Credit: Jeff Binion/Splash News Photo: Paula Abdul at the X Factor Auditions in Miami on June 14, 2011

The rumors have been flying all day, with Nicole Scherzinger and Steve Jones both officially canned from The X Factor. That said, we’ve been scrambling like mad to get confirmation on the exit of one more: namely, the Groups-mentoring Paula Abdul.

Abdul and her people (not to mention Fox) have been pretty closed-mouthed about the situation, but now we finally have the news... and it’s straight from the horse’s mouth.

As Paula herself puts it, she’s been in discussions with Simon Cowell about this ouster for a while. And it’s nothing personal: according to Paula, “business decisions often times override personal considerations.”

“... I’ve treasured my experience,” Paula continued, “working this past season with my extended family at Fox and Fremantle. … This truly has been a blessing and I am most grateful.”

Well, that’s a pretty gracious concession speech if we’ve ever heard one. It’s kind of a shame — if Paula had been more acrimonious, she might have earned herself an expenses-paid stay at the Girlfriend Graveyard! But some things — like self-respect — are more valuable, we suppose.

First American Idol, and now this... where will Paula go next? Maybe The Voice is hiring.

Source: TheWrap TV