Ending years of speculation, Anderson Cooper announced this morning that, yes, he is gay. Read on for his official comment and why he decided now was the right time to publicly come out of the closet.

Cooper was asked by Daily Beast columnist Andrew Sullivan to respond to last week’s Entertainment Weekly, which had a cover story about celebrities who are “out” in Hollywood. The CNN anchor and TV talk show host took the chance to finally speak publicly about his sexuality.

The fact is, I’m gay, always have been, always will be, and I couldn’t be any more happy, comfortable with myself, and proud.

I have always been very open and honest about this part of my life with my friends, my family, and my colleagues. In a perfect world, I don’t think it’s anyone else’s business, but I do think there is value in standing up and being counted. I’m not an activist, but I am a human being and I don’t give that up by being a journalist.

Of his decision not to address this sooner, Cooper said that he preferred to “stick to [his] job of telling other people’s stories, and not [his] own.” He did reveal he is in a relationship but would not reveal the identity of his partner.

You can read Cooper’s entire e-mail to The Daily Beast addressing the matter, here.

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