George W. Bush
Offizielles Porträt, 2003
|43. Präsident der Vereinigten Staaten|
20. Januar 2001 - 20. Januar 2009
|Vorangegangen von||Bill Clinton|
|gefolgt von||Barack Obama|
|46. Gouverneur von Texas|
17. Januar 1995 - 21. Dezember 2000
|Vorangegangen von||Ann Richards|
|gefolgt von||Rick Perry|
George Walker Bush
6. Juli 1946
New Haven, Connecticut , USA
.( M. 1977 )
|Residenz||Crawford, Texas , USA|
|Zivilpreise||Liste der Auszeichnungen und Preise|
|Niederlassung / Service|
George Walker Bush (geboren 6. Juli 1946) ist ein US - amerikanischen Politiker und Geschäftsmann, der als 43. diente Präsident der Vereinigten Staaten von 2001 bis 2009. Ein Mitglied der Republikanischen Partei , hatte er zuvor die 46th gewesen Gouverneur von Texas von 1995 bis 2000. Er wurde in die Familie Bush hineingeboren : Sein Vater, George HW Bush , war von 1989 bis 1993 der 41. Präsident der Vereinigten Staaten.
Als ältester Sohn von Barbara und George HW Bush ist er der zweite Sohn eines ehemaligen Präsidenten der Vereinigten Staaten, der selbst Präsident wird. Der erste ist John Quincy Adams , der Sohn von John Adams . Er flog Kampfflugzeuge in der Texas und Alabama Air National Guard . Nach seinem Abschluss am Yale College im Jahr 1968 und der Harvard Business School im Jahr 1975 arbeitete er in der Ölindustrie. Bush heiratete 1977 Laura Welch und kandidierte kurz darauf erfolglos für das US-Repräsentantenhaus . Später war er Miteigentümer des Baseballteams der Texas Rangers , bevor er den Amtsinhaber besiegteAnn Richards bei den Gouverneurswahlen 1994 in Texas . Als Gouverneur unterstützte Bush erfolgreich die Gesetzgebung zur Deliktsreform, erhöhte die Bildungsfinanzierung, setzte höhere Standards für Schulen und reformierte das Strafjustizsystem . Bush trug auch dazu bei, Texas zum führenden Produzenten von Windstrom in den USA zu machen. Bush wurde im Jahr 2000 zum Präsidenten gewählt, als er den amtierenden demokratischen Vizepräsidenten Al Gore nach einem knappen und umstrittenen Sieg besiegte, der eine Entscheidung des Obersten Gerichtshofs beinhaltete , eine Nachzählung in Florida zu stoppen . Er wurde die vierte Person, die zum Präsidenten gewählt wurdeohne einen Volksabstimmungssieg .
Nach seinem Amtsantritt setzte Bush ein Steuersenkungsprogramm in Höhe von 1,3 Billionen US-Dollar und das No Child Left Behind Act durch , ein wichtiges Gesetz zur Reform des Bildungswesens. Er drängte auch auf sozialkonservative Bemühungen wie das Gesetz über das Verbot von Schwangerschaftsabbrüchen und auf Glauben basierende Wohlfahrtsinitiativen . Als Reaktion auf die Terroranschläge vom 11. September gründete Bush das Department of Homeland Security und startete einen " Krieg gegen den Terror ", der mit dem Krieg in Afghanistan im Jahr 2001 begann. Er unterzeichnete auch das umstrittene Patriot Act , um die Überwachung von Verdächtigen zu genehmigen Terroristen. Im Jahr 2003 bestellte Bush eineInvasion des Irak , Beginn des Irak-Krieges , wobei seine Regierung argumentierte, dass das Saddam-Hussein- Regime über ein aktives Massenvernichtungswaffenprogramm (WMD) verfügte und dass die irakische Regierung eine Bedrohung für die USA darstellte. Einige Regierungsbeamte behaupteten fälschlicherweise, Hussein habe ein operative Beziehung zu Al-Qaida, den Tätern des Anschlags vom 11. September. Im Irak wurden niemals Lagerbestände an Massenvernichtungswaffen oder ein aktives Massenvernichtungswaffenprogramm gefunden. Bush unterzeichnete auch das Medicare Modernization Act , mit dem Medicare Part D geschaffen wurde , und die Finanzierung des AIDS- Hilfsprogramms PEPFAR .
