Rumsfeld Resigns

Donald H. Rumsfeld is stepping down as defense secretary and former CIA Director Robert Gates will be nominated to take his place.

Rumsfeld, President Bush's sole defense secretary in six years of leadership, is the first administration casualty after a midterm congressional election that sent at least 28 House Republicans packing and left the future of the Senate in limbo.

President Bush called Rumsfeld a trusted friend and patriot who had served his country well. Read more.

What do you think of the Defense Secretary's resignation, and how do you think it will change the Bush administration's approach to the war in Iraq?

E-mail us at and join the discussion!

Here's what FOX Fans are saying:

"I'm sorry to see Secretary Rumsfeld being made a scapegoat. I thought President Bush had more integrity than that. Clearly, the war on terror is lost. Islamic fascists will take over, because we as a country no longer have the guts or the staying power to finish the job. I wonder what our world will look like in 10 years?" — Wayne

"Great decision! We need new ideas to get us heading in a more positive direction with Iraq. Our troops deserve it, and I hope that this decision by honorable Rumsfeld will bring some unity to our great country." — Jimmy

"It should have been done at the end of the first term, or a least a couple of months ago when it could have made a difference in the election outcome. Instead, the Republican Party suffered a terrible defeat, and it all falls on the president." — Rod (Houghton, MI)

"I think it's probably good Rumsfeld resigned, but I do think he did a hell of a job. I think change can be a good thing, and we do need to concentrate on getting out of Iraq and guarding our borders. That's where the real terror will hit us dead-on!" — Saundra (Oregon)

"Secretary Rumsfeld has served this nation well, and I wish the very best for he and his family. I just hope the new guy coming in cares as much for the troops and sees the threat the terrorists are to this country. I agree that if the plan was for Rumsfeld to resign, it should have been prior to the election, but then President Bush would have been criticized for 'playing politics.'" — Rhonda (Texas)

"Having served in Fallujah, I feel this nation has not learned anything from American history. The American people are only out for peace that is not feasible, when you are fighting terrorists. Many Americans speak of peace as if it is easily grasped, however, many Americans are not willing to pay the price for peace. My question is, why is it so wrong to help other people gain freedom from these terrorists? I am truly disturbed to see how selfish America is." — H.A.D. (Rexburg, ID)

"I don't blame Rumsfeld for leaving. A person can be bombarded with Democratic ignorance, for just so long. Everyone has a breaking point." — Blanch (Hickory Ridge, AK)

"A day late and a dollar short. The president made a grave mistake when he put Rumsfeld in front of the Republican Party. As a coach, you never put one player above the team. President Bush should have listened to the American people. He didn't, and now his party will suffer. He has no choice but to change the course of the Iraq war." — Jason (Holland, MI)

"Rumsfeld had been pitching for many innings, and it's time to put in a fresh pitcher." — A.P.

"I think he did a good job in difficult times, however, since there is so much controversy, it is a good idea to have a new person take over." — Cindy (Cincinnati, OH)

"I think that Rumsfeld's resignation is long overdue. He should have resigned a year ago." — Shawn (Trenton, NJ)

"My delight at Rumsfeld's resignation was quickly dashed with the announcement of the nomination of Mr. Gates as his predecessor. Considering the former CIA Director was directly named, aware of, and involved in the Iran Contra scandals, yet never formerly charged, I wonder if we are looking at a positive change. I think not. I believe we may be looking at just another financial opportunity for the friends of the Bush family." — Catherine

"Rumsfeld proved himself to be an excellent Washington bureaucrat earlier in his career. As Secretary of Defense, directing a 'boots-on-the-ground' war, Mr. Rumsfeld allowed his bureaucratic regimen to take precedence over his primary obligation of listening to his top military advisors. How can you win the peace before you have won the war? Mr. Rumsfeld should have been replaced after his decision to withdraw from Sadr City when Moqtada al Sadr and his insurgents were cornered and defeated. This failure emboldened all insurgents to strike hard and often with little fear of the consequences of their actions." — Theodore

