In analyzing the allegation that Virginia’s Lieutenant Governor, Justin Fairfax, committed sexual assault in 2004, I’ve argued that, in the absence of corroborating evidence, Fairfax’s denial should be credited, or at least should keep him in office. If a second credible accuser came forward, I added, the matter would have to be viewed differently.
Now, a second accuser has emerged. The Daily Beast reports that Meredith Watson claims she was raped by Fairfax in 2000, when they were both students at Duke University. She characterizes the alleged attack as “premeditated and aggressive.” According to Watson, the two were friends, but had not dated.
Fairfax denies Watson’s rape allegation.
Watson’s allegation is, if anything, more substantial than that of his initial accuser, Vanessa Tyson. According to her lawyers, Watson told friends about the alleged attack at the time it occurred. Her lawyers say they have emails and Facebook postings that back this up. In addition, a classmate, Kaneedreck Adams, reportedly has told the Washington Post that Watson came to him in tears and said Fairfax had raped her.
Apart from Watson’s statement, there’s additional corroboration, of sorts, of Tyson’s assault claim against Fairfax. A former boyfriend of Tyson’s says, in essence, that she would not consensually have performed the act Fairfax admits she performed on him — oral sex. This act was off-limits for Tyson, the boyfriend says, because of sexual abuse she suffered as a child.
At this point, I think we should believe the women, as the saying goes. Even Democrats now might have to.