Skip to comments.Live Thread: President Bush Farewell Address 8 P.M. EST ("this great Nation will never tire …")
Posted on 01/15/2009 3:25:03 PM PST by kristinn
President George W. Bush will address the nation from the East Room of the White House at 8 p.m. EST.
The White House released excerpts of the speech to the media:
Five days from now, the world will witness the vitality of American democracy. In a tradition dating back to our founding, the presidency will pass to a successor chosen by you, the American people. Standing on the steps of the Capitol will be a man whose story reflects the enduring promise of our land. This is a moment of hope and pride for our whole Nation. And I join all Americans in offering best wishes to President-elect Obama, his wife Michelle, and their two beautiful girls.
Tonight I am filled with gratitude. I thank the American people for the trust you have given me. I thank you for the prayers that have lifted my spirits. And I thank you for the countless acts of courage, generosity, and grace that I have witnessed these past eight years.
This evening, my thoughts return to the first night I addressed you from this house September 11, 2001. That morning, terrorists took nearly 3,000 lives in the worst attack on America since Pearl Harbor.
As the years passed, most Americans were able to return to life much as it had been before 9/11. But I never did. Every morning, I received a briefing on the threats to our Nation. And I vowed to do everything in my power to keep us safe.
Over the past seven years, a new Department of Homeland Security has been created. The military, the intelligence community, and the FBI have been transformed. Our Nation is equipped with new tools to monitor the terrorists movements, freeze their finances, and break up their plots. And with strong allies at our side, we have taken the fight to the terrorists and those who support them.
There is legitimate debate about many of these decisions. But there can be little debate about the results. America has gone more than seven years without another terrorist attack on our soil. This is a tribute to those who toil day and night to keep us safe law enforcement officers, intelligence analysts, homeland security and diplomatic personnel, and the men and women of the United States Armed Forces.
When people live in freedom, they do not willingly choose leaders who pursue campaigns of terror. When people have hope in the future, they will not cede their lives to violence and extremism. So around the world, America is promoting human liberty, human rights, and human dignity. We are standing with dissidents and young democracies, providing AIDS medicine to bring dying patients back to life, and sparing mothers and babies from malaria. And this great republic born alone in liberty is leading the world toward a new age when freedom belongs to all nations.
For eight years, we have also strived to expand opportunity and hope here at home. Across our country, students are rising to meet higher standards in public schools. A new Medicare prescription drug benefit is bringing peace of mind to seniors and the disabled. Every taxpayer pays lower income taxes. The addicted and suffering are finding new hope through faith-based programs. Vulnerable human life is better protected. Funding for our veterans has nearly doubled. Americas air, water, and lands are measurably cleaner. And the Federal bench includes wise new members like Justice Sam Alito and Chief Justice John Roberts.
Like all who have held this office before me, I have experienced setbacks. There are things I would do differently if given the chance. Yet I have always acted with the best interests of our country in mind. I have followed my conscience and done what I thought was right. You may not agree with some tough decisions I have made. But I hope you can agree that I was willing to make the tough decisions.
The decades ahead will bring more hard choices for our country, and there are some guiding principles that should shape our course.
While our Nation is safer than it was seven years ago, the gravest threat to our people remains another terrorist attack. Our enemies are patient, and determined to strike again. America did nothing to seek or deserve this conflict. But we have been given solemn responsibilities, and we must meet them. We must resist complacency. We must keep our resolve. And we must never let down our guard.
At the same time, we must continue to engage the world with confidence and clear purpose. In the face of threats from abroad, it can be tempting to seek comfort by turning inward. But we must reject isolationism and its companion, protectionism. Retreating behind our borders would only invite danger. In the 21st century, security and prosperity at home depend on the expansion of liberty abroad. If America does not lead the cause of freedom, that cause will not be led.
As we address these challenges and others we cannot foresee tonight America must maintain our moral clarity. I have often spoken to you about good and evil. This has made some uncomfortable. But good and evil are present in this world, and between the two there can be no compromise.
Even in the toughest times, we lift our eyes to the broad horizon ahead.
I have confidence in the promise of America because I know the character of our people. This is a Nation that inspires immigrants to risk everything for the dream of freedom. This is a Nation where citizens show calm in times of danger and compassion in the face of suffering.
These virtues give me an unshakable faith in America. We have faced danger and trial, and there is more ahead. But with the courage of our people and confidence in our ideals, this great Nation will never tire
and never fail.
