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.
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.
Chrissy and his unindicted co-conspirators in the lamestream media believe that America should be guided by the whims and opinions of the media! This is the main reason President Bush is hated.
Note that Sarah Palin said right off the bat that she doesn't care what the media says and they attacked her faster and more viciously than they ever did with Reagan or GWB.
Writing to Chrissy is a waste of tree. He is an incredibly small and insignificant "man" compared to our President. If he wants to be Obama's Monica then I say to him "you go girl!"
We need to find worthy men and women to place in office. That will take time, so now is a good time to start.
President Bush just displayed a class act we haven’t seen from previous administrations. After all he has been put through, names he has been called, lies told about him and false accusations thrown at him, he stood up and thanked America for letting him serve.
Lesser men would have stood and extended their middle finger at those who denigrated him daily.
He is a class act and restored the class and prestige to the Presidency that others demeaned.
His steady hand will be missed.
“bushbot” is simply a term undermining liberals have concocted while projecting attention away from their own BDS.
Reasonable people understand that Bush wasn’t perfect, and we all have their diffeences with him on some issue or another, but he also wasn’t destroyed by his enemies and history will be kind to him.
I think all of us here have had significant disagreements with President Bush over the past several years, but you summed it up quite nicely.
I will miss him, especially given what awaits us in mere days.
One thing about Bush...he was who he was, and did what he honestly thought was right for the Country.
The President tried to tell us tonight -- his supporters -- that this is a great country and we should always be optimistic. I fear what Obama and the 'rats will do but I am not fearful that my country will be ruined. We must continue to fight for our principles!
I’ll miss him a lot. He’s been a good President. He’s done his best at keeping us safe and I thank him for it. I can’t wait to read the book he said he was going to write.
I hope so much that some sort of celebration is arranged in downtown Dallas to welcome The President back here.
Can’t go to Midland, but will definitely take the train to Dallas.
God Bless President George W Bush and his lovely wife, Laura. They served our country well and the W took a stand on terrorism, which remains our greatest threat. I pray President Obozo does not put our Nation in harms way.
God bless you, President Bush and Vice President Cheney. Thank you for your service to this nation and for keeping us safe. And special thanks to Mrs. Bush and Mrs. Cheney for the class and grace you brought to the White House. We will miss you all every day.
One thing we do know about Obama — his track record shows he is indecisive. In the Presidency, that will show up as weakness.
I think Obama is capable of being the second President since 1896 to lose the Presidency after his party holds it for only one term.
Republicans will need to get it together quickly. We’ve done it before and we’ll do it again.
Time for some sick days. Take Monday and Wednesday off too.
You caught the flu! Or have a bad back,etc.:)
You can't work like that!
Yep, you're right.
Oh, his numbers won't dip below 65%, they'll be faked just like the 70% approval ratings of Clinton.
Do you remember how shocked the media was when President Reagan died and the streets were lines with people who stopped their cars and watched respectfully as the hearse passed? They told everyone he had low ratings too, but the people just quietly loved him and never argued about it. It will be the same with President Bush. The more time passes the more people will realize what a great man he is.
It's why I have such fears for the future. I believe that Hillary, Chris Matthews, Keith Olberman, and many in the cabinet will not do what they think is right for the good of the country, but for what they think this country SHOULD BE about.
God bless President Bush.
My thanks to President Bush, Vice President Cheney, the men and women serving in our armed forces and all those who have toiled day and night to keep America safe and free.
I echo your sentiments. May God bless and protect them all.
We are blessed that Pres. Bush and Vice President Cheney have been in our White House in these times. I’ll always be grateful to them.
I think they are waiting until after Pres. Bush and Laura get on that helicopter for the last time. Graciously going home. That clears the table.
Hugging his daughters
He is at peace, and rightfully so ... he gave his all, and did everything he could possibly do for the sake of our precious America and our beloved troops.
The calmness in his demeanor struck me when he and Laura were interviewed on Larry King Live the other night. You can see the peace ... it's radiating from him, and thank God. Weaker men would've been crippled or institutionalized from the stress he's endured. (I LOVE Laura's rebuke of Obama .. ;). God bless them richly.
“...They don’t want us to hear them trying to blackmail Bush into suppporting their Liberal budget programs- as the price to protect Americans.
It’s always the money with Dems.”
7 posted on Thursday, September 13, 2001 1:12:14 PM by mrsmith
Our Constitution puts a President in a great disadvantage with the Legislature when conducting war.
Thank you President Bush for prosecuting the war faithfully despite the advantage you knew the Dems would make of it.
**FNC IS REBROADCASTING THE PRESIDENT’S SPEECH NOW**
“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.”
Our President had a constant reminder everyday of what potentially could happen to our country. I think as the years go more will be exposed about how much this man had to endure and what decisions he had to make that we knew nothing about and still don’t. He reminds me of how a father will not tell his children everything about the evil that goes on in this world. There is a time and a place for that and I wonder at times if that will be the case for our country.
I am going to very sincerely and very deeply miss this man ,
George W. Bush . I will really miss Laura too.
God bless them both . May they live long happy , peaceful lives. I will never forget them , nor cease to be grateful for all he’s done .
Aloha! & Mahalo!
My thanks goes out to all of them as well.
Many of our wounded warriors are very concerned at what next week will bring. (rightfully so)
God Bless President Bush, Laura, Vice President Cheney, Lynne and their families. They have served our nation well and will always have my admiration and undying gratitude.
Agreed! My only real complaint about him.
I think you’re right. Just knowing that we’re going to have this empty suit as president is enough to make me truly sick, I wouldn’t even be faking it.
I will always treasure that day spent at the White House with this great man and the #2 great man. *sigh*
Issues surrounding the occupation of Iraq
seemed to knock the wind out of the Bush presidency.
I may come to miss President Bush,
but I don’t now.
Have to admit I just couldn’t read the live thread as I was listening to this dear man. Too many tears...We have been blest!
I am really upset I won’t get to go to his farewell trip here to Midland, TX because I have to attend a school board meeting instead. My paper is sending virtually everyone to the event except for me......so distressing!
It is the first place he will go after leaving D.C. Big bash here.....
“My thanks to President Bush, Vice President Cheney, the men and women serving in our armed forces and all those who have toiled day and night to keep America safe and free.”
Couldn’t agree more. While people from both sides of the aisle nitpick at him, he remains a steadfast leader for All Americans. Not an easy task. Also, I believe he always tried to do what he campainged on, regardless of the political fallout. Integrity is a rare quality in a politician and President Bush has it.
God Bless him and his family.
Radio Address list ping!
It is equally sickening to come here and see so many people getting petty at this moment.
It has been getting progressively worse for the past 2 years. Sickening is the right word!
Well I do hope we only get better from now on. Most freepers work hard when we are the underdogs. I will be glad when the bickering stops.
"Either you are with us or you are for the terrorists."
From President George W Bush Inaugural Address in 2001... Thanks for posting this Kristinn.....President George W will be missed....even if we had our differences at times...HE WILL BE SORELY MISSED.
Thank you for stating this fact! It has always seemed obvious to me.
Pres. Bush is healthy. Dye his grey hair now to the original brown and he will look like he did in 2000.
And in his private convos with Obama, Obama's jaw must have dropped to the table if not the floor with what he heard. Obama is not going to please the wackos with what he has to do. The president after Obama will be dealing with that threat too.
Obama has advice of previous Presidents to ask advice from and their administration people for what happened and what they did in secure convos. It's a small group of 5. Bush ordered his admin to help Obama's incoming admin because it's that important.