"I always felt that Rumsfeld was trying to run the military like a business — efficiently, as if to make money. For those who think that trimming down was the right thing to do, consider this: if a football team fields 11 players, and the team has only 12, what kind of a season do you think they will have? The U.S. military needs replacements to fill the gaps made by injury, deaths, attrition, etc. Only a fool goes into battle with just enough people and equipment to get the job done, assuming no casualties or loss of equipment. We need leaders who will bring forth the idea that we are there to win, nothing less than total unquestionable victory, and not worry about world opinion." — S.K. (Enterprise, AL)

"I'm very sorry to see Rummy go! At least we know he supported our troops and supported the new, free country of Iraq. Not so the Dems." — Katie

"I think this is an attempt at the Bush regime to prepare for the oncoming investigation into their crimes against humanity. Rumsfeld should be indicted." — Mark

"What do you do with a defense secretary who quarterbacks a losing war strategy and almost single-handedly costs the Republicans both houses of Congress? Keep him on for another two years? I don't think so." — Michael (Bridgewater, CT)

"At last, this incompetent and arrogant defense secretary has resigned. As a European, I was shocked in 2003 when he said that Germany and France are considered the old Europe. I really hope that this is the first step for a full take over of the Democrats in the U.S. I really hope that the good Clinton-era is coming back again." — Marc (France)

"In case anyone is missing it here, history is being repeated. During the Vietnam conflict, all of the liberal hacks came out of the woodwork against the president, the defense secretary, and the military. The only difference now is that the military has for the most part been spared of the more vile accusations with a few exceptions." — Allen

"I personally would like to thank Rumsfeld for his leadership these past five years. He understood the war on terror back in 1984 when he first spoke on it, although the press had no perception of it until 9/11, and they have forgotten the lesson again. I am sorry to see this patriot go." — Laura

"He can quit in the middle of a war with no repercussions, but the men and women who are actually out there getting shot at can't. If they did, they'd be sent to a military prison. I hope he never has a good night of sleep for the rest of his life." — Steve

"Our loss of Mr. Rumsfeld is an example of the old adage, 'No good dead will go unpunished.' Mr. Rumsfeld is the finest and most productive Secretary of Defense ever. This nation has to stop maltreating our servants, or no one will be willing to serve. Mr. Rumsfeld worked tirelessly accomplishing great things for our nation and is worthy of our highest praise and gratitude." — Lee (North Palm Beach, FL)

"I think it is a step in the right direction. The Iraqi government is playing us. We are terrorizing ourselves economically, and letting our brave soldiers die for a group of people who will never believe in our ways of freedom. Let's at least step back and look at the big picture instead of just staying the course of a bad plan. Rumsfeld bullied the military, and I think that was evident by the number of retired generals who came forward to speak out against him." — Cameron

"Sadly, all good things must come to an end less we forget to appreciate them. Rummy is a fine example to which all Americans should aspire. I wish him and his family only the very best life has to offer. I just wish he had done this sooner, so we could have saved both the House and the Senate this time around." — Lisa

"I'm thankful for Rumsfeld's service to this nation. I'm also thankful that most of the current American voters weren't around during World War II. If they had been, we'd all have been saluting a Nazi flag within a year. What has happened to fortitude in this country? We, as a nation, have forgotten the lessons of the past." — Richard (Houston, TX)

"Wow, it is about time for him to resign. It should have happened a while ago. Rumsfeld is not the only problem with this presidency, though. Cheney needs to go as well, and hopefully he won't run in 2008 either. This has been a long time coming for the Democratic Party, and it is time for a change in D.C." — Ryan (Colorado Springs, CO)

"My big question is, why did he wait until the administration lost control of the House and Senate? I have nothing against Mr. Rumsfeld, however, he, and the president knew he was causing trouble for the party. Seems to me that there has not been any micro-management in the White House." — Mark

