeats bill to require attorney general to defend state law". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 14, 2019.
- Laura Vozzella (January 12, 2017). "Va. lawmaker presses fellow Republicans on transgender 'bathroom bill'". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 14, 2019.
- Fenit Nirappil (February 2, 2017). "Poll: Northam, Gillespie ahead in Va. governor primaries but most voters undecided". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 14, 2019.
- Jenna Portnoy (June 26, 2017). "Votes by GOP Reps. Comstock, Taylor on transgender issue reflect political landscape". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 14, 2019.
- Laura Vozzella (February 8, 2018). "Va. House panel kills bills to ban anti-LGBT discrimination in housing and jobs". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 16, 2019.
- Megan Woo (January 13, 2018). "Governor Northam signs three executive orders after taking office". WWBT. Retrieved June 17, 2019.
- Michael Paul Williams (February 12, 2015). "Williams: LGBT employees need protection from discrimination". Richmond Times-Dispatch. Retrieved June 17, 2019.
- Samantha Allen (February 1, 2019). "Two LGBT Rights Bills Were Just Killed In Virginia, But The Battle Isn't Over". The Daily Beast. Retrieved February 17, 2019.
- Augusta Free Press staff (February 3, 2015). "Lieutenant Governor Northam casts tiebreaking vote to end employment discrimination in state government". Augusta Free Press. Retrieved February 16, 2019.
- UPI NewsTrack staff (December 17, 2005). "Va. gov gives gays equal rights in hiring". UPI NewsTrack.
- The Virginian Pilot staff (December 24, 2005). "Gimmick justified to end hiring bias". The Virginian Pilot.
- Christina Nuckols (February 25, 2006). "McDonnell rules Kaine out of order on gay hires". The Virginian Pilot.
- Rosalind S. Helderman (January 31, 2010). "McDonnell has not issued order banning state workforce bias". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 16, 2019.
- Rosalind S. Helderman (February 10, 2010). "Virginia governor's anti-bias order removes language regarding sexual orientation". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 16, 2019.
- GAYRVA staff (November 7, 2013). "McAuliffe Promises to Include Sexual Orientation in State Employment List of Protected Classes, No Mention of Gender Identity". GayRVA. Archived from the original on July 19, 2014. Retrieved February 16, 2019.
- Olympia Meola (January 11, 2014). "Highlights of Terry McAuliffe's rainy inauguration". Richmond Times-Dispatch. Retrieved February 17, 2019.
- Michael Sluss (January 11, 2014). "At inauguration, McAuliffe asks for equality 'for all of Virginia's children'". The Roanoke Times. Retrieved February 17, 2019.
- Kenric Ward (November 18, 2013). "McAuliffe's executive orders don't sit well with political opponents". Alexandria Times. Retrieved February 16, 2019.
- Rachel Weiner; Mark Berman (January 11, 2014). "McAuliffe sworn in as Virginia governor". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 16, 2019.
- Marilyn Drew Necci (January 13, 2018). "Northam's First Executive Order Expands Workplace Protections to LGBTQ State Employees". GayRVA. Archived from the original on June 16, 2018. Retrieved February 17, 2019.
- Cite error: The named reference
WVTFwas invoked but never defined (see the help page).
- Fenit Nirappil (February 16, 2017). "Virginia governor's race: Democrats Northam, Perriello on hot-button issues". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 16, 2019.
- The editorial board of The Free Lance-Star (February 19, 2015). "Editorial: House of Delegates rejects bills to guarantee fairness in state employment". The Free Lance-Star. Retrieved February 17, 2019.
- Travis Fain (February 2, 2016). "In LGBTQ votes, a shift among Senate Republicans". Daily Press. Retrieved February 17, 2019.
- Laura Vozzella (February 8, 2018). "Va. House panel kills bills to ban anti-LGBT discrimination in housing and jobs". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 17, 2019.
