A collection of quotes reacting to North Carolina Gov. Beverly Perdue's decision not to seek re-election in 2012. Some quotes were abbreviated for space and edited for AP style:
"As the first woman to serve as North Carolina's lieutenant governor and governor, Bev Perdue has never been afraid to break barriers. For over 25 years, she has fought for the people of the Tar Heel State — working to transform the state's public schools, improve the health care system, protect and attract jobs for members of the military and their families, and create the jobs of the future. Michelle and I want to congratulate Gov. Perdue on her historic tenure, and we wish Bev and her family well in the future." — President Barack Obama.
"Gov. Perdue's decision today is not shocking. Perdue's economic agenda was defined by her desire to raise taxes on all North Carolinians. The numerous scandals and failures of leadership are well documented and caused people to lose faith in her abilities to lead the state." — State Republican Party Chairman Robin Hayes.
"Gov. Perdue will leave office with a reputation as a good governor who managed this state through a difficult time. Despite the financial circumstances of our state, though, she kept a focus on education. She realized that education moves our state forward and moves our people forward. She never forgot that and it was at the core of her time as a legislator and in the executive branch. I am grateful for her service to our state and wish her well." — House Minority Leader Joe Hackney, D-Orange.
"My message has been and will continue to be that we must fix our broken government and broken economy and put our North Carolina resources back to work. That's why next week I plan to announce my intentions to seek the honor of serving as North Carolina's next governor." — Former Charlotte Mayor Pat McCrory, who is seeking the Republican nomination.
"I am the only candidate who has run and won statewide and I look forward to waging an aggressive campaign. Elections are about choices. As a state we must decide the direction in which we will turn. With this campaign, I choose to look ahead to a brighter future. I choose progress. I choose a future where public education is the foundation of our economy." — Lt. Gov. Walter Dalton, who announced he's running for governor after Perdue's decision was made public.
"It's now clear that the past four years of having a Democratic governor in North Carolina have been a failure. North Carolina's lost ground to its neighbors, and now has the worst unemployment rate in the region. It's never been more clear that North Carolina needs a Republican governor who will bring fresh ideas and a new perspective to the governor's office." — Phil Cox, executive director, Republican Governors Association.
"Following in the proud tradition of Democratic governors like Terry Sanford and Jim Hunt, she spent the last three years fighting to make North Carolina's school children her top priority in spite of tough economic times ... I respect Gov. Perdue's very difficult personal decision not to seek re-election, but it is true to character that she has promised to keep fighting for her priorities: helping North Carolina's economy and making sure that every child gets a quality education." — Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley, chairman of the Democratic Governors Association, of which Perdue is vice chairwoman.
"She has taken seriously her oath to uphold the constitution, which requires those in government to govern for the good of the whole, to protect and strengthen public education, to create economic vitality, to protect civil rights, to ensure equal protection and racial justice under the law ... When she had to choose between what was good for North Carolina children and all of its citizens, and what was good for her own career, she took the road of principle. This is how history will record of the legacy of the first of many women governors we will have." —the Rev. William Barber, president of the state chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.
"Gov. Perdue has had a long and dedicated career in public service in North Carolina. All too often, the sacrifices of public officials go unnoted, so I acknowledge her hard work and her years of service to the state. Whether we agree with her politics or not, we all should respect her for her commitment to North Carolina over these many years. Republicans in the General Assembly have disagreed deeply with the governor over many issues, but I am hopeful we can find opportunities in her remaining time in office to work on legislative matters that will become a part of her legacy, and do so for the good of all North Carolinians. I wish Gov. Perdue and her family the very best." — House Speaker Thom Tillis, R-Mecklenburg.
"Gov. Bev Perdue has been a champion for school children, and she has fought to keep our education system from being dismantled. She has also been a real advocate for the 99 percent in North Carolina." — Senate Minority Leader Martin Nesbitt, D-Buncombe.
"Gov. Beverly Perdue deserves our gratitude for guiding our state in very difficult times, and for being a good friend to the City of Charlotte. Her decision not to run for re-election came as a surprise to me. I remain focused on Charlotte and the substantial work ahead. I will spend the coming weeks talking with my family and friends about how I could best serve our city and state, and I ask the public and media for some patience as I work through those conversations." — Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx.
"Gov. Perdue deserves the state's sincere gratitude for her many years of public service. During times of extraordinary economic stress and budgetary pressures, she continues to vigorously pursue priorities near and dear to the hearts of generations of North Carolinians, including expanding and improving education at every level and a tireless pursuit of new businesses and jobs for the state." — U.S. Sen. Kay Hagan, D-N.C.
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