(CNN) - Alaskan Lt. Gov. Sean Parnell, who will succeed Gov. Sarah Palin after she leaves office later this month, called the governor Alaska's greatest gift to the United States on Saturday.
"I was very surprised at first," he said of Palin's decision to resign, which he said she told him Wednesday.
"But then as she began to explain why she was doing it, I began to see it was Sarah Palin, once again, moving to put Alaska's interest first," Parnell told CNN.
Palin, a Republican and John McCain's vice presidential running mate last year, said Friday she will step down as Alaska's chief executive by the end of the month and would not run for a second gubernatorial term in 2010.
"People who know me know that besides faith and family, nothing's more important to me than our beloved Alaska," Palin said at a news conference at her home in Wasilla.
Palin added in a statement that she was "determined to take the right path for Alaska even though it is not the easiest path."
"Once I decided not to run for re-election, I also felt that to embrace the conventional 'lame duck' status in this particular climate would just be another dose of 'politics as usual,' something I campaigned against and will always oppose."
Alaska's senior U.S. senator, Lisa Murkowski, was one of the people unhappy with Palin's decision.
"I am deeply disappointed that the governor has decided to abandon the state and her constituents before her term has concluded," the Republican said via satellite phone from interior Alaska, her office said.
Parnell said he accepted that others might see the governor's resignation in a different light than he does.
"She's accomplished more in these two and a half years than most governors accomplish in one or two terms," he said. "Our governor has been a great governor. She is going to be Alaska's and is Alaska's greatest gift to our country."
The soon-to-be governor said he intended to lead the state, to make sure people have jobs and that the state's finances are stable.
"Those are the things I'm going to be dealing with," he said. He will be sworn in on July 26.
Asked whether he planned on completing the term, he said "yes."
"But I am also conscious that we don't control life, so I may be dead tomorrow, and I'm not going to commit beyond that," he said, smiling.
Parnell said he planned to run for a full gubernatorial term in 2010.
Sen. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska ought to be running scared, and she obviously is, given her statement trying to tarnish Palin's resignation from office. If Gov. Palin decides to take Sen. Murkowski out and use the Senate seat from Alaska as a springboard for a 2012 presidential run, Gov. Palin will then be perfectly positioned for the national spotlight. While Gov. Palin is a polarizing figure, her poll numbers for popularity in Alaska (once you get a representative sample) are well above 50%, so she has a better than average chance of winning.
And, come to think of it, there won't be anybody on the Democratic side who can then claim that "she's not experienced enough" to be president. Unless they want to wear the hypocrite label proudly after claiming that President Obama was experienced enough from his 2 years as the Senator from Illinois.
Like the inventors of the Backstreet Boys, pet rocks and the Macarena dance, Sarah Palin mistook fame for actual talent and durability. Ridiculously underqualified, let's hope she doesn't further embarass herself. Talk show host? OK. Author? You betcha. Elected leader with actual responsibilities? NO WAY!!!
We will now be seeing her on Fox News 24/7 spewing hate and fear...
There seem to be 2 types of die-hard right wing repubs:
1. Those who always knew that Palin was a liability but will never admit it in public.
2. Those who are a dimwitted enough, or so brainwashed by religion, to really buy in to her poisonous, incoherent ramblings.
For the sake of the country, the human gene pool, and the GOP, I hope group 2 is small.
I am a true conservative, and would NEVER VOTE FOR PALIN. She is a walking Maury Povich show. Terry, Palin does not speak to true conservatives, she speaks for the uneducated, she speaks for the fear based groups, and those who only pretend to be Christians (Pharisees – for those who are up on their Bible). I find her insulting, and she demonstrates true victim mentality. Finally, she QUIT in the middle of her term. She gives new meaning to the term, "Cut and Run."
This is her idea of a bail-out plan. Bail out on those who trusted you.
The Wicked Witch of the North can't complete the rest of her term as Governor as one of our least populated states. She wants to be President??????? Wingnuts rejoice, but to normal people this confirms that Sarah Palin is mentally unbalanced.
Go Sarah go! She has put up with more stuff then any other political figure and she is as strong as ever. You will rise above one day from this media prefernce and can laugh in everyone's face. Good luck to you......we will be cheering for you!
