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.
Amen. Thank you, kristinn.
Amen to that!
“I am missing you already.”
Thank you President Bush and Vice President Cheney. I’ll miss you! God save the Republic!
We all have our criticisms of Bush. But he was there when it mattered on that bright sunny morning, September 11th, 2001.
Amen and may God Bless them all and as well, have his hand on the incoming administration.
From out of the ahes of despair in the wake of the worst terror attack on this nations soil, this man has held the light of liberty for all the world to see and on from his lips Let Freedom Reign.
President Bush has always made the tough decisions, common sense and erring on the side of Protecting American Citizens from our enemies. He is Teddy Roosevelts “Man in the Arena”.
Let us pray that his predecessor understands the wisdom in the choices of this President and that he too makes his tough decisions while errring on the side of protecting American Citzens instead of relying on political expediency and possibly erring on the side of those that would do her harm.
We here in Sarasota were so excited that he was here,
and then to have the breath knocked out of us was something I'll never forget.
When he said: "they will hear from all of us soon"
will always live in my memory.
Love you as a brother "W"
I pray for this nation as Obama becomes president. Pray that he would look to God for guidance and direction and discernment. Honestly, any man who has to live in the same house his mother in law lives in needs our prayers. LOL!
“Contrast that to the previous occupant there who did many things out of the idea of covering his backside.”
And that was when he bothered to keep it covered!
God Bless, President Bush.
When it came to job #1, the protection of the homeland, you’ve have fullfilled your duty. Other issues that you and I may have not seen eye-to-eye on were secondary because there is nothing to argue about if job #1 isn’t done correctly.
I have a feeling this speech will be an emotional one and will watch on line.
Call a call earlier this p.m. I’m now the proud holder of a ticket to the ex-President Bush reception to be held in Midland, TX on Tuesday afternoon. It’s a 90-mile drive, but I want to attend. I was there when he left Midland for Washington that cold day in January 2001. I disagree with some of his decisions, more than a few actually, but he kept us safe after that terrible day in September.
President Bush has far more confidence in the Amerikan people than I do. I hope I am wrong, but I doubt it.
Bittersweet live thread ping, SJ.
How cool! Post a follow-up and some pics, if you can!
The moment I read your post and saw it was from you....I instantly thought of 2 things......”Sexual POTUS” and...........Watching Obama in the White House, will be like watching a 4 year audition on American Idol but NOT laughing.
Nice to see you!
OMG!!!! I forgot to change my tagline! LOLOLOL
I wish you could see my face, because I can feel my cheeks burning red.
While he doesn’t take the hearts of all this nation , he takes the hearts of those who understand him with him as well.
just a little post script to my earlier post
God Bless President Bush.
President Bush is exceedingly gracious with his comments - far too gracious if you ask me considering how many daggers Obama had for Bush. Yet after this the left and blacks will continue to hate Bush. Go figure.
I know there will be many who wish him good riddance believing he was the worse President ever. Sad that these same people have forgotten how grateful they were that he, not Gore, was in command on Sept. 11th.
I will always be indebted to you, Mr. President, for not letting polls and focus groups dictate how you lead us during these very trying times. History will serve you well.
I have felt love for two presidents in my lifetime: Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush. I still tear up when I look at pictures or video of President Reagan.
I’m thankful to President Bush, Vice President Cheney, and Mrs. Bush for being our leaders the last eight years. I will miss them.
(temporarily suspending tagline ;)
I’m really going to miss him. Thank you sir, and may the rest of your life be everything you wanted it to be.
From a most grateful American.
I can't believe I did that. Actually, I can. I am still blushing.
And there’s an audience there. I wasn’t expecting that.
We will all miss his steady hand on the latter of that comment.
Me either. I’m already tearing up.
Anyone have an online link?
This moment in time is what makes us the greatest nation on earth. As one leader leaves the stage a new leader takes his place.
I’m glad he’s doing it this way, not just talking to the camera.
Sniff... we are so screwed.
Did he say 5 years from now?
I wasn’t either....not that you asked me. lol
The President looks great. He probably feels the burden he's been carrying all these years finally being lifted off his shoulders.
No we are not ..we are Americans we will survive.