The woman who was expected to replace Puerto Rico’s Gov. Ricardo Rosselló announced Sunday that she doesn’t want the job. Justice Secretary Wanda Vázquez said in a Twitter post that she hopes Rosselló will appoint a secretary of state before he resigns on August 2 as planned.
According to the U.S. territory’s constitution, former Secretary of State Luis Rivera Marín would have been next in line as governor; however he is one of more than a dozen officials who have resigned in recent weeks since an obscenity-laced chat was leaked, in which Rosselló and close advisers insulted people including women and victims of Hurricane Maria. Marín’s resignation had left Vázquez as next in line to be governor; however she said she has already told Rosselló about her wishes not to take the job.
On Wednesday, Rosselló announced that he would step down, following nearly two weeks of protests over the chat, corruption charges against several former government officials and a 13-year recession. Rosselló became the first governor to resign in the modern history of Puerto Rico, a U.S. territory of 3.2 million American citizens. He is more than halfway through his four-year term.