WASHINGTON (WIVB) – Rep. Tom Reed announced his resignation Tuesday after 12 years in Congress.

The Corning Republican from New York’s 23rd district announced in March 2021 that he would not run for another office once his term ended. That announcement came days after he was accused of sexual misconduct.

Reed’s resignation adds another layer of confusion to an election season clouded by redistricting. A New York Supreme Court judge struck down the new Congressional and Legislature maps less than two weeks ago over gerrymandering, putting the future of Reed’s district in question once again.

Now, a possible special election to fill his seat is likely to be added to the mix. That special election would be called by Governor Kathy Hochul. The New York State Public Officers Law gives her 10 days to issue that proclamation after the vacancy is created “unless otherwise provided for by authorized local law, resolution or ordinance”. The special election must happen 70-80 days after the proclamation is issued.

“We have not yet received the Congressman’s resignation but when we do, the Governor will call a special election as required by law,” a spokesperson for Hochul said Tuesday evening.

“It is time for petty political posturing to end,” Reed said on the House floor while announcing his resignation. His office released his full remarks, which are below:

After almost 12 years in Congress, today is my last day. It has been an honor to serve with you all from both parties. I love this institution as it still exemplifies what is best about our government, we are the People’s house.  While I am proud that we put people before politics, there is much more to do. I am leaving to continue that work and hope to have a greater impact on our Country.  

I believe the current focus on extremism demands us to heed the words of Abraham Lincoln uttered years ago as we face a similar threat to our existence today— “a house divided cannot stand!”  But I add— “a house United will not fail.”  It is time for petty political posturing to end. Leadership must emerge And in God I trust. His divine protection will extend again if only we acknowledge and accept His love and the divine spark that exists in each of us as citizens of our great nation. 

I want to thank my family, who without their love and support I am nothing. I also thank the people who have worked for us and helped so many.  I am grateful.

My most profound appreciation is for the people of Western New York. Thank you for giving a country lawyer, the youngest of twelve, raised by a single mother whose father passed away when he was only two, the honor of representing you at the highest level. Only in America can such a dream come true. So, I humbly bid farewell and submit my resignation as a Member of the House. I wish you all — Godspeed!

-Tom Reed

Reed is a former chair of House Problem Solvers Caucus who was elected in 2010 via a special election, filling the seat vacated by Eric Massa. Reed said 12 years ago that the person who resigned should have to pay for the election.

This is a breaking news story, check back for updates.

News 4’s Chris Horvatits contributed to this report.