Monday, December 1, 2008
Today, I have accepted President-elect Barack Obama’s offer to join his administration as the Secretary of the United States Department of Homeland Security. I am humbled by the invitation, and proud to accept it, but it was by no means an easy decision.
Over the past six years, together, we have accomplished a great deal in Arizona. We moved our state in a new direction, strengthening our schools with voluntary full-day kindergarten, higher teacher pay and higher standards for our students. We expanded access to children’s health insurance and saved Arizonans millions of dollars with one of the largest free prescription drug discount programs in the country. And we’re rebuilding Arizona’s economy with a focus on high-wage, high-tech jobs of the future.
Yet, I believe that when called upon to serve in a new way – particularly at such a critical time in the history of our country – it is my duty as a citizen to step forward and say, “Yes.”
Arizona also faces a time of challenge, and I intend to carry forward with my most important responsibilities as the leader of this state. In just a few weeks, I will deliver my State of the State address, and shortly thereafter, I will present to the Arizona Legislature a balanced budget proposal for Fiscal Year 2010.
In the weeks that follow, upon my confirmation as Secretary by the U.S. Senate, I will tender my resignation as Governor of Arizona. Secretary of State Jan Brewer will then take over. In the meantime, specific members of my staff will be designated to oversee the Arizona transition, to ensure that power and responsibility are transferred seamlessly.
So, while our work here at the Governor’s office is not over, I want to take this opportunity to say, “thank you.” You entrusted me to run this state to the best of my ability, and I have tried with all my being to do so. I will continue to work toward what is best for Arizona and Arizonans, but from a different place and with a different charge.
In my first inaugural speech, I said, “Our strength lies in our diversity and it lies in our heritage. And we must draw on both of these gifts in the days ahead.” Those words are still true and still useful today. We will face change together, and continue to stand together as “One Arizona.”
Yours very truly,
Tedski at R-Cubed has a couple of takes on today's developments here and here; legislator-elect Daniel Patterson has his take here.
The Republican blogosphere is, in a word, *giddy* about today's announcement - Sonoran Alliance here, Mesa Issues here.