Skip to comments.Bush Declines Obama’s Invitation to Ground Zero
Posted on 05/03/2011 10:23:28 PM PDT by Justaham
President Obama invited former President George W. Bush to join him at ground zero in New York City on Thursday to mark the killing of Osama bin Laden, but Mr. Bush declined, a spokesman for the former president confirmed on Tuesday.
President Bush will not be in attendance on Thursday, said his spokesman, David Sherzer. He appreciated the invite, but has chosen in his post-presidency to remain largely out of the spotlight. He continues to celebrate with Americans this important victory in the war on terror.
The White House did not confirm that the invitation had been made or comment on Mr. Bushs decision.
Mr. Obama has talked this week of his hope that the successful raid on the compound where Bin Laden was hiding could serve as a unifying force in a country divided by battles over fiscal policy and many other issues. Many Republicans have praised Mr. Obama for the success of the operation.
On Monday, White House officials said Mr. Obama would go to Lower Manhattan to visit the site of the World Trade Center and meet with families of the victims of the Sept. 11 attacks, which were masterminded by Bin Laden.
Since leaving the White House, Mr. Bush has generally stayed out of the public eye, and avoided commenting on his successor. He made an exception last year when Mr. Obama asked him and former President Bill Clinton to travel to Haiti after the earthquake as his emissaries.
Mr. Bush spent much of his time in office presiding over the hunt for Bin Laden. A few days after Sept. 11, he made one of the most dramatic public appearances of his presidency, standing atop the smoldering ruins of the towers and speaking to rescue workers on a firefighters bullhorn.
(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...
The 't' should not be prefixed to the word after Americans.
Gotcha!!..... and I agree.
You mean just like Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton did?
It is ridiculous to have this ceremony.
All decent people should avoid it.
I am absolutely shocked that the Regime thought to even recognize Bush’s existence.
Good for him.
He’s not so desparate for attention he’ll let Obama use him as a prop.
Bush is class through and through. Unlike some other expresidents, who just can’t give up the spotlight.
Anyone want to bet after Obama is done he’ll run around just like Clinton, saying, “Look at me! Look at me!”
Smart move on Bushes part. He’s not going to let Obama use him for his PR moment...and going there isn’t a good idea in my mind in the first place. If I had lost a family member or friend I wouldn’t go there for this kind of “celebration??????”.
I wouldn’t go that far for his reasons not to go there. He’s just not going to be used in political ways and this is a PR move for Obama....besides he’s doing what he said. Not much in the way of anything with political overtones, thus it’s ALL on Obamas watch....
To thine own self be true. A principled man. I miss him.
He’s keeping true to his word and the humility speaks volumes.
He appeared on one or two news shows last week to promote awareness of wounded warriors and his 100 km ride across the desert with many of them. How many saw that coverage?
So it is not clear what motivates Bush to decline his invitation if it is not exactly as stated, a desire to avoid the spotlight. My own surmise is that Laura Bush pulled him aside and said "enough, enough do not go there and burnish the image of the man who has disparaged you up and down the country for the last decade."
I doubt if the consideration is that Bush ought not to burnish the image of the man who will be running against a Republican candidate for president.
Exactly right Lazlo in PA.
LOL. I love that in the “smarter than Bush” crowd in the pic is good old Bob Gates. Worked for Bush I and Bush II. The regime is so much smarter that they needed Bushes Sec of Def to keep their heads above water with military issues. Just one more thing that Obummer needed to copy from the criminal Bush administration.
Maybe any one of us who spent so much time within the sick, dysfunctional, evil world of politics, would end up the same way. Somebody's gotta do it.
I never doubted that George W is a class act.
NOBAMA is coming to Ground Zero Thursday do do his victory lap at a sacred site he cares nothing about. Cares more about the sensibilities of the Islamic terrorists that the Families whose loved ones were blown to Kingdom Come by this Muslim Death Cult.
