Sarah Palin: The guard may change but Alaska will always lead the way

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Alaska will lead with energy; we will prove you can be both pro-development and pro-environment, because no one loves their clean air and their land and their wildlife and their water more than an Alaskan. We will protect it.

Yes, America must look north to the future for security, for energy independence, for our strategic location on the globe. Alaska is the gate-keeper of the continent.

So, we are here today at a changing of the guard. Now, people who know me, and they know how much I love this state, some still are choosing not to hear why I made the decision to chart a new course to advance the state. And it should be so obvious to you [indicating heckler]. It is because I love Alaska this much, sir [at heckler], that I feel it is my duty to avoid the unproductive, typical, politics-as-usual, lame-duck session in one's last year in office. How does that benefit you? No, with this decision now, I will be able to fight even harder for you, for what is right, for truth. And I've never felt like you need a title to do that.

So, as we all move forward together, let's vow to keep championing Alaska, to advocate responsible development, and smaller government, and freedom, and when I took the oath to serve you, I promised ... remember I promised to steadfastly and doggedly, guard the interests of this great state like that grizzly guards her cubs, as a mother naturally guards her own. And I will keep that vow wherever the road may lead. Todd and I, and Track, Bristol, Tripp, Willow, Piper, Trig ... I think I got 'em all. We will forever be so grateful for the honour of our lifetime to have served you. Our whole big, diverse, full and fun family, we all thank you and I am very, very blessed to have had their support all along, for Todd's support. I am thankful, too. I have been blessed to have been raised in this last frontier. Thank you for our home, Mom and Dad, because in Alaska it is not an easy living, but it is a good living, and here it is impossible to lose your way. Wherever the road may lead you, we have that steadying great north star to guide us home.

So let's all enjoy the ride, and I thank you Alaska, and God bless Alaska and God bless America.

This is an edited excerpt of the Governor of Alaska's resignation speech, delivered on Sunday afternoon in the city of Fairbanks

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