- Patricia Sullivan (February 15, 2019). "LGBT activists upset with loss of Va. anti-discrimination bills turn to November". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 17, 2019.
- Graham Moomaw (July 24, 2017). "At 1st gubernatorial debate, Northam and Gillespie draw sharp contrasts". Richmond Times-Dispatch. Culpeper Star-Exponent. Retrieved August 17, 2017.
- Nirappil, Fenit (June 4, 2017). "Why this Democratic candidate, who has an M.D., calls Trump a 'narcissistic maniac'". The Washington Post. Retrieved October 7, 2017.
- Nirappil, Fenit (October 3, 2017). "Why Ralph Northam doesn't call Trump a 'narcissistic maniac' anymore". The Washington Post. Retrieved October 7, 2017.
- "Gov. Northam pushes absentee voting, campaign finance bills". WHSV 3.
- Sullivan, Heather (January 8, 2018). "Meet Virginia's new First Lady Pam Northam". NBC 12. Retrieved February 1, 2018.
- Vaughn, Carol (January 13, 2018). "Ralph Northam cites moral compass at inauguration: 'We have a lot of work to do'". delmarva.now. Retrieved February 1, 2018.
- Gregory S. Schneider; Fenit Nirappil (June 8, 2017). "As Virginia's primary draws closer, Democratic nomination for governor could depend on black voters". The Washington Post. Retrieved February 7, 2019.
- John Eligon (February 3, 2019). "As Calls Mount for Ralph Northam to Resign, Some Virginians Mull a Second Chance". The New York Times. Retrieved February 7, 2019.
- Patrick Wilson, Ralph Northam's ancestors owned slaves. He found out only recently, Richmond Times-Dispatch (June 2, 2017).
- Vozzella, Laura (June 1, 2017). "Full interview transcript: Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam". Washington Post. Retrieved February 1, 2018.
- Schneider, Gregory (December 16, 2017). "A Democratic winner in Virginia says it's time for bipartisanship". Washington Post. Retrieved February 1, 2018.
- Moomaw, Graham. "Gov. Ralph Northam gears up for his next race: The Monument Avenue 10K". Richmond Times-Dispatch. Retrieved April 14, 2018.
- "2007 Senate of Virginia General Election District 6". virginia.gov. Virginia State Board of Elections. Retrieved June 14, 2017.
- "2011 Senate of Virginia General Election District 6". virginia.gov. Virginia State Board of Elections. Retrieved June 14, 2017.
- "2013 Lieutenant Governor Democratic Primary". virginia.gov. Virginia State Board of Elections. Retrieved June 14, 2017.
- "2013 Lieutenant Governor General Election". virginia.gov. Virginia State Board of Elections. Retrieved June 14, 2017.
- "2017 June Democratic Primary Unofficial Results". virginia.gov. Virginia State Board of Elections. Retrieved June 14, 2017.
- "Senate of Virginia – Ralph S. Northam". Archived from the original on August 5, 2008. Retrieved October 25, 2008.
- "Virginia State Board of Elections; Election Information; Election Results". Archived from the original on June 17, 2010. Retrieved October 25, 2008.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Ralph Northam.|
|Wikiquote has quotations related to: Ralph Northam|
- Governor of Virginia official government site
- Ralph Northam at Curlie
- Ralph Northam at the Virginia Public Access Project
- Senator Ralph Northam (D-Norfolk) at Sunlight Richmond
- Appearances on C-SPAN
|Senate of Virginia|
| Member of the Virginia Senate
from the 6th district
| Lieutenant Governor of Virginia
| Governor of Virginia
|Party political offices|
| Democratic nominee for Governor of Virginia
|U.S. order of precedence (ceremonial)|
as Vice President
| Order of Precedence of the United States
Mayor of city
in which event is held
Otherwise Nancy Pelosi
Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives
as Governor of New Hampshire
| Order of Precedence of the United States
as Governor of New York