For NOBAMA it is just another campaign rally,
For we NYers he is a pestilence that arrives with his huge motorcades like some African colonial dictator tying up traffic to toot his own born
His mother never raised him to know that braggadocio is a self indulgent infantile narcissism.
Very nice that the White House invited the former President. He has decided to stay out of the public. Former Presidents always look out for each other. It is like a fraternity.
Hmmm. nobama is going to NYC, which has a lot of his friends in it. But the folks who will turn out at ground zero may be largely from a different crowd. A crowd of hardworking, taxpaying, patriotic Americans who had two 100-story towers fall down on their own city. Families of thousands who died. Families of fireman, cops and emts. And muslims did this, and New Yorkers know it, but barry and his team won’t admit it.
When President Bush promptly made his way there after the attacks - one could see those people and that President understanding, trusting and having respect for each other.
Oh, I think I see why nobama would rather have that President at his side.
nobama is one of those people who wants to be helped.
But he’s President. Just go barry, they won’t bite your head off if you don’t insult them. They’ll just be polite if you just say something reasonable. They have their own sorrows to deal with. They may seem intimidating, but they just don’t mince words, they don’t take well to being scammed. Americans would love to have a President who is not trying to put one over on them, have them submit to government control. But they’ll settle for barry as long as they legally have to.
I agree. imo, The public celebration belongs to the military - a chance to express our pride in those who volunteer to serve in the harshest environments and to stand between us and harms’ way. But the private congratulations for justice finally served, being quietly expressed in homes across the nation, seem much too personal to share in such a public display.
I cringe at the thought of how many times Zero will utter, “I”.
“I am absolutely shocked that the Regime thought to even recognize Bushs existence.”
It is just an attempt to make Obama look presidential and American.
It is ridiculous to have this ceremony.
All decent people should avoid it.”
‘Just another opportunity for the I,I,I Won to elaborate upon his glorious courage in the “situation” room.
“Bush Declines Invitation to Obama Campaign Event”
There, that’s closer to the truth.
You can disagree with some or all of Bush’s policies, which I did, but everyone should as an individual he was a class act.
Once again a self-style "true" conservative slanders President Bush with lies. GWB campaigned heavily for hundreds of Republican candidates, raised tens of millions for them, if not hundreds of millions, and helped maintain a Republican majority until 2006. Republicans actually gained seats in the 2002 midterm elections, and again in 2004.
In 2006 and continuing into the 2008 election year, conservatives turned on Republicans due to a variety of reasons. That is why Republicans lost ground in those two elections.
My tagline is a truism that someone of your mindset will never understand. Also, it is a quote from a man your hero, Nathan Bedford Forrest, fought against. So I imagine you aren't likely a big fan of Abraham Lincoln.
Indeed, it's ironic that you, of all people, should be whining about what you see as President Bush's "indifference" to seeing Republicans prosper. After all, Nathan Bedford Forrest was the first Grand Wizard of the Ku Klux Klan. During Reconstruction, the Klan's whole purpose was to terrorize Republicans and black people throughout the south.
He probably figured there would be extra security around if Bush was there too.
Anyway, he'll take credit for the kill, then talk about how this is an end of a chapter and now we can all agree to get along. Or some such idealistic baloney.
C U T E !
Saying it another way, sad but true.
Ground Zero is a sobering site. Obama's choice to go there is obviously all political.
Bush is choosing to be remembered for the class-act photos taken of him at Ground Zero where he brought encouragement to a nation. Obama's trying to wipe those photos from the American memory by replacing them with photos where Bush stands in the shadow of a self-aggrandizing Hussein. The whole thing is gross.
Especially after the Gitmo Trial Fiasco and the Mosque 2 blocks away. Is he that deaf?
Does he think the Fire-Fighters, Cops, and Construction Workers the “real men” of NY are not going to see this as one of his Benito Chumpalini moments?
