- The Washington Times - Thursday, July 25, 2019

Puerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Rossello announced Wednesday night that he would resign, after two weeks of massive demonstrations surrounding lewd audiotapes.

Mr. Rossello announced the move in a Facebook message in which he said the resignation would be effective a week from Friday, on Aug. 2.

In his message, he conceded that he could not credibly continue as governor.

Mr. Rossello said about the protests that “the demands have been overwhelming and I’ve received them with highest degree of humility.”

He said Justice Minister Wanda Vazquez would take over, according to the terms of the U.S. island territory’s constitution.

According to reporters in San Juan, demonstrators outside the governor’s mansion erupted into cheers and singing after his announcement just before midnight.

Earlier Wednesday, House Speaker Carlos Mendez Nunez said his chamber would begin impeachment proceedings Thursday and told reporters that there would be enough votes to remove the governor.

The demonstrations that had gripped the island and spread to Puerto Ricans on the mainland began when text messages between Mr. Rossello and a circle of about a dozen aides were leaked. The group, all men, made profanity-heavy sexist and sexual remarked about female politicians and gays and joked about Hurricane Maria victims. There also were implications of corruption.

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