I don't think anyone from Texas has the right to call someone from Alaska names....just saying...
why is everybody saying she'll run for President....she is not, period....and, if she really would consider it....will fall flat on her face......cannot run as a CONServative-sanford just screwed up that notion-and as a secessionist she'll get some of those hard core texan's votes......good prospects if you asked me....NOT!!!!
book title....The raping of Alaska
Why does CNN continue to use the word SLAMS every time someone talks bad about the GOP?
All these posts are exactly what I expected to be seeing after the announcement yesterday. Dem's being Dem's continue to hound her because she campaigned against their Chosen One. They have NEVER let up in all the months since she was announced. That combined with all the law suits that were wasting Government money for no reason but to try and make her look bad. Would you want to waste millions of dollars on useless lawsuits? If your a democrat, that's business as usual, since you don't care about the Trillions being wasted by the President either. Do you even care about the fate of this Country and what the President is doing to your taxes and freedoms?
She did the right thing for her state, to stop the nonsense you haters have done. You not only went after her, you went after her family, which is NOT acceptable. If anyone did this to Obama kids, they would have never heard the end of it from the press. If it was Letterman making a joke about one of Obama's kids getting knocked up, he would have been yanked off the air the next day. The liberal press made it their job to dish dirt on her any chance they could get.
The sad part, even with her leaving, you will not give up, because she has spoken her heart about how she loves this Country. Can you say that about the President and his wife who has never been proud of this Country?
I know my Grandchildren will thank this President for putting them into debt...before they are even born.
President Obama is SO a two-term president.
Adios, Caribou Barbie. You are an idiot and you stink.
I have relatives in Alaska that say this guy is a shill – a placeholder for the next republican that seems semi-qualified. And in the same breath, they told me that tons of people are switching from R to some other affiliation. They feel dirty - almost like victms of abuse.
Just repeating what a stable family has to say. Good luck Alaska.
Funny how democrats think it terrible to be elected and then serve only a partial term, yet they thought it wonderful that a community organizer ran for the senate, served about 2 years before abandoning the citizens of Illinois to run for almost 2 years as President.... can you say hypocrisy democrats or double standards as long as you do it it is okay but if republicans do it it is a dastardly deed. Your comments re her standards are nothing when compared to a lot of your own standards and respect for an elected office.
I wish no ill will towards Gov. Palin, but she just shot herself in the foot if she plans to run for president in 2012. Trying to spin this as a maverick decision to save the Alaskan people money and spare them the spectacle of defending miscellaneous accusations is not working. When the going got tough, she quit...not a sign of leadership.
No, don't say that Sarah is Alaska's greatest gift....oh this is not true. Alaska can do so much better than Sarah. Consider the beauty of Alaska and Sarah is a pale comparison to the wonders of that State.
He can say what ever he likes,
Because he knows we're not going to re-elect him either.
I currently live in California, but have lived in every time zone of the "Lower 48." I know MANY Alaskans, Republicans and Democrats, and NOT ONE OF THEM has a favorable impression of Sarah Palin.
Ironic, too, that she talked about the need to "build up" in her rambling resignation conference, when she launched her VP campaign by way of a memorable convention speech in which she completely trashed President Barack Obama.
Sarah Palin is definitely one thing: a colossal hypocrite.
Being a Governor, even of a sparsely populated state, is a commitment.....you don't just up and quit.... If she were in the military, she would be charged with destertion!
How can anyone say that this is a "smart" move?????
look, the bottom line is she has proved ALL liberals right! She is not ready to be in politics outside of the local PTA. She thrived in AK, because no one knew what she was doing to them, until she ran for VP. She is not suitable for pressure or big jobs. She abandoned her state cause her wittle feelings were hurt, shes a loser and this should shut theright up. She will NOT be running for pres in 2012. The country wont accept someone that walks out when the road is hard. I could just imagine if a liberal had done this, the right would have a feild day. She needs to go bak to being a mom and wife, she clearly does NOT have the stomach to take the heat, even though she dishes it well! She has always been in over her head
More evidence that the Church Age has come to an end !!
She did it for Alaska?
There is nothing this woman does for anyone but HERSELF. This basketball analogy during here quitting speech is so stupid and transparent that only a complete idiot will believe it.
We have not the last of his half brain.
The entire world has known for almost a year that this lady is a complete Idiot.
The last election proved the MAJORITY of Americans decided she did not have the qualities and intelligence to lead our country....so to all who are saying she "COULD" be President..... you need to get back to reality!
There is no way in a sane America she could be more than a janitor!
What a "leader"!!! Some people just can't stop making jokes out of themselves... yet they get very angry when people make jokes about them... Bizarre...