Spitzer Sex Scandal: Jim Tedisco, NY GOP Assembly Leader Calls on Governor to Resign

This is a rush transcript from "Hannity & Colmes," March 10, 2008. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

ALAN COLMES, CO-HOST: This is a Fox News alert. The country was shocked today by the revelation that New York Governor Eliot Spitzer has been involved in a prostitution ring, and according to reports, has even been caught on federal wiretaps. No word tonight on whether Spitzer will resign, but this afternoon he spoke briefly to the people of New York.


NEW YORK GOV. ELIOT SPITZER (D): I've acted in a way that violates my obligation to my family and that violates my or any sense of right and wrong. I apologize first, and most importantly, to my family. I apologize to the public, whom I promised better.


COLMES: Joining us now in a "Hannity & Colmes" exclusive is New York State Assembly Republican Leader Jim Tedisco. Sir, thank you for coming on our program tonight. Are you at all shocked by this? What was your reaction when you first heard about it?

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JIM TEDISCO, NY GOP ASSEMBLY LEADER: Well, just a tremendous body blow. I think if I had to describe it, it probably broke the heart of every New Yorker in New York state. Unbelievable, we're saddened. We're disappointed. We're shocked. But we're also angered. I mean, this is a governor who had unbelievable tremendous potential, bright, intelligent, articulate. Many individuals thought he was on his way to the White House from the New York state executive position.

The hallmark of his leadership here was ethics, and he has really breached that political situation in terms of ethics by involving himself in this terrible situation. Our hearts and prayers certainly go out to his wife, his children, and his family. But we have the New York state government to think about, and we have to go forward now, and so we're calling for the governor, because we believe he's been compromised now, to really decide to leave that position, and to resign and allow us to go forward with our government.

COLMES: There was some word today that he was going to resign. Then there was word he would resign tonight. Do you have any update on that? What is the talk in Albany? And how much pressure is there on him even from his own party to resign?

TEDISCO: Well, I think he's lost the support of the people of New York state, from the legislature. i got a call a couple hours ago from Lieutenant Governor Patterson who constitutionally would move into that position. I won't tell you the extent of the conversation, but the discussion was about the fact that if there was a resignation by Eliot Spitzer and he became the governor, would my conference, my minority Republican conference, give him the benefit of the doubt, work with him, work towards a budget, work towards a better quality of life.

And I said absolutely, without question. We'd try to make him the greatest governor in the history of New York state, and we'd be willing to work with him as long as he'd move forward, in terms of holding the line on spending and taxes, and helping us get out of this deficit situation, which is in the area of five billion dollars. But it's certainly a tragedy for the governor, for his leadership, for the state of New York.

But one man does not make a democracy. We have to go forward as elected officials, fill that gap. And we're asking the governor, because he has been compromised — we don't know if there was a criminal element involved here, the potential for bribery, exactly what he had done with this entire situation. But we know this is a really dysfunctional situation for the governor, a really bad decision, as bright and intelligent as he is, we can't have people making decisions like this.

SEAN HANNITY, CO-HOST: Mr. Tedisco, Sean Hannity, thank you for being with us here today. Do you think there's a situation — There are all these reports that he might resign. Do you think this may be a situation where he's circling the wagons in hoping of salvaging his governorship?

TEDISCO: Well, I'm not sure if it's that or he's having some discussions with the FBI or the law enforcement agencies about what the best process would be for him to get the best situation out of this illegal activity, and we believe it is an illegal activity he has been involved with — we're going to give him 24 to 48 hours to do the right thing, and the right thing is to resign because he has been compromised, if that's not the case...

HANNITY: And if he doesn't do did right thing?

TEDISCO: We're going to have to ask the speaker to start impeachment proceedings. The impeachment proceedings for the constitution of the state of New York have to start with the speaker in the Assembly, and we'll give him 48 hours. If he doesn't resign, we'll request that.

HANNITY: All right, Mr. Tedisco, thank you very much.

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