Sen. Mark BegichMark BegichThe future of the Arctic 2016’s battle for the Senate: A shifting map Trump campaign left out of Alaska voter guide MORE (D-Alaska) took a more muted tack than his Senate colleague, Lisa MurkowskiLisa MurkowskiWhat we learned from Rick Perry's confirmation hearing Perry regrets saying he would abolish Energy Department Trump education pick to face Warren, Sanders MORE (R-Alaska), in reacting to Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin's (R) announcement yesterday that she'd resign at the end of July.

"I'm as surprised as all Alaskans by Governor Palin's decision to step down with nearly two years left in her term," Begich said in a statement. "There was speculation she would not seek re-election, but she gave no indication of a resignation when I met with her for 45 minutes in her Anchorage office two days ago."

The first-term Senator also pledged to work with Lt. Gov. Sean Parnell (R), who will assume Palin's position by the end of the month.

The statement is in sharp contrast with Murkowski's reaction, which attacked Palin for "abandoning" Alaska.