Bush wurde bei den Präsidentschaftswahlen 2004 für eine zweite Amtszeit wiedergewählt und besiegte den demokratischen Senator John Kerry in einem engen Rennen. Während seiner zweiten Amtszeit erzielte Bush mehrere Freihandelsabkommen und ernannte John Roberts und Samuel Alito erfolgreich zum Obersten Gerichtshof. Er bemühte sich um wesentliche Änderungen der Sozialversicherungs- und Einwanderungsgesetze, doch beide Bemühungen scheiterten. Die Kriege in Afghanistan und im Irak gingen weiter und 2007 startete er eine Truppenflut im Irak . Bush erhielt Kritik aus dem gesamten politischen Spektrum   für seinen Umgang mit dem Hurrikan Katrina ,  und die mittelfristige Entlassung von US-Anwälten . Inmitten dieser Kritik erlangte die Demokratische Partei bei den Wahlen 2006 die Kontrolle über den Kongress zurück. Im Dezember 2007 traten die USA in die Große Rezession ein und veranlassten die Bush-Regierung, die Zustimmung des Kongresses für mehrere Wirtschaftsprogramme zu erhalten, die das Finanzsystem des Landes erhalten sollen, einschließlich des Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP), um giftige Vermögenswerte von Finanzinstitutenzu kaufen. Bush gehörte zu den beliebtesten und unbeliebtesten US-Präsidenten in der Geschichte. Nach den Anschlägen vom 11. September erhielt er die höchsten registrierten Zustimmungswerte, aber eine der niedrigsten dieser Bewertungen während desFinanzkrise 2008 .  Bush beendete seine zweite Amtszeit 2009 und kehrte nach Texas zurück. Im Jahr 2010 veröffentlichte er seine Memoiren, Decision Points .  Seine Präsidentenbibliothek wurde 2013 eröffnet. Seine Präsidentschaft wurde in historischen Rankings der US-Präsidenten als unterdurchschnittlich eingestuft , obwohl sich seine öffentlichen Günstigkeitsbewertungen seit seinem Ausscheiden aus dem Amt verbessert haben.
frühes Leben und Karriere
Gouverneur von Texas
President der vereinigten Staaten
George Walker Bush was born on July 6, 1946, at Grace-New Haven Hospital (now Yale New Haven Hospital) in New Haven, Connecticut, while his father was a student at Yale. He was the first child of George Herbert Walker Bush and Barbara Pierce. He was raised in Midland and Houston, Texas, with four siblings, John, Neil, Marvin and Dorothy. Another younger sister, Robin, died from leukemia at the age of three in 1953. His paternal grandfather, Prescott Bush war ein US-Senator aus Connecticut .  Sein Vater war von 1981 bis 1989 Ronald Reagans Vizepräsident und von 1989 bis 1993 der 41. US-Präsident. Bush hat englische und einige deutsche Vorfahren sowie entferntere niederländische , walisische , irische , französische und schottische Wurzeln. 
Bush attended public schools in Midland, Texas until the family moved to Houston after he had completed seventh grade. He then spent two years at The Kinkaid School, a prep school in Piney Point Village, Texas in the Houston area.
Bush attended high school at Phillips Academy, a boarding school in Andover, Massachusetts, where he played baseball and was the head cheerleader during his senior year. He attended Yale University from 1964 to 1968, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts degree in history. During this time, he was a cheerleader and a member of the Delta Kappa Epsilon, serving as the president of the fraternity during his senior year. Bush became a member of the Skull and Bones society as a senior. Bush was a rugby union player and was on Yale's 1st XV. He characterized himself as an average student. His GPA during his first three years at Yale was 77, and he had a similar average under a nonnumeric rating system in his final year.
After his application to the University of Texas School of Law was rejected, Bush entered Harvard Business School in the fall of 1973. He graduated in 1975 with an MBA degree. He is the only U.S. president to have earned an MBA.
