A political surprise out of New York state on Tuesday: Andrew Cuomo called a news conference and announced that he's resigning as governor amid his sexual harassment scandal. "Given the circumstances, the best way I can help now is if I step aside and let government get back to governing," he said, per ABC News. His resignation takes effect in two weeks, notes the AP, and Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul will then become New York's first female governor. Cuomo, facing impeachment in the state Legislature, spent the first part of his news conference defending himself, though acknowledging that he sometimes went too far. "I have been too familiar with people," he said. "In my mind, I've never crossed the line with anyone, but I didn't realize the extent to which the line has been redrawn."
He apologized to the 11 women who came forward to accuse him in a damning new report by the state attorney general, acknowledging that his actions "truly offended" them. Cuomo added that he was a "fighter," per CNN, "and my instinct is to fight through this controversy because I truly believe it is politically motivated, I believe it is unfair and it is untruthful, and I believe it demonizes behavior that is unsustainable for society." However, the governor said he didn't want to be "unhelpful" to his state. Cuomo still faces the possibility of criminal charges in at least one of the cases of alleged harassment. Adding to the surprise of Cuomo's announcement: Just before he spoke, his attorney Rita Glavin condemned the state attorney general's report as politically biased and filled with errors. (Read more Andrew Cuomo stories.)