I don’t blame him. Why should he go and get used as a prop by Obama and get “Paul Ryaned” while he sits in the front row and the TOTUS bad mouths him for a half hour.
“It is ridiculous to have this ceremony.
All decent people should avoid it.”
1. A mass murdering evil thug was brought to justice. Nevertheless, there was a death and a Judeao/Christian nation should not have a ceremony to say “yeah we just killed a guy” (justified or not). There’s a portion of the Passover Seder that thanks G-d for the ten plaques that finally turned Pharoah’s heart enought to free the Hebrews. We are instructed to not rejoice in the death of others; and, even as we enjoy wine to celebrate their newly won freedom we pour off a little wine from our “cups of joy” for each of the ten plagues to remember the suffering/death caused by the plagues. In other words, justice was done but you don’t just celebrate - one must be mindful.
2. The true time to honor those killed on Sept. 11. 2001 is at the anniversary on 9/11/11. This is just a campaign speech. I personally think it is in bad taste. Let’s leave the “9/11 families” alone until the Tenth Anniversary in September.
LOL. You should put a dunce hat on zero.
THE CHARACTER OF GEORGE BUSH
Let me make it quite clear from the very beginning that I do not assail the virtuous character of George Bush. To the contrary, I admire it. In September 2006, I posted this:
I believe the author missunderestimates George Bush. If he acts, he will not act to protect his legacy, he will act to protect his country.
In recent weeks, no FReeper has been more harsh, even bitter in his criticism of President Bush. But I have never accused him of low or base motives. I have abandoned George Bush over Harriet Meir, spending, McCain Feingold, and the foolishness and ineptness over Valerie Plame, the ineptness over Katrina, validating Democrats by pandering to the likes of Teddy Kennedy, the need to change course in Iraq, and above all, over immigration, but I never thought that Bush was wrong because he would sell us out or because he was ambitious.
Bush will act, or not act, because he believes it is right and because he is a patriot. Unlike the author, Bush is not a neocon, his agenda is strictly America's future.
If one considers the list of failures for which I indict George Bush in the preceding quoted paragraphs, not one of those actions that so troubled me occurred because George Bush is a small man. To the contrary, they happened because George Bush chose options congruent with his faith. They were animated out of a fullness of heart, not a meanness of character.
THE SIGNIFICANCE OF HARRIET MEIR
Looking back, I think the nomination of Harriet Mier was a profound disillusionment for me as it was for George Will and other conservatives. I quote a reply in the context of that nomination to demonstrate that I am not personally opposed to George Bush, to the contrary I admire his character:
[Quoting George Will:] "As for Republicans, any who vote for Meir will thereafter be ineligible to argue that it is important to elect Republicans because they are conscientious conservers of the judicial branch's invaluable dignity."
As a result of the policies of the Bush administration, Republicans have forfeited their formerly kryptonite hundred year claim to be the party of fiscal responsibility.
Thus we have wantonly kicked away one of the legs of our stool. Another leg of the stool was comprised of our ability to go to the electorate, as George Bush did successfully in the last two elections, and persuasively argue that we were the party of judicial integrity. That we were the party which manned the threshold to the Constitution like the Patriots at Thermopylae to check the ravening horde of liberals who would sack the Constitution.
The Harriet Meir nomination in a stroke has needlessly compromised our ability plausibly to appeal to the electorate as a the party which stands on constitutional principle and eschews judicial opportunism.
Why did we saw off two of our three legs? On the issue of spending some would say it is because Bush was never a conservative. Others would say that it was the war that did it but that would not be the whole truth, at least that would not be the whole explanation. Others would say that it is simply the nature of a politician to buy votes with other people's money and the temptation, even to Republicans, is irresistible.
