Former Virginia congressman says Northam shouldn't resign: 'Redemption is a very powerful factor'

Former Virginia congressman says Northam shouldn't resign: 'Redemption is a very powerful factor'
© Anne Wernikoff

Former Virginia Rep. Jim MoranJames (Jim) Patrick MoranStar-studded cast to perform play based on Mueller report DC theatre to host 11-hour reading of the Mueller report Bottom line MORE (D) said Sunday that Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (D) shouldn't resign despite the revelation that his medical school yearbook page included a photo with a man in blackface and another in a Ku Klux Klan robe.

Moran, one of the few public figures to defend Northam since the photo was released Friday, said he thinks "there is an issue of redemption."

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“Even if the worst case scenario is true, I think there is an issue of redemption. Redemption is a very powerful factor in what people are able to accomplish," Moran said on ABC's "This Week."

"Ralph understands the endemic racism that has been part of Virginia’s society for so long. … He understands that legacy better than many people are able to and I think we ought to give him an opportunity," Moran added.

Moran also said that he expects Northam "will have the highest motivation" to move Virginia away from its "horrible past of racism."

“I think that Ralph will have the highest motivation possible to bring us further away from this horrible past of racism and bring us toward more racial justice," he said.

Northam has faced a range of calls to resign from current and former lawmakers in Virginia and across the country. The Virginia governor on Saturday denied being in the photo after indicating Friday that he was one of the two people in the picture.

Read more From The Hill:

NAACP president calls on Northam to resign, says he should have disclosed racist photo

McAuliffe predicts Northam will resign as Virginia governor