Hi, Buddy :)
go for it!
and thank you.
BDS is about as vile and classless as liberalism gets.
Although there have been better presidents, none has been more decent, honest, patriotic, humble and genuine. Some of his policies were misguided, but in all I believe history will judge his service very positively. Thank you, President and Mrs. Bush for your dedicted service to our country.
Thank you Mr. President for your great leadership in this war on terror. We will miss you a lot.
Chris Matthews is a piece of garbage. his boy got elected but that’s not enough for him. He has to kick Bush on his way out after the President has been so gracious to Obama. Hey Chrissy, I hope you and your family aren’t in the path when the next terror attack hits...... I can’t wait to see his boy crash and burn. And he will.
Which may happen. Mike Gallegher is not free to say what Pres. Bush said when he brought them up at their lunch yesterday. He just said be hopeful.
Something can only be a test if one understands and/or cares about the consequences of failure. The Left would be thrilled if the U.S. were brought down to the status of, say, France or Italy. We're about to find out what hides behind the Obama mask. Is he the Marxist he claimed to be in one of his multitude (seems like a multitude) of autobiographies? Is he the post-American "man of the world" he claimed to be during his Berlin speech? Or is he the garden-variety center-Left American politician analgous to Bill Clinton, which the media has told us his cabinet appointments indicate?
Who is this man? What will he recognize as a "test" of his presidential leadership? Biden, for all his pathetic nature, is a bit closer to an old-fashioned patriotic Democrat than many of his former senate colleagues. So I agree, Jonny, I wonder what he saw in the threat assessments that caused him to share with us such a moment of clarity.
..a sanwdich made with moldy bread, sour mayonaise and rancid meat.
I am so glad that you told off the RNC and I’m going to do the same when they call.
President Bush said that some in his own party tried to get him to cave and change direction against his own principles, for the sake of the party. Of course, he did not do it and thank God that he didn’t. He can live with himself. The republican congress left him out to dry for the past 3 yrs. They will live to regret this in time! We have to let them know how we feel about the way they treated President Bush.
I’m being forced by my principal to watch the inauguration of zero with my 5th grade class-ugh! If anyone knows when Bush’s speech might be rebroadcast please let me know. I want to tape it and have my class watch it before zero’s speech. Hopefully they’ll notice the huge difference between the two.
No. A Hope and Change Sandwich is based on already digested food. See:)?
You say it so much nicer than I do.
I need a greater measure of your grace.
Heads up. Imus on Hannity in a few minutes.
God Bless President Bush.
God bless you, Vor.
A plus for feisty writing.
For 8 years we people who support President Bush have been attacked by the Bush-haters here. He will be gone soon, and what contribution will they then make?
I stand with you. I don't care if I am banned anymore. I only stayed here to support the President and work for getting a Republican elected. All of that is done.
The Bush-haters have done their job. They have divided the party and cost us the election, and they have undermined the war on terror, by driving President Bush's approval ratings down. One day they will have to answer to the Creator for their actions, which have been based on bigotry, spite, envy, and malice. I fervently pray they repent and realize what harm they have done.
May God bless President and Mrs. Bush. They have served our nation well.
It's anybody's guess, isn't it? It's scary how much we don't know about this man.
At best, he will be a poll-watching president, like Clinton. He will be nervous if his numbers dip below, say, 65% and will say and do anything (no matter how meaningless) to keep those numbers up.
At worst ... I don't want to think about that.
I have the greatest respect for President Bush. I will deeply miss him just as I missed presidents Reagan and Bush when they left.
President Bush has great character and dignity. He did think more of the country than he did of himself or of his reputation in the media. This is one of the major reasons his approval numbers are so low. This constant Bush bashing has taken its toll, which is what it was intended to do. There are things with which I disagree with the President (e.g., immigration), but I have never doubted for one moment that he was doing what he thought was the right thing.
President Bush will go down in history as one of America’s greatest presidents. Of this I have no boubt whatsoever. Some will scoff at this suggestion, but these are people who follow the lead of the liberal media. I think for myself. The economy prospered under president Bush. It was only when the liberals took control of Congress and raised the minimum wage, blocked energy exploration and wrecked the lending institutions that the economy began to turn. They atacked him first on the war and then, when that went well, they atacked him on the economy. But history will vindicate him.
One day I hope to shake his hand and thank him personally for his courageous stand. Regardless, he has my respect and gratitude.
God bless president Bush.