Feb 8, 2019

Virginia black lawmakers call for probe into Fairfax allegations

Virginia Lt. Governor Justin Fairfax. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Amid scandals involving three of Virginia’s top Democratic officials, the Virginia Legislative Black Caucus on Thursday called for a thorough state investigation into the "troubling" 2004 sexual assault allegation leveled against Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax.

The big picture: The lawmakers doubled down on their call for Democratic Gov. Ralph Northam to resign over a racist photo in his 1984 medical school yearbook, but stopped short of calling on Fairfax to do the same. They also did not ask Attorney General Mark Herring to resign, and said that while they recognized Herring's "candor" in admitting to wearing blackface at a college party in 1980, "we await further action on his part to reassure the citizens of the Commonwealth of his fitness for leadership."

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Inside Trump's antifa tweet

President Trump at Cape Canaveral on May 30. Photo: Paul Hennessy/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

As recently as Saturday night, senior administration officials told me that the designation of a violent cohort of far-left activists, antifa, as a terrorist organization was not being seriously discussed at the White House. But that was Saturday.

Behind the scenes: The situation changed dramatically a few hours later, after prominent conservative allies of the president, such as his friend media commentator Dan Bongino, publicly urged a tough response against people associated with antifa (short for "anti-fascist").

U.S. enters 6th day of nationwide protests over George Floyd's killing

A protest in Philadelphia on May 31. Photo: Mark Makela/Getty Images

Protests continued across the country for the sixth day in a row on Sunday, as demonstrators called for justice in response to the deaths of George Floyd, EMT Breonna Taylor, jogger Ahmaud Arbery and countless other black Americans who have suffered at the hands of racism and police brutality.

What's happening: Protestors in D.C. broke one police barricade outside the White House on Sunday evening after reportedly demonstrating for several hours. The atmosphere was still largely peaceful as of 6pm ET.

Trump privately scolded, warned by allies

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

Over the past couple of days, numerous advisers both inside and outside the White House have urged the president to tone down his violent rhetoric, which many worry could escalate racial tensions and hurt him politically.

Behind the scenes: The biggest source of internal concern was Trump's escalatory tweet, "when the looting starts, the shooting starts." Some advisers said it could damage him severely with independent voters and suburban women.