Virginia Republicans offer $1,000 for blackface photo of Mark Herring | News Coverage from USA

Virginia Republicans offer $1,000 for blackface photo of Mark Herring

The Republican Party of Virginia is offering a cash reward if someone hands over a photo showing the state’s attorney general in blackface. 

The offer includes a photo of Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring with the word “wanted.” Herring admitted last month to wearing blackface when he was in college in 1980. His admission came amid a whirlwind of scandals and controversy that ensnared the state’s top leadership, including its governor who also admitted to wearing blackface. 

“The Republican Party of Virginia is offering a $1,000 reward for either a verified copy of a picture of Mark Herring in blackface or verifiable contact information for Herring’s Sigma Chi fraternity brothers from Herring’s time as an undergraduate that ultimately leads to a verified picture of Mark Herring in blackface,” the Republican party of Virginia wrote on its official website. 

The Republican Party of Virginia notes that the $1,000 reward would go to the “first person to provide verifiable photograph” of Herring in blackface. 

Herring admitted he wore blackface when he was 19 at the suggestion of friends who wanted to attend a party dressed as rap musicians. 

“It sounds ridiculous even now writing it. But because of our ignorance and glib attitudes – and because we did not have an appreciation for the experiences and perspectives of others – we dressed up and put on wigs and brown makeup,” Herring said. “This was a one-time occurrence, and I accept full responsibility for my conduct.”

Herring’s admission came after Gov. Ralph Northam said he wore blackface in 1984 for a Michael Jackson costume and Lt Gov. Justin Fairfax was accused of sexual assault, which he has denied.  

None has resigned since the scandals broke. 

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Herring had originally called for Northam to resign in the wake of the scandal and Northam’s contradicting statements about photos on his yearbook page, which showed one person wearing a Ku Klux Klan robe and another in blackface. 

He told local radio station WAMU that his situation was different from Northam’s, even though both politicians wore blackface.

He said Northam’s back and forth statements “led to an erosion of the public trust, including the trust of those whose support he would need in order to govern effectively.” 

“And so for me it was about that public trust and the support of those he would need. And that’s when I knew he couldn’t lead going forward,” Herring said. “That’s the standard that I would hold myself to.


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