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NY Gov Spitzer resigns amid sex scandal

Democrat Spitzer quits after impeachment threats since being caught on a federal wiretap arranging to meet with a prostitute.
Reuters | By Daniel Trotta, New York
UPDATED ON MAR 13, 2008 03:07 AM IST

New York Gov Eliot Spitzer resigned on Wednesday amid a scandal over a $1,000-an-hour prostitute, cutting short a career built on pugnacious investigations of Wall Street crimes.

Lt Gov David Paterson will replace him on Monday, Spitzer said.

"I am resigning from the office of governor. At Lt Gov Paterson's request, the resignation will be effective from Monday, March 17," Spitzer announced.

Spitzer, a Democrat, had faced intense pressure to resign and impeachment threats from Republicans since the New York Times reported on Monday that he was caught on a federal wiretap arranging to meet with a prostitute.

Spitzer, 48 and married with three children, is a former New York state chief prosecutor, who rose to prominence by investigating financial crime with a vigor that earned him the nickname Sheriff of Wall Street.

He also broke up prostitution rings as attorney general.

Spitzer had apologized to his family and the public on Monday for what he called a "private matter," but gave no details of what he was apologizing for and then shuttered himself in his New York city apartment for two days.

Some 70 per cent of New York voters wanted Spitzer to quit, according to a WNBC/Marist poll conducted on Tuesday.

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