Family and personal life
Bush was engaged to Cathryn Lee Wolfman in 1967, but the engagement did not last. Bush and Wolfman remained on good terms after the end of the relationship. While Bush was at a backyard barbecue in 1977, friends introduced him to Laura Welch, a schoolteacher and librarian. After a three-month courtship, she accepted his marriage proposal and they wed on November 5 of that year. The couple settled in Midland, Texas. Bush left his family's Episcopal Church to join his wife's United Methodist Church. On November 25, 1981, Laura Bush gave birth to fraternal twin daughters, Barbara and Jenna.
Prior to getting married, Bush struggled with multiple episodes of alcohol abuse. In one instance on September 4, 1976, he was pulled over near his family's summer home in Kennebunkport, Maine, for driving under the influence of alcohol. He was cited for DUI, fined $150 (equivalent to $674 in 2019), and got his Maine driver's license briefly suspended. Bush said his wife has had a stabilizing effect on his life, and he attributes her influence to his 1986 decision to give up alcohol. While Governor of Texas, Bush said of his wife, "I saw an elegant, beautiful woman who turned out not only to be elegant and beautiful, but very smart and willing to put up with my rough edges, and I must confess has smoothed them off over time."
Bush has been an avid reader throughout his adult life, preferring biographies and histories. He read 14 Lincoln biographies, and during the last three years of his presidency, read 186 books. During his presidency, Bush read the Bible daily, though at the end of his second term he said on television that he is "not a literalist" about Bible interpretation. Walt Harrington, a journalist, recalled seeing "books by John Fowles, F. Scott Fitzgerald, James Joyce, and Gore Vidal lying about, as well as biographies of Willa Cather and Queen Victoria" in his home when Bush was a Texas oilman. Other activities include cigar smoking and golf. After leaving the White House, Bush took up oil painting.
In May 1968, Bush was commissioned into the Texas Air National Guard. After two years of training in active-duty service, he was assigned to Houston, flying Convair F-102s with the 147th Reconnaissance Wing out of the Ellington Field Joint Reserve Base. Critics, including former Democratic National Committee Chairman Terry McAuliffe, have alleged that Bush was favorably treated due to his father's political standing as a member of the House of Representativesunter Berufung auf seine Auswahl als Pilot trotz seiner geringen Eignungstests für Piloten und seiner unregelmäßigen Teilnahme.  Im Juni 2005 veröffentlichte das US-Verteidigungsministerium alle Aufzeichnungen über den Dienst der Texas Air National Guard von Bush, die in seinen offiziellen Archiven verbleiben. 
In late 1972 and early 1973, he drilled with the 187th Fighter Wing of the Alabama Air National Guard. He had moved to Montgomery, Alabama, to work on the unsuccessful U.S. Senate campaign of Republican Winton M. Blount. In 1972, Bush was suspended from flying for failure to take a scheduled physical exam. He was honorably discharged from the Air Force Reserve on November 21, 1974.
He remains the most recent President to serve in the United States Military.
In 1977, Bush established Arbusto Energy, a small oil exploration company, although it did not begin operations until the following year. He later changed the name to Bush Exploration. In 1984, his company merged with the larger Spectrum 7, and Bush became chairman. The company was hurt by decreased oil prices, and it folded into HKN, Inc., with Bush becoming a member of HKN's board of directors. Questions of possible insider trading involving HKN arose, but a Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) investigation concluded that the information Bush had at the time of his stock sale was not sufficient to constitute insider trading.
In April 1989, Bush arranged for a group of investors to purchase a controlling interest in the Texas Rangers baseball franchise for $89 million and invested $500,000 himself to start. He then was managing general partner for five years. He actively led the team's projects and regularly attended its games, often choosing to sit in the open stands with fans. Bush's sale of his shares in the Rangers in 1998 brought him over $15 million from his initial $800,000 investment.
Early political involvement
In 1978, Bush ran for the House of Representatives from Texas's 19th congressional district. The retiring member, George H. Mahon, had held the district for the Democratic Party since 1935. Bush's opponent, Kent Hance, portrayed him as out of touch with rural Texans, and Bush lost the election with 46.8 percent of the vote to Hance's 53.2 percent.
Bush and his family moved to Washington, D.C., in 1988 to work on his father's campaign for the U.S. presidency. He was a campaign advisor and liaison to the media, and assisted his father by campaigning across the country. In December 1991, Bush was one of seven people named by his father to run his father's 1992 presidential re-election campaign, as a "campaign advisor". The previous month, his father had asked him to tell White House chief of staff John H. Sununu to resign.
