Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum quickly responded to Gov. John Kitzhaber’s resignation Friday, thanking him for his service but confirming she’ll press a criminal investigation into allegations against him and his fiancee, Cylvia Hayes.
“Oregonians deserve nothing less than a full and fair investigation of all the facts, as well as the opportunity to reach a resolution that will truly allow our state to move forward,” Rosenblum said in a statement.
The governor and Hayes came under fire amid questions about whether she benefited from her relationship with the governor, her position as first lady and her role as a green-energy consultant. Questions were also raised about whether Hayes paid taxes on money she earned from the Clean Economy Development Center.
On Friday, Rosenblum spokeswoman Kristina Edmunson declined to comment further on the probe or what laws were involved.
An investigation by the Oregon Government Ethics Commission into complaints against the governor and Hayes was suspended when the criminal investigation was launched on Feb. 6.
In his resignation statement, Kitzhaber said he was confident that he has not broken any laws and said none of his actions “were dishonest or dishonorable in their intent or outcome.”
Kitzhaber says he will cooperate fully with the investigation. He acknowledged the process could take months.
“I am equally confident that once they have been concluded Oregonians will see that I have never put anything before my love for and commitment to Oregon and faithfully fulfilling the responsibilities of the public offices I have held.”