At the end of an interview Thursday night, E.W. Jackson turned to Ralph Northam and offered his hand for a shake. Ralph Northam didn’t budget. E.W. pressed his hand further. Ralph refused to move, didn’t even look at E.W. let alone acknowledge him!
This blatant disrespect did not go unnoticed on Friday.
That’s cheap. You may not like what Jackson stands for… you may not even like the man. But you have the decency to shake his hand. Refusing to do so simply isn’t the Virginia Way.
One of the rudest and most disgusting things I’ve seen in politics and Virginia Virtucon has the story. Candidate Ralph Northam refused to even look at his opponent E.W. Jackson during a debate. When Jackson offered his hand to Northam, all but putting it in his lap, Northam ignored him. Virginia Virtucon has the film. Democrats have no shame.
Watch this video shot last night in Tidewater with E.W. Jackson and Ralph Northam. There are several priceless moments. It is always nice to see a Republican actually stand up and call out a Democrat so aggressively in the media. So much so Northam refuses to shake his hand right at the end.
But Friday wasn’t the end of it. As the story simmered over the weekend, people got more and more angry.
It was insulting, but, on the other hand, I thought it was consistent with the way he behaves. Because, this spot he’s been running, saying that I believe that a child born with birth defects is born that way because of their parents’ sin is just a damnable, palpable, despicable lie. I don’t believe that. I never said anything like that. And it’s that kind of dishonesty that, to me, says this is not the kind of person that needs to be holding state-wide office. Not shaking my hand really just confirmed that.
From Dr. Alveda King, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr’s neice:
I was saddened to learn today that Lt. Gov. candidate Ralph Northam refused to shake the hands of his opponent E.W. Jackson at the end of a television debate. I am deeply burdened by the loss of civility in politics today.
As one who has been elected to office as a Democratic Georgia State Representative, served as a Republican presidential appointee and who has often voted as an Independent, I have often said that we would all be better off without the political squabbles that tend to divide us. Refusing to shake hands with your opponent in front of a television audience takes the loss of civility to a new low. I would hope that his refusal to shake hands had nothing to do with the color of his opponent’s skin.
In a troubled economy, people are looking for leaders who can bring everyone together to solve the problems that confront us all. It is my hope that in these last hours of the race, Ralph Northam will recognize his inappropriate behavior and offer an apology to E.W. Jackson and to all those he hopes to represent.
From Ken Blackwell of the American Civil Rights Union:
The Founders of the American republic understood that democracy only works when both sides can at least be civil to their opponents. Virginia voters need to decide if that disqualifies Ralph Northam from being lieutenant governor of the Old Dominion.
People sometimes accuse politicians of being two-faced or insincere when they refer to bitter opponents as “my good friend” and pose for smiling photos with them. It’s not deception; it’s basic courtesy and respect, without which democracy cannot function.
In many countries, disagreements over policy end in brutal government oppression or even bloodshed. Politics can be so passionate with people clashing over views that an essential element of building goodwill and finding common ground is by working overtime to be courteous and complimentary. Unfortunately, Mr. Northam’s actions fall short of that important standard.
And now it’s on Drudge Report:
Ralph Northam showed a lot about his character on Thursday night. And voters are seeing it. Hopefully they’ll take that to the polls tomorrow…