New York lt. gov. says she is 'prepared to lead' following Cuomo resignation

New York lt. gov. says she is 'prepared to lead' following Cuomo resignation
© Greg Nash

New York Lieutenant Gov. Kathy Hochul (D) said she is “prepared to lead” following the resignation of Gov. Andrew CuomoAndrew CuomoThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Uber - Biden makes his pitch as tax questions mount Hochul gets early boost as NY gubernatorial race takes shape EMILY's List announces early endorsement of Hochul MORE (D), who stepped down on Tuesday after an explosive report from the state attorney general found that he sexually harassed 11 women and violated state and federal laws.

“As someone who has served at all levels of government and is next in the line of succession, I am prepared to lead as New York State’s 57th Governor,” Hochul wrote on Twitter.

Hochul, who will assume office in 14 days, when Cuomo’s resignation becomes effective, said she agrees with the governor’s decision, adding that it was “the right thing to do and in the best interest of New Yorkers.”

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Hochul, 62, will become the first female governor of New York. She will be the 57th governor to take office and will serve the remainder of Cuomo’s term, which is set to expire in 2023.

Hochul served in the U.S. House for two years, representing New York’s 26th Congressional District from 2011 to 2013. She served on the House Armed Services and Homeland Security committees.

She lost a reelection bid in 2012 to now-former Rep. Chris CollinsChristopher (Chris) Carl CollinsBiden taps Damian Williams as US attorney for Manhattan New York lt. gov. says she is 'prepared to lead' following Cuomo resignation Outrage grows as Justice seeks to contain subpoena fallout MORE (R), who served until 2019.

Before serving in the House, Hochul was county clerk of Erie County from 2007 to 2011.

Cuomo abruptly announced his resignation Tuesday, after a week of defiance in the wake of the investigation’s report. Last week he said he would not resign from office.

“I think that given the circumstances, the best way I can help now is if I step aside and let government get back to governing. 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 in a video address on Tuesday.

Cuomo has repeatedly said he did not touch anyone inappropriately. Minutes before his resignation address, the governor’s lawyer, Rita Glavin, held a news conference for roughly 40 minutes where she offered a point-by-point rebuttal of the report.

Cuomo said Hochul is “smart and competent,” adding, “This transition must be seamless; we have a lot going on.”