WHAT THE NOMINATION OF HARRIET MEIR REVEALED OF GEORGE BUSH'S CHARACTER
My own view is that our present dilemma is the product of a little bit of each of the above. For years now I've been posting my view the George Bush is not essentially a movement conservative but a committed Christian. Here's what I've been saying recently:
"The truth is straightforward, as usual. Bush is first a committed Christian, then a devoted family man who values personal loyalty to an extreme, and third, a conservative when that philosophy does not conflict with the first two. In this appointment, Bush believes he has satisfied all three legs of the stool.
"On the limited evidence available, I do positively believe Bush appointed her because she has been reborn. I mean that quite respectfully. I mean that he is counting on her being a new person. Most of the time it means she will vote conservative. But I honestly do not think Bush appointed her to vote conservative. I think he appointed he to vote in the SPIRIT."
The sad thing for us conservatives is to contemplate just how unnecessary the debacle over Harriet Meir really was. The whole nomination fiasco is almost uniquely unrelated to identifiable political or policy considerations. In the absence of such temporal explanations, I am left with the conclusion that Bush has selected her because she is Christian.
FAITH TRUMPS PARTY
If one accepts that Bush's Christian character is the key to understanding the man, it explains both your support of him and his virtues and my support of him and his virtues, but also my disillusionment with him-equally because of his virtues. If George Bush gives billions of our taxpayer dollars away to fight AIDS in Africa it is a noble gesture out of the impulse of a Christian heart. If he toasts Bill Clinton in the White House and by the gesture implicitly tells the world that the entire Republican effort to impeach Clinton was misplaced, he does so out of the Christian duty to love his enemy. If he panders to Teddy Kennedy in the White House, he sees himself not as sleeping with the enemy but as turning the other cheek. If he is "compassionate" in his conservatism, he sees it as the outworking of his Christian duty to give alms. Finally, if he consigns his whole administration to disintegration as he watches his approval numbers descend into the 20s because he declined Karl Rove's advice to defend the administration's Iraq policy and thus wrecks his administration along with his party's chances, he does so because as a Christian he knows he will be called to account for his actions in another venue.
If George Bush and his family think that politics is "smarmy" and that party politics are even more smarmy, it comes from his epiphany with Billy Graham which made him a new man, a man which sees another world, a larger vision. The world of party politics is grimy and transitory and not a worthy place to store up one's treasure. It is as nothing against the overwhelming contemplation of eternity.
THE PROPER ROLE OF PARTY IN GOVERNANCE
The founders designed a government which they hoped would function entirely without parties, indeed, it is the job of parties to bridge over the obstacles to power which the founders installed as checks and balances in our Constitution. The founders called partisanship "factionalism" but whatever the label they feared parties because they saw them as another name for the mob. Parties are in business to overcome the checks and balances which frustrate their ambitions.
It is hardly politic for an essayist today to openly declare that the founder's got something wrong but that is undeniably so when it comes to the issues of parties.
Today, no administration can effectively govern if it permits itself to be frustrated by the checks and balances in the Constitution. The degree to which the Congress will do the president's will largely depends upon the degree to which he can exercise party discipline. George Bush was a profound failure in this respect and Republicans paid terrible forfeits in 2006 and 2008. Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton were able to enforce enough party cohesion to escape impeachment. George Bush simply could not, or would not, control the Rinos in his own party except perhaps on the issues of maintaining the fight in Iraq and tax cuts.
So there is always a tension, thank God, between the politics of effective government on the one hand and the constitutional rights of our citizens on the other. If we drift too far toward one party government we risk our liberty. If we drift too far from party discipline, we risk the failure of government.
All this brings us to an examination of your assertion:
First of all, all Presidents have a duty to be above party politics, Presidents represent all Americans, not just their particular party. President Bush upheld that discipline in an exemplary manner and it was good for the country.