Governor of Texas (1995–2000)
Bush erklärte seine Kandidatur für die Gouverneurswahlen 1994 in Texas, während sein Bruder Jeb das Gouverneursamt von Florida anstrebte . Seine Kampagne konzentrierte sich auf vier Themen: Wohlfahrtsreform, Deliktsreform , Verbrechensbekämpfung und Bildungsverbesserung.  Bushs Wahlkampfberater waren Karen Hughes , Joe Allbaugh und Karl Rove . 
After easily winning the Republican primary, Bush faced popular Democratic incumbent Governor Ann Richards. In the course of the campaign, Bush pledged to sign a bill allowing Texans to obtain permits to carry concealed weapons. Richards had vetoed the bill, but Bush signed it into law after he became governor. According to The Atlantic, the race "featured a rumor that she was a lesbian, along with a rare instance of such a tactic's making it into the public record – when a regional chairman of the Bush campaign allowed himself, perhaps inadvertently, to be quoted criticizing Richards for 'appointing avowed homosexual activists' to state jobs". The Atlantic, and others, connected the lesbian rumor to Karl Rove, but Rove denied being involved. Bush won the general election with 53.5 percent against Richards' 45.9 percent.
Bush used a budget surplus to push through Texas's largest tax-cut, $2 billion. He extended government funding for organizations providing education of the dangers of alcohol and drug use and abuse, and helping to reduce domestic violence. Critics contended that during his tenure, Texas ranked near the bottom in environmental evaluations. Supporters pointed to his efforts to raise the salaries of teachers and improve educational test scores.
In 1999, Bush signed a law that required electric retailers to buy a certain amount of energy from renewable sources (RPS), which helped Texas eventually become the leading producer of wind powered electricity in the U.S.
In 1998, Bush won re-election with a record 69 percent of the vote. He became the first governor in Texas history to be elected to two consecutive four-year terms. In his second term, Bush promoted faith-based organizations and enjoyed high approval ratings. He proclaimed June 10, 2000, to be Jesus Day in Texas, a day on which he urged all Texans to "answer the call to serve those in need".
Throughout Bush's first term, he was the focus of national attention as a potential future presidential candidate. Following his re-election, speculation soared, and within a year he decided to seek the 2000 Republican presidential nomination.
2000 presidential candidacy
Incumbent Democratic president Bill Clinton was in his second and final term, and the field for nomination in both parties was wide open. Bush was the governor of Texas in June 1999 when he announced his candidacy for president, joining John McCain, Alan Keyes, Steve Forbes, Gary Bauer, Orrin Hatch, Elizabeth Dole, Dan Quayle, Pat Buchanan, Lamar Alexander, John Kasich, and Bob Smith.
Bush portrayed himself as a compassionate conservative, implying he was more centrist than other Republicans. He campaigned on a platform that included bringing integrity and honor back to the White House, increasing the size of the military, cutting taxes, improving education, and aiding minorities. By early 2000, the race had centered on Bush and McCain.
Bush won the Iowa caucuses, and although he was heavily favored to win the New Hampshire primary, he trailed McCain by 19 percent and lost that primary. Despite this, Bush regained momentum effectively became the front runner after the South Carolina primary, which—according to The Boston Globe—made history for his campaign's negativity. The New York Times described it as a smear campaign.
On July 25, 2000, Bush surprised some observers when he selected Dick Cheney—a former White House chief of staff, representative and secretary of defense—to be his running mate. At the time, Cheney was serving as head of Bush's vice presidential search committee. Soon after at the 2000 Republican National Convention, Bush and Cheney were officially nominated by the Republican Party.
Bush continued to campaign across the country and touted his record as Governor of Texas. During his campaign, Bush criticized his Democratic opponent, incumbent Vice President Al Gore, over gun control and taxation.
When the election returns were tallied on November 7, Bush had won 29 states, including Florida. The closeness of the Florida outcome led to a recount. The initial recount also went to Bush, but the outcome was tied up in lower courts for a month until eventually reaching the U.S. Supreme Court. On December 9, in the controversial Bush v. Gore ruling, the Court reