STEVE INSKEEP, host:
And let's end this hour with the morning's major story - the resignation of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales.
His boss, President Bush, spoke to reporters a few minutes ago.
President GEORGE W. BUSH: After months of unfair treatment that has created harmful - a harmful distraction at the Justice Department, Judge Gonzales decided to resign his position, and I accept his decision.
INSKEEP: In his own announcement, Alberto Gonzales did not say why he's leaving the Justice Department.
Attorney General ALBERTO GONZALES (Department of Justice): Let me say that it's been one of my greatest privileges to lead the Department of Justice. I have great admiration and respect for the men and women who work here. I have made a point as attorney general to personally meet as many of them as possible. And today, I want to, again, thank them for their service to our nation. It is through their continued work that our country and our communities remain safe, that the rights and civil liberties of our citizens are protected and the hopes and dreams of all of our children are secured.
INSKEEP: As Alberto Gonzales resigned, we also heard today from New York Democratic Senator Chuck Schumer, among those who called for the attorney general's resignation. The Democrat had this advice for the White House as it chooses Gonzales' replacement.
Senator CHARLES SCHUMER (Democrat, New York): Don't choose the path of confrontation and throw down the gauntlet with a nominee that we will find it difficult to accept. We are willing to meet you in the middle of the road. All we ask is that you choose somebody who puts rule of law first. We're not looking for confrontation here.
INSKEEP: That's New York Democrat Charles Schumer, one of many voices speaking today about the resignation of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales. He was criticized by both Democrats and Republicans for a number of controversies. But there was also this contrary statement today from House Minority Leader John Boehner, a Republican of Ohio, who said Gonzales has dedicated years of his life to public service, both in Texas and at the federal level, and I wish him and his family all the best as they enter the next stage of their lives.
We'll go on to cover the next stage of this story.
You're listening to MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Steve Inskeep with Renee Montagne.
NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by Verb8tm, Inc., an NPR contractor, and produced using a proprietary transcription process developed with NPR. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of NPR’s programming is the audio record.