New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo resigned from his position on Tuesday, one week after state Attorney General Letitia James released a report that found he sexually harassed 11 women, including staffers and others who did not work for his administration.
“It was an honor to lead,” Cuomo said in his closing remarks shortly following the announcement, noting that the transition will be effective “in 14 days.” New York Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul will be his replacement and will serve as the state’s first female governor.
“The best way I can help now is if I step aside and let government get back to government, and therefore, that’s what I’ll do because I work for you, and doing the right thing is doing the right thing for you,” Cuomo said when announcing his resignation. “Because, as we say, it’s not about me — it’s about we. Kathy Hochul, my lieutenant governor, is smart and competent. This transition must be seamless.”
Cuomo’s remarks came just after his outside legal counsel Rita Glavin argued that the release of Attorney General Letitia James’s report conducted by independent investigators gave the governor “no opportunity to respond, and a press cycle ensued. And journalists were saying things that he had groped and that he had fondled 11 women, and that wasn’t true when that wasn’t in the report.”
Prior to Tuesday, the New York governor appeared to be adamant about defending his name against the findings in the report but ultimately decided to give up his office.