"It is too little too late for this Republican. If he had resigned earlier this year, the Republicans might have saved some of the seats they lost in both the House and the Senate. The whole election was a referendum on the Iraq war and now everyone will be paying for it for several years to come. With a change earlier in the year, we might have saved some seats because it would have been seen as a change in direction!" — Denise

"I think this is a tragic loss of a great man. Apparently, the American people are going the way of the French. I am very disturbed to see the election results, but at the same time I hope this change of government will be a wake-up call to the nation as a whole. The Democrats will make a huge mess of Iraq and the whole country and then they will blame it on the Republicans." — Luke (Minneapolis, MN)

"Wow, it's only six years too late. This is better news than yesterday's elections. It's almost like he decided to stay on long enough to screw up the Midterm elections for the republicans. Now, does Gates listen and consider other peoples diverse opinions? Does he micro-manage people who report to him?" — Jeff

"Rumsfeld's place in history is now secure. The Democrats place is as well. I hope to live long enough to read historian accounts of these times. Given the Democrat 'plan' to abruptly evacuate Iraq, I pray you do too. Rumsfeld's resignation is a national shame. At least Bush is still there to temper the Democrat rush to cut and run." — Paul (Georgetown, TX)

"I think this is a tragedy. The DOD and its civilian and military workforce have needed change for years and he was trying to implement that. There is still so much waste and lethargy in the Government, and that needs to go. We can only pray that those who understand what we are really fighting for assume leadership roles and lead this country out of disunity." — Sheila (Bloomfield, IN)

"It is obvious that our strategies in Iraq, our handling of North Korea, Afghanistan and Iran are not yielding results that are beneficial to the United States. A change is long overdue. I think Rumsfeld needed to go a long time ago. However, there is a mindset that is strongly intransigent in the higher echelons of our government. This needs to change and change fast. I also think that Cheney is part of that mindset, and needs to go too." — Ron

"I'm a registered Republican with a conservative viewpoint, but I welcome the resignation of Ronald Dumsfeld with the hope that we will finally have a strategy or plan in Iraq. Don't get me wrong, I don't wish the pullout of our troops. Maybe if they'd listen to Colin Powell or took advice from him, we'd not be so deep in it over there." — D.N. (Charleston, SC)

"I think that Rumsfeld's resignation is the one good thing that has come from this election. In my opinion, the Democratic victories on Tuesday represent a dark day for Americans. Unfortunately, they were able to use the war in Iraq and the sacrifices of those brave young men and women to their advantage, even though they collectively have contempt for the military. Rumsfeld was not a good leader and should have been replaced long ago, however the Democrats have nothing to offer that will make the country better or safer." — Timothy

"Three times I've been ashamed of my country: when I completed my tour in Vietnam and we were called the bad guys, when a draft dodger was elected president (twice), and today, when Rumsfeld was sacrificed. The Secretary is an honorable man and has done a good job considering we can't get tough with some of the most ruthless thugs I've ever seen. They kill babies and blow up schools. Today may well be the beginning of the end for America. I've never said that before today, but I think it might be true." — Mike (Dallas, TX)

"We are losing one of the most impeccable leaders of the Bush administration. He is so articulate even during the most intense crossfire in Senate committees. We thank him for his service and wish the best for him and his family; he will be missed. I hope that his successor has the same tenacity that Rumsfeld did." — Richard (Huntsville, AL)

"Rummy should have resigned over the past weekend, perhaps aiding the GOP in maintaining Congress. It's a bit too late, but a good decision nonetheless." — Joseph (Middletown, NJ)

"I am very sad to hear of Mr. Rumsfeld's resignation. He has served his country honorably and should be treated with respect. And I for one would like to thank him." — Patti (Ft. Lauderdale, FL)

"The only thing that could be better is for the president to resign." — Don

"The American people did not appreciate Donald Rumsfeld and the job he was doing. I felt safe, or as safe as you can in these times, but I will no longer feel good when I go to sleep at night. Donald Rumsfeld was an accomplished man who knew what was expected of him to win the war on terror. He was a non-nonsense man and spoke his mind, which shows strength and character. These attributes in a person are not admired in a person today the way they should be. Our society today ignores flaws in character today and rewards them by giving them responsible seats in political office. I feel we are doomed!" — Patricia

