The former President thinks his presidency will eventually fade in America’s collective memory. In an interview with the Hoover Institution, Bush said his eight years as President were “awesome”. But then he said, “In 20 years, I’ll be just a name and a number 43…I dealt with 9/11 and the financial meltdown, but people will forget what ol’ 43 was like.” Really?
Polls show Bush ranks among the worst Presidents in the history of our nation. Historians rank Bush with presidents like Richard Nixon, James Buchanan (who refused to challenge the spread of slavery or intervene in the first signs of the Confederacy) and Warren G. Harding (who actually admitted publically he was not fit for office).
Here are some events that will keep George W. Bush’s legacy alive and well for generations to come (in no particular order):
- Critical failure of leadership before, during and after Hurricane Katrina hit the Gulf, killing at least 1,833 people
- Misleading Congress and the American people about a fictional link between Saddam Hussein and 9/11 and claiming Iraq had Weapons Of Mass Destruction. 4,422 U.S. Casualties
- Declaring “Mission Accomplished” on May 1, 2003
- Cutting taxes for the richest Americans while growth tanked, the debt grew and the Clinton-Era surplus bottomed out.
- Stacking the Supreme Court with some of the most ideological Justices in history. (John Roberts, Samuel Alito and failed-nominee Harriet Miers)
- Promising firefighters at Ground Zero he would pursue Osama Bin Laden, then giving up less than three months after 9/11/01
Maybe Good Old 43 will be best remembered for his “Bushisms”:
"But all in all, it's been a fabulous year for Laura and me." -George W. Bush, summing up his first year in office, Washington, D.C., Dec. 20, 2001
"We need to counter the shockwave of the evildoer by having individual rate cuts accelerated and by thinking about tax rebates." -George W. Bush, Washington, D.C., Oct. 4, 2001
"We need an energy bill that encourages consumption." -George W. Bush, Trenton, N.J., Sept. 23, 2002
"My answer is bring them on."-On Iraqi insurgents attacking U.S. forces, George W. Bush, Washington, D.C., July 3, 2003
"I hear there's rumors on the Internets that we're going to have a draft." --George W. Bush, second presidential debate, St. Louis, Mo., Oct. 8, 2004
"We stand for things." --George W. Bush, Davenport, Iowa, Aug. 5, 2004
"Iraqis are sick of foreign people coming in their country and trying to destabilize their country." --George W. Bush, interview with Al Arabiya Television, May 5, 2004
"I mean, there was a serious international effort to say to Saddam Hussein, you're a threat. And the 9/11 attacks extenuated that threat, as far as I-concerned." --George W. Bush, Philadelphia, Dec. 12, 2005
"Brownie, you're doing a heck of a job." --George W. Bush, to FEMA director Michael Brown, who resigned 10 days later amid criticism over his job performance, Mobile, Ala., Sept. 2, 2005
"You know, one of the hardest parts of my job is to connect Iraq to the war on terror." --George W. Bush, interview with CBS News' Katie Couric, Sept. 6, 2006
"It's a heck of a place to bring your family." --George W. Bush, on New Orleans, New Orleans, La., Jan. 12, 2006
"We're kicking ass." --George W. Bush, on the security situation in Iraq, to Australian Deputy Prime Minister Mark Vaile, Sydney, Australia, Sept. 5, 2007
"My job is a job to make decisions. I'm a decision -- if the job description were, what do you do -- it's decision maker." --George W. Bush, Tipp City, Ohio, April 19, 2007
"I'll be long gone before some smart person ever figures out what happened inside this Oval Office." --George W. Bush, Washington, D.C., May 12, 2008
So how will you remember George W. Bush? We’d like to see your answer.