There'd been rumors throughout the day about David Petraeus stepping down as the director of Central Intelligence Agency after a year on the job, but the details of the report, first aired by msnbc's Andrea Mitchell, appear to have caught everyone off guard.
"After being married for over 37 years, I showed extremely poor judgment by engaging in an extramarital affair," the outgoing CIA director said in a written statement. "Such behavior is unacceptable, both as a husband and as the leader of an organization such as ours." He added that he met yesterday with President Obama, who today accepted Petraeus' resignation.
Mike Morrell, the deputy CIA director and a longtime CIA officer, has been named acting director, and may soon be elevated to the job permanently.
Petraeus is perhaps best known for his military career, in which he was a four-star Army general. He served as the commander of U.S. forces in Afghanistan, he led U.S. Central Command, and was the U.S. commanding general of international forces in Iraq.
In case it's not obvious, some positions in government make it far more difficult to get away with such personal missteps. When you're the director of the CIA, and extramarital affairs represent national security risks, it's a career killer.