Gov. Eliot Spitzer resigned as New York Governor Over Prostitution Sex Scandal

New York Governor Eliot Spitzer resigned from office Wednesday, succumbing to threats of impeachment and mounting media pressure over his involvement with a high-end prostitution ring. Gov. Eliot Spitzer, the nationally known do-gooder who suffered a jaw-dropping fall from grace this week after being accused of frequenting a high-price call girl ring.

Kristen’s profile off the now defunct Emperor’s Club website, She is the last Prostitute visited by Gov. Eliot Spitzer.

Speaking to reporters in New York, where he had been holed up with his advisors since the career-ending sex scandal broke Monday, Spitzer said he had failed to live up to the standards expected of public officials.

"Over the course of my public life I have insisted, I believe correctly, that people, regardless of their position or power, take responsibility for their conduct," Spitzer told reporters, flanked by his wife.

"I can and will ask no less of myself. For his reason I am resigning from the office of governor," the ashen-faced governor said, adding: "I cannot allow my private failings to disrupt the people's work."

"The remorse I feel will always be with me," he added.

Spitzer, 48, the one-time "Sheriff of Wall Street," would on Monday formally hand over to Lieutenant Governor David Paterson, who would become the state's first black governor and the first blind governor in US history.

Lt. Gov. David Paterson, 53, will take his place effective Monday, becoming New York's first African-American governor and the nation's first who is legally blind. Paterson released his own statement following the announcement.

"Like all New Yorkers, I am saddened by what we have learned over the past several days," he said. "On a personal level, Governor Spitzer and Silda have been close and steadfast friends. As an elected official the governor has worked hard for the people of New York. My heart goes out to him and to his family at this difficult and painful time. I ask all New Yorkers to join Michelle and me in prayer for them."

Paterson, considered more liberal and accommodating than his pugnacious former boss, immediately sought to draw a line under Spitzer's term, which has been marked by deadlock since he took over last year.

"It is now time for (state capital) Albany to get back to work as the people of this state expect from us," the governor-in-waiting said.

Wednesday's resignation marked a dramatic fall from grace for Spitzer, a Hillary Clinton ally once considered presidential material and known as "Mr Clean" for taking down organized crime and tackling Wall Street corruption.

Republicans in the state assembly had on Tuesday given Spitzer 48 hours to quit or face impeachment, while New York newspapers had also called for the governor to do the right thing and stand down.

Spitzer could still face federal criminal charges and New York prosecutors pointedly denied they had made a deal with Spitzer, amid earlier reports he had agreed to quit in return for avoiding charges such as money laundering.

His resignation came as further details emerged of his use of prostitutes, with the New York Post saying he had spent up to 80,000 dollars on call girls going back 10 years to his time as New York state attorney general.

Spitzer, a father of three, initially indicated on Monday that he did not intend to step down, labeling the scandal "a private matter."

Appearing alongside his wife of more than 20 years, Spitzer apologized for his behavior but did not make any specific admissions.

But by Tuesday, talks were already reportedly going ahead in the state capital Albany to ensure a smooth transition to Paterson.

Spitzer was allegedly caught on a federal wiretap last month arranging to meet a prostitute at a hotel in Washington, where he was due to address the US congress the following day.

But reports suggested investigators first started probing Spitzer's affairs when his bank reported him to tax authorities over suspicious transfers from which he had asked the bank to remove his name.

He was believed to have used an exclusive ring known as the "Emperor's Club VIP," which was broken up by New York authorities last week.

According to reports, Spitzer was the "Client 9" named in a criminal complaint filed by prosecutors last week.

The complaint suggested Client 9 had used the prostitution ring's services before and detailed how he arranged to have a prostitute named Kristen brought from New York to Washington.

According to the complaint, the client paid her 4,300 dollars and left after around two hours.

Spitzer still faces the threat of criminal charges. "There is no agreement between this office and Governor Eliot Spitzer relating to his resignation or any other matter," Michael Garcia, the U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York, said Wednesday.

White House press secretary Dana Perino responded to Spitzer's resignation by repeating that President Bush views it as a "sad situation."

"He has Gov. Spitzer and Gov. Spitzer's family in his thoughts and prayers," Perino said. "And he looks forward to working with Lt. Gov. Paterson when he takes over the post on Monday."

Asked if Bush planned to call Spitzer, Perino said: "I certainly think that's possible."

Spitzer's resignation came after only 14 months in office and less than 48 hours since news broke that a federal complaint detailing the actions of a "Client 9" referred to the former prosecutor once known as "Mr. Clean."