Friends –

This is the final edition of the Morning Must Reads. On Monday, I start at FOX News where I will be politics editor for the digital side and provide on-air analysis. It’s an exciting opportunity. I have come to really admire the FOX family in my years of making appearances on the network. They love the news business almost as much as they love America.

But it is with real sadness that I leave The Examiner. You have no idea the care and effort that goes into the production of the newspaper and all the content for The members of this small, doughty band – from the reporters, to the design crew, to the Web team, to the pressmen, to the hawkers on the Metro – are fighting ferociously for the best interests of their neighbors and their nation. I am proud to have worked with them.

A word also for my sounding boards: Congressional Correspondent Susan Ferrechio, White House Correspondent Julie Mason, Lobbying Editor Timothy P. Carney, Chief Political Correspondent Byron York and Senior Political Analyst Michel Barone. The insights I’ve offered in this space often derive from conversations I’ve had with you or even just reading your copy. What a blessing to have had the chance to work with colleagues so generous and wise.

The great blessing for all at The Examiner is the leadership of Editor Stephen G. Smith and Managing Editor Michael Hedges. At a news outlet based on a novel concept – free circulation in print, a tabloid sensibility and aggressive online emphasis – one might expect to find digital cowboys in charge. But Stephen and Michael are as steady, selfless and sound as they come. They are tough, decent, honorable men the likes of whom will be necessary whatever form journalism takes in the years to come.

The Examiner’s remarkable success in the nearly three years I have been here is attributable to their leadership and the vision of the paper’s corporate parents. At a time when most in the media world are pulling in their sails and looking for ways to ride out an endless storm, the good people of Clarity Media Group and AEG have expanded aggressively and found ways to make their own weather. Their achievements will never make the pages of the journalism snob sheets, but it should.

And one final thanks to all the writers whose work I have plundered for insights over the course of 372 editions of Morning Must Reads. I’ve flayed some of you for being lazy or biased, but I’ve mostly been impressed by how hard the people in this business work and at just how much effort goes into the daily miracle of news.

All best,