I've been talking to Karl for a while about his desire to spend more time with Darby and Andrew. This is a family that's made enormous sacrifices not only for our beloved state of Texas but for a country we both love.
We've been friends for a long time, and we're still going to be friends. I would call Karl Rove a dear friend. We've known each other as youngsters, interested in serving our state. We worked together so we could be in a position to serve this country.
And so I thank my friend. I'll be on the road behind you here in a little bit.
I thank Darby and I thank Karl for making a tremendous sacrifice.
And I wish you all the very best.
KARL ROVE: Today I submitted my resignation as deputy chief of staff and senior adviser, effective the end of the month.
Mr. President, I'm grateful for the opportunity you gave me to serve our nation and you. I'm grateful for being able to work with the extraordinary men and women that you've drawn into this administration. And I'm grateful to have been a witness to history. It has been the joy and the honor of a lifetime.
I've seen a man of farsighted courage put America on a war footing and protect us against a brutal enemy in a dangerous conflict that will shape this new century.
I've seen a leader respond to an economy weakened by recession, corporate scandal and terrorist attacks by taking decisive action to strengthen the economy and create jobs.
I've seen a reformer who challenged his administration, the Congress and the country to make bold changes to important institutions in great need of repair.
Mr. President, the world's turned many times since our journey began. We've been at this a long time. It's over 14 years ago that you began your run for governor and over 10 years ago that we started thinking and planning about a possible run for the presidency. And it's been an exhilarating and eventful time.
Through it all, you've remained the same man. Your integrity, character and decency have remained unchanged and inspiring.
Through all those years, I've asked a lot of my family. And they've given all I've asked and more. And now it seems the right time to start thinking about the next chapter in our family's life.
It's not been an easy decision, as you know from our discussions that started last summer. It always seemed there was a better time to leave somewhere out there in the future.
But now is the time.
I will miss, deeply miss my work here, my colleagues, and the opportunity to serve you and our nation, Mr. President.
But I look forward to continuing our friendship of 34 years, to being your fierce and committed advocate on the outside, and to the next journey we might make together.
At month's end, I will join those whom you meet in your travels, the ordinary Americans who tell you they are praying for you.
Like them, I will ask for God's continued gifts of strength and wisdom for you and your work, your vital work for our country and the world, and for the almighty's continued blessing of our great country.
Thank you again for this extraordinary opportunity.