“I am announcing today that I will resign as Governor of the State of Oregon,” he wrote in a statement released just after noon Friday . . .
In just four months, a public corruption scandal involving Kitzhaber and his fiancee, Cylvia Hayes, has hobbled one of Oregon’s most durable politicians. Kitzhaber, a public official for 37 years, was sworn in for a historic fourth term as governor just a month ago. Facing not only a state criminal investigation and an ethics review, Kitzhaber watched his support from fellow veteran lawmakers crumble this week.
The governor’s resignation does not end either the criminal investigation or ethics review. (Read more about Governor John Kitzhaber announcing his resignation HERE)
Oregon Governor Agrees to Resign but Says He “Broke No Laws”
By Jonathan J. Cooper. Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber resigned Friday, giving in to mounting pressure to abandon his office amid suspicions that his fiancee used her relationship with him to land contracts for her green-energy consulting business.
In a lengthy statement, the state’s longest-serving chief executive insisted he broke no laws. He said the resignation would be effective Wednesday.
“Nonetheless, I understand that I have become a liability to the very institutions and policies to which I have dedicated my career and, indeed, my entire adult life,” he said.
The decision capped a wild week in which Kitzhaber seemed poised to step down, then changed his mind, but ultimately bowed to calls from legislative leaders that he quit the state’s top elected position.
The announcement is a stunning fall from grace for a politician who left the governor’s office in 2003 and then mounted a comeback in 2010 and won back his old job. (Read more from this story HERE)
Democratic Leaders Abandon Oregon Governor
By Hannah Hoffman. Kitzhaber is under criminal investigation by Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum’s office for the role his fiancee, Cylvia Hayes, has held in his office and whether she used that role to obtain private consulting work.
He appears to be the first Oregon governor to face an AG investigation. He is also under review by the Oregon Government Ethics Commission, although it is on hold until Rosenblum completes her work.
Calls for his resignation have mounted as new allegations against him and Hayes have come to light.
Democratic leaders officially asked Kitzhaber to step down on Thursday. They originally thought he planned to do it Wednesday, but he apparently changed his mind that afternoon. (Read more from this story HERE)