Skip to comments.24 Hours to Victory -- The First Four Years
Posted on 11/01/2004 1:34:07 PM PST by PhiKapMom
The First Four Years
For America, these years will always stand apart. We have faced great challenges together these last four years a September morning none of us will ever forget, recession, and war. Together, we rose to the challenge. We made the tough choices. And because of the steadiness and resolve of the man who stood at the center of the storm, we are safer and stronger than we were four years ago. Today, America is back. Our economy is back. Hope is back.
Through turbulent times, President George W. Bush has been solid as a rock. He took an economy that was faltering, and through his actions, set it on a road to recovery. When it was unpopular to talk about how we could do a better job helping children learn, he fought for and passed the most sweeping education reforms in a generation. Facing a determined enemy hoping for weakness or uncertainty, he vowed to do whatever it took to defend America
And he kept his word.
Accomplishments can define a Presidency. But sometimes, the people you meet along the way can tell you something about its meaning. Over the last four years, George and Laura Bush have been witness to the kindness and quiet strength of the American people. The stories of courage that have inspired them are more than you can count -- and they are central to the story of this Presidency.
It was September 14, 2001, and we had just been attacked. The President had traveled to New York City to thank the rescue workers, and comfort those who had lost a husband or wife, son or daughter, mom or dad. The men in that rubble had worked around the clock, beyond the point of exhaustion, to rescue the fallen. When the President came, they gathered around him. What he did next will not soon be forgotten. You see, he still hears the men who shouted whatever it takes. Through all the difficult decisions a President has to make, he remembers.
There is nothing that could prepare you for what would come next meeting with hundreds of families who had lost loved ones. The scheduled forty-five minutes turned into an hour. An hour turned into two hours. And towards the end, he met Arlene Howard, mother of Port Authority police officer George Howard, who fell bravely trying to rescue others. Arlene had something for him her sons police shield. She asked him not to forget the fallen. Today, George W. Bush carries Shield Number 1012. And he is proud to call Arlene Howard his friend.
A little over a month later, President Bush would again return to New York City. The occasion was the World Series and the first pitch at the first game at Yankee Stadium. Before the game, he ran into Derek Jeter, who set the bar high for the President. In New York, he told the President, you throw from the mound, adding, Dont bounce it, theyll boo you. Good-natured joking aside, there was a problem: the Presidents protective vest meant that he could barely move his arms. Well, President Bush took to the top of that mound anyway. And when he threw a perfect strike, the chants of USA! USA! USA! told us loud and clear: We were back.
More often than not, the defining moments of a Presidency come when nobody's watching. Sgt. Mike McNaughton of the Louisiana National Guard had lost a leg in Afghanistan. President Bush to see him at Walter Reed Army Hospital, and asked him, "What do you like to?" I like to run, he told the President. Well, some day you and I are going to run on the South Lawn of the White House. And one morning Sgt. McNaughton showed up. They ran the track three times together.
The call to help someone in need knows no barrier of race, creed, or nationality. The yearning for freedom is universal. That's why when the door to the Oval Office opened one day, Dr. Raja Khuzai from Iraq, who was on the other side, greeted our President as "My liberator!" and then began to cry. And so did he. Another proud moment came this past May, when the President had the privilege of welcoming to the Oval Office seven Iraqi men who had had their hands cut off by Saddam Hussein. They were on their way back home, after receiving surgically-implanted hands in Houston.
Everywhere this President goes, theres a reminder of how much things have changed in the last four years, and the mission that still goes on. Few times was this more true than in Lebanon, Ohio, on May 4, when the President met 15-year-old Ashley Faulkner, whose mom had died in the World Trade Center. What followed is a hug that neither of them will ever forget.
From coast to coast, the President has met with the people going back to work, the small business owners who are expanding, with the parents whose children are now learning because of No Child Left Behind. More than anyone, he understands that policy isn't just numbers on a page; it's about government helping everyday people live their lives, not run their lives.
In four years, the world has changed in ways we could not have imagined. Here at home, the lives of military families have been touched by wars in faraway places, and 50 million are now free. Where tyranny once flourished, hope is defeating hatred. Many have wondered whether America would ever again see another Greatest Generation. That question was answered by the men who stormed the cockpit on Flight 93, by Sgt. Mike NcNaughton, by men like Pat Tillman, and by all who are defending us in the war on terror.
Last week, Lisa Johnson of Lake Stevens, Washington, reflecting on her brother, who everyday faces danger in Iraq:
You see, my brother gets it. He understands the meaning of duty, honor and sacrifice. He understands that much is at stake right now. The September 11th terrorist attacks forever changed things. Chris understands that we can no longer afford to be unwilling to tackle difficult challenges, or to prefer hyper cautious political correctness over boldness. He understands that we can no longer afford to be ambivalent about protecting our countrys freedoms. He also understands that we not only need, but already have, a President who will make difficult and perhaps unpopular decisions, to do what is best for this Country rather than for his own political or personal gain. Terrorism is a real and serious issue which HAS to be dealt with.
America needs a President who "gets it" -- a President who understands this fight deep in his heart and in his soul -- a leader who doesn't waver or flinch from the hard choices. The work we have begun together isn't finished, and it is hard. But it will be finished faster if we have the courage to confront these challenges in our time, so that our children and grandchildren can know peace.
As we reach the final hours, all of us know an undecided voter or two. to your friends. Let them know about the President's optimistic vision for four more years.
Throughout this campaign, your dedication and perseverance has inspired us. You get it. By standing strong with President Bush, you prove that hope is always stronger than pessimism and anger. Every challenge that's been placed before you -- you've met it, but there's one more, and it's a big one. If past performance is any indicator, President George W. Bush will win a resounding victory tomorrow.
On to Victory tomorrow night!
We CAN win. We WILL win. We MUST win. Everyone, off your backsides and go for the prize.
When you go vote tomorrow, remember these last Four Years and remind yourself that come tomorrow night we are going to be looking at FOUR MORE YEARS!
Don't let anyone on FR, or polls, or media people get you down -- we will win tomorrow night! Make sure that sure everyone you know that supports the President goes and votes. Let's give him a landslide!
Thanks to everyone on FR that has been upbeat in this campaign and have worked to insure a victory tomorrow night. This grateful American from the Great State of Oklahoma that had Kerry at 29% in the last poll thanks all of you Freepers who have been on the ground in Battleground States insuring a win for Bush-Cheney!
All of you stay upbeat and most importantly go VOTE!
Absolutely beautiful and inspiring. Our President is a great and wonderful man. VOTE BUSH!
Turnout is the key! You are so right!
Thanks for all that you have done, too, PKM. You're a blessing to the President and to your state.
I will crawl naked through a mile of cactus, if necessary, to vote. I have taken tomorrow off to drive folks to the polls. I thought about volunteering at sKerry HQ and trying to flip the voters, but I figure that's too dangerous.
Someone, please send this to Sheryl Crow...
How's the election looking to you Phil?
This has been a long and difficult four years for President Bush and for the nation. I may not have agreed with every decision the President has made, but on the #1 issue of our time, the War on Terror, the President has shown remarkable leadership in the face of extreme adversity. Adversity from within his own country and from the world at large. The President has made the diffcult decisions of life and death. He has done so, to protect and defend the American people, to the best of his God given ability. The President deserves reelection.
Democrat voter turnout could be at an all-time high tomorrow. That means every Republican must get out and vote. Those considering voting for a third party candidate, must make the right decision and vote for Bush-Cheney. Those Christian conservatives who stayed home in 2000, must get out to vote for Bush-Cheney. If John Kerry gets elected, the hard work of the last four years, will have been for nothing. Kerry will take this country down the road towards Euro-socialism and appeasement of our enemies. That can't happen.
"The Boston Strangler!!"
(To be sung to the Eagles' "The Disco Strangler")
Tellin' all Dem Big LIES...lives to kill...
Veterans despise Kerry 'cuz...Hanoi John is a Commie shill!!
Loser's loathing all that is Right...
Rancid government...Fer FReedom fight!!
Sayin, "Look at me, Nation, look at me.
I'm John Kerry, I'm beautiful, I'm somebody."
Don't fall prey to the charms of "The Boston Strangler!!"
FReak's been all Wrong with his Leftist throng, Nation...
Been waiting fer his time to come.
Tyrants prayin' fer RATS' Prez'dent, Lib'rals...
Kerry's long-time Socialist SCUM!!
Kerry's so twisted by his stance du jour,
Slick Willie's spawn...a pitiful sight!!
John's PRO-Tyranny with him in charge and...
WACO's burning, but that's all right.
Ol' widows like the charms of "The Boston Strangler"...
Folks, reject the vile charms of "The Boston Strangler!!"
Mudboy Slim (05/17/2004)
Way to go! That's even more then the broken glas Republican!
Thanks for the post.
I am happy Bush/Cheney sees a win.
I do too, and I doubt it'll be close.
Thanks for posting -- very well stated. Been a hard four years from the campaign that never ended! Looking forward to four more years of a much more productive and conservative agenda! :)
A great essay. No matter what happens Tues., GW has done a fantastic job as President. He deserves four more years, and God willing, he'll have them. Vote, vote, vote!!!
I agree -- it is not going to be close! I feel like 100 times better then I did the day before the election in 2000!
Thank you sir!
De nada, mi amiga....
(To be sung to Eric Clapton's version of Robert Johnson's "Crossroads")
America's at the crossroads...fightin' fer the FRee!!
Yeah, America's at a crossroads...Defend Liberty!!
Ask the Lord above for patience..."Please, folks, help US FReep!!"
Yes, Iraq's at a crossroads...Left says, "Run and Hide!!"
Right says, "Folks, we can't quit now...FReedom's ALWAYS Right!!"
John Kerry, yer a homey...even YOU must know we're Right!!
We're goin' down to DeeCee...Take some riders by yer side.
Right's comin' up to DeeCee...fer our FReedoms, we shall fight!!
GOP controls the House, Nation...Fight the Righteous Fight!!!
You can run, you can run, tell my friend-boy Willie Slick.
You can run, you can run, tell my friend-boy Slick the pri**!!
RINOS're standing at the crossroads...
Believe Right's weilding POWER!!
Mudboy Slim (5/19/04)
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.