Monday, June 16, 2008

The Candor is Enough to Knock You On Your Ass

Adam Boulton of SkyNews sat down with the President. Do not have liquids in your mouth when you read this.

BOULTON: I mean, has it been good for your marriage -- eight years in the White House?

MRS BUSH: It's been fine for our marriage.

THE PRESIDENT: Never been better.

MRS BUSH: We have a very good marriage. We both have a lot of strength. And believe me, these were years when you really needed to be really strong.

BOULTON: Yes, Cherie Blair called it the "goldfish bowl."

THE PRESIDENT: Let me say this to you about all this popularity stuff. First of all, popularity is fleeting. And I want it to be said about George W. Bush that when he finished his presidency, he looked in the mirror at a man who did not compromise his core principals for the sake of politics, or the Gallup poll, or the latest, you know, whatever. And you can't lead in this world if you're chasing something as temporary as a popularity poll.

BOULTON: I mean, you've talked a lot about freedom. I've heard you talk about freedom -- I think every time I've seen you.


BOULTON: And yet there are those who would say, look, let's take Guantanamo Bay and Abu Ghraib and rendition and all those things, and to them that is the, you know, the complete opposite of freedom.

THE PRESIDENT: Of course if you want to slander America, you can look at it one way. But you go down -- what you need to do -- I think I suggested you do this at a press conference -- if you go down to Guantanamo and take a look at how these prisoners are treated -- and they're working it through our court systems. We are a land of law.
BOULTON: But the Supreme Court have just said that -- you know, ruled against what you've been doing down there.

THE PRESIDENT: But the district court didn't. And the appellate court didn't.

BOULTON: The Supreme Court is supreme, isn't it?

THE PRESIDENT: It is, and I accept their verdict. I don't agree with their verdict. And it's not what I was doing down there. This was a law passed by our United States Congress that I worked with the Congress to get passed and sign into law.

BOULTON: But it looked like an attempt to bypass the Constitution, to a certain extent.

THE PRESIDENT: This was a law passed, Adam. We passed a law. Bypassing the Constitution means that we did something outside the bounds of the Constitution. We went to the Congress and got a piece of legislation passed.

BOULTON: Which is now being struck down, I think.

THE PRESIDENT: It is, and I accept what the Supreme Court did, and I necessarily don't have to agree with it.

My only point to you is, is that yes, I mean, we certainly wish Abu Ghraib hadn't happened, but that should not reflect America. This was the actions of some soldiers. That doesn't show the heart and soul of America. What shows the heart and soul of America is the sacrifice of our troops willing to defend our country and liberate 50 million people, or the generosity of America when it comes to providing money for HIV/AIDS in Africa, or the fact that America feeds more of the hungry in the world than any other country. That's the true America.

Noted without comment...

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