Lt. Governor Rick Sheehy Resigns

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Governor Dave Heineman announced during a press conference Saturday morning Lieutenant Governor Rick Sheehy has resigned effective immediately.

Gov. Heineman announced Sheehy's resignation in a hastily called news conference Saturday morning.

The governor said new information he learned Friday led to a phone call with Sheehy, who resigned this morning.

Heineman refused to say whether he asked for Sheehy's resignation, just that the lieutenant governor was stepping down.

During his press conference the governor said, "I've got a knot in my stomach. I'm deeply disappointed. He's done a lot of good things for the state but that trust was broken and he's resigned."

Heineman said the resignation followed disclosures made in a public records request, but refused to say what those disclosures were.

According to a report from an Omaha newspaper the resignation comes after the newspaper investigated and raised questions about improper cell phone calls to four women, other than his wife, during the past four years.

Heineman says he was very surprised by what had happened, calling it unexpected and very serious.

He says, "Public officials are rightly held to a higher standard. We take our public trust very seriously."

Sheehy, a Republican, had been considered the front-runner in the 2014 race for governor and had been endorsed by Heineman.

Sheehy has been traveling throughout the state, making speeches and holding public events.

The governor said of the race, "I doubt he will continue his campaign for governor and no I would not support him under the circumstances."

In his resignation letter to the governor, Sheehy said, "It has been a privilege to serve you and the great people of our state."

Heineman says he will move as quickly as he can to find a replacement, but he wants to make sure he finds the right person.

He says his staff can handle the extra responsibilities in the meantime.

Whoever takes the job will serve for the two years left in Heineman's term.

If something happens to the governor before a replacement is found, Speaker Greg Adams will take over.