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Farewell, Says Salazar

Sen. Ken Salazar (D-Colo.), President-elect Barack Obama's pick to become secretary of the Interior Department, bid farewell to his congressional colleagues from the Senate floor this morning. The senior senator's remarks followed his confirmation hearing before the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee.

Sen. Salazar
Michael Bennet, back, listens to the man he will replace,Sen. Ken Salazar (Colo.), during a press conference to announce Bennet's selection at the State Capitol in Denver, Jan. 3, 2009. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

He thanked Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, in particular, for pushing the passage of the farm bill -- legislation that he considered criticical "to address the issues and needs of rural America." Wrapping up his remarks, he concluded with a prayer that he learned from his brother, who worked with the founder of the United Farm workers of America, Caesar Chavez:

Show me the suffering of the most miserable, so I will know my people's plight. Bring me to pray for others, for you are present in every person. Help me take responsibility for my own life, so I can be free at last. Grant me courage to serve others, for in service there is true life. Give me honesty and patience so that the spirit will be alive among us. Let the spirit flourish and grow so that we will never tire of the struggle. Let us remember those who have died for justice, for they have given us life. Help us love even those who hate us, so we can change the world."

Reid said in remarks about Salazar that "You can tell a lot about a person by his or her family." Of Salazar's family background, Reid said, "Kenneth Lee Salazar is a fifth generation Coloradan and a twelfth generation American. The Salazar family settled in New Mexico 400 years ago and moved to Colorado's San Luis Valley in the middle of the 19th Century, claiming some of the region's first water rights. Ken Salazar grew up farming and ranching the same Colorado land his ancestors have for hundreds of years."

Once Salazar officially exits, Colorado Gov. Bill Ritter is expected to formally appoint Denver Public Schools Superintendent Michael Bennet to complete the remaining two years of Salazar's term.

--Sarah Lovenheim

By Washington Post editors  |  January 16, 2009; 1:22 PM ET
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Cowboy Ken,

Drop the Sombrero. It looks ridiculous !

Posted by: Wyeth37 | January 20, 2009 10:42 PM | Report abuse

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