"It was about time. We need to bring our troops home. I'm not sure Iraq will ever be able to stand on their own two feet. We have lost enough young people. I hope President Bush will realize the nation has had enough!" — Charlene (Richmond, VA)

"It saddens me to see Rumsfeld step down. I think he is a political casualty of the Democrats taking over. It seems to me that war is a team effort, yet Rumsfeld seems to be taking the hit for a lot of other people. Thanks Rummy for the dedicated service you gave to our country." — Gary (Price, UT)

"Thank God for men like Rumsfield who are willing to devote years of their lives serving their country. The sad thing about his six years as Defense Secretary is that he was never fully supported by Washington politicians in his efforts to conduct his important duties. He deserves heartfelt thanks for his devoted service under less than favorable conditions." — Ralph (St. Charles, MO)

"I think the resignation of Secretary Rumsfeld signals that President Bush recognizes that a new course of action needs to be implemented in Iraq. As a soldier currently serving in Iraq, I find this news far from demoralizing." — Eugene

"It's a real shame that Rumsfeld got thrown under the bus. He was one of only a few administration officials who could actually handle the press and put them in their place — which is reporting the news, not trying to make the news." — Angela (Decatur, AL)

"I am very saddened to see Secretary Rumsfeld resign. I think he is a hero and was working to make the DOD stronger and better for the benefit of America. As a former Marine, I felt the Secretary Rumsfeld was willing to take the heat to ensure this country was safe. I think that this country will be less safe without a person as committed to its safety. Secretary Rumsfeld, I salute you and wish I had served under you. I wish you and your family the best of luck and may God bless you for all your work. Semper Fi." — Larry

"Well, it looks like Mr. Secretary realized that he does in fact answer to the citizens of the United States of America. Now let's finish what we started in Iraq — get our troops out of there and leave those people to themselves." — Tim

"I'm so disappointed that Rummy is stepping down, and I'm sure this will be demoralizing for the troops who love him so much. I'm sure he knew he wouldn't be able to compromise with the Democrats on Iraq." — Angela

"Rumsfeld listened to our troops. I hope his replacement will do the same." — C.M. (Texas)

"Unfortunately, Rumsfeld was old school and couldn't think outside the box. He just couldn't win the ground war in Iraq. Hopefully, someone new might be able to formulate a plan that can crush (once and for all) the terrorists and insurgents there." — Carlos

"I think it's about time. I didn't think he would resign, but it was a good choice and maybe now there can be some much needed changes in our strategy to the war in Iraq, and as an American soldier of 13 years, that is a huge concern of mine." — Latoya

"I think its a shame he's leaving. He's served his country magnificently under unfathomable circumstances that no previous Defense Secretary has had to deal with. God bless him!" — Howard (Birmingham, AL)

"It is about time — we would not be in this quagmire of Iraq if Rumsfeld had let the generals do what they needed to do. It is a known fact that the U.S. did not go into Iraq with enough manpower, but Rumsfeld would not listen. This is a prime example of too little, too late." — Beverly

"I believe that Rumsfeld knew that he would not be able to work with the likes of Nancy Pelosi and the rest of the Democrats. It was best for everyone involved, but it's a lousy way to go out, and a tough day for many. I had the opportunity to meet Rumsfeld while I was in the military, and he was good to the troops; he truly cared. Best wishes to him and his family." — D.B. (Summerville, SC)

"Now if the vice president and president would just follow suit, the U.S. would be much better off." — Lisa

"Ten days ago, it could have saved the Republican party, but today, it's a waste. It sickens me that the president stuck so stubbornly to a policy in Iraq when we did not have enough troops, and did so knowing it would lose us the election. It's just one more sign that Republicans have lost their spine, and will not regain it. " — Todd (Atlanta, GA)