As Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens' political career closed Tuesday, a cloud that has hung over Jefferson City since January seemed to lift.
But the occasion was somber for Missouri lawmakers ready to get the state back on track.
“I endorsed Greitens early," said Rep. Kevin Engler, R-Farmington. "I don’t take any joy in this at all, but we have to move on. Hopefully, this will let us do that.”
Engler called the Greitens saga a "tragedy."
"He had such promise," Engler said. "And it's bad for his family, and it's not been a good thing for the state."
Rep. Mark Ellebracht, D-Liberty, echoed similar sorrow about the effect Greitens had on the state.
"There are a lot of folks who are probably pretty happy to hear he's resigning," Ellebracht said. "But honestly, it's pretty sad. It's sad that he put his family and the state through this mess, it's sad that he never grew to appreciate the solemn responsibility he had to our constitution and constituents, and it's sad that now his sordid and evidently deeply unethical time in office is a part of our state's legacy."
Missouri state Rep. Judy Morgan, D-Kansas City, said she "didn't think he was very repentant" in his resignation announcement.
“He kind of continued the whole thing of blaming everyone else and not taking responsibility for what he had done," Morgan said.
Morgan noted Greitens left the room after announcing his resignation without answering questions from reporters.
“It would have been nice if he would have been more conciliatory and more apologetic, but I don’t know that I expected that from him," Morgan said.
Greitens came into office vowing to clean up corruption in Jefferson City, but "corruption in state government became worse than ever under Eric Greitens," said State Auditor Nicole Galloway.
"That corruption must be cleaned up, and our state's reputation must be restored," Galloway said. "This can only happen if leaders put the needs of Missourians ahead of themselves."
U.S. Rep. Sam Graves, a Republican representing Missouri's 6th District, said he supported Greitens' decision.
"Governor Greitens fought hard against the allegations made against him and, at the end of the day, he decided to put family and Missouri first," Graves said.
U.S. Sens. Roy Blunt, a Republican, and Claire McCaskill, a Democrat, said they looked forward to Lt. Gov. Mike Parson's leadership.
"The governor made the best decision for his family and the state," Blunt said in a statement.
Across the state line, Kansas Gov. Jeff Colyer, a Republican, said he looked forward to working with Parson and sent his "best wishes to Governor Greitens and his family as they navigate this difficult time."
Kansas City Mayor Sly James said it was "sad and unfortunate that our state has had to witness politics at its worst."
"Missourians need their leaders to find sustainable solutions to critical issues like education, health care, infrastructure and gun violence," James said. "I hope that a change in leadership will help our legislature refocus its priorities on the very serious needs across our state."