For all the reasons I've expressed above, I am bound to say that I find your sentiment noble in conception but very, very naïve when it comes to application. What George Bush did was not good for the country because he put us in the mess we are in. When political scientists write the history of the election of Barak Obama they are going to write that it was lost not by John McCain's haplessness but by George Bush. It was lost because Bush abandoned party, not the other way around as you assert, and without party the president becomes so confounded by the checks and balances put in place by our founders that he simply cannot govern effectively. If he cannot govern effectively, he cannot "represent all Americans." No party means no president, no president means no governing for America.
Nobility of character explains George Bush but it does not excuse him or relieve us of the consequences.
THE VERDICT OF HISTORY
I truly fear that George Bush will be seen as the last president of Constitutional America. The Last president of the America you and I were born in. The last president of the superpower. The last president of the nation in an age of nation states. The last president of Old America before it was swept into transnationalism..
He will be seen as a last president of virtue. The last president to believe he was obligated to tell his people the truth as he knew it. The last to have unalloyed loyalty to the nation of his birth. The last patriotic American president.
George Bush will be known as the last president to remain faithful to the Old Constitution. The last to put country before ideology, class, tribe, party, and race.
George Bush will be seen as the last Christian president. The last keeper of the light of the shining city on the hill.
You and I can have no more basic disagreement that over the role of party politics and the proper governing of America and the affirmative obligation which a president undertakes when he accepts the nomination of his party and gives the nation his oath at his inauguration and voluntarily assumes duties as the titular head of his party.
The length of your reply is of no concern to me, nor is your compendium. Nor, for that matter, the way you hide behind seeming erudition.
You slandered President Bush in claiming he did nothing to help his party. I refuted you with facts. Your response was your lengthy post that did everything but acknowledge and take responsibility for slandering the man.
(Actually, since we are being so erudite, let me be completely precise. You libeled GWB, not slandered, although I used the latter in the broader common sense than the legal sense.)
Also, as has occurred between us in the past, you ignore the fact that I called you on your hero once again, this time in the very context of your libel against GWB. Whatever good you think Nathan Bedford Forrest might have done in his life, the irrefutable fact is he was a founder of the KKK and its first Grand Wizard. Although I try hard not to impose contemporary mores on people from past eras, that is not the case here. IN HIS LIFETIME, Forrest founded and led an organization which had as it's primary (if not sole) objective to murder and terrorize both white Republicans and black people. He was, in the true sense of the term, a terrorist no different in character from those in our time. Yet Forrest is your hero, which says volumes about you.
False, I never said that.
I refuted you with facts.
False. If you did I didn't recognize them because they are so thin on the ground.
Your response was your lengthy post that did everything but acknowledge and take responsibility for slandering the man.
False unless you're incapable of understanding the plain meaning of the English language, which, judging from that last sentence you are incapable of writing.
You libeled GWB, not slandered, although I used the latter in the broader common sense than the legal sense.
I take it you are trying to draw the distinction between that which is spoken and written. It matters not, truth is a defense to both claims. If I misstated a fact-not an opinion-set it forth or shut the hell up.
Also, as has occurred between us in the past, you ignore the fact that I called you on your hero once again, this time in the very context of your libel against GWB. Whatever good you think Nathan Bedford Forrest might have done in his life, the irrefutable fact is he was a founder of the KKK and its first Grand Wizard. Although I try hard not to impose contemporary mores on people from past eras, that is not the case here. IN HIS LIFETIME, Forrest founded and led an organization which had as it's primary (if not sole) objective to murder and terrorize both white Republicans and black people. He was, in the true sense of the term, a terrorist no different in character from those in our time. Yet Forrest is your hero, which says volumes you.
It is obvious that you read my about page between your first post and your last. Go back and reread it this time slowly or better have somebody read it to you, slowly, that you might understand.
If you consider that I have been abrupt in this reply it is only because you gratuitously initiated the ad hominem and I will not tolerate it.
No Osama bump for Obama in the polls.
Just walked by Ground Zero this am. Nobody thinks making political hay of this is a good thing.
Where was he on 9/11/9 & 9/11/10?
What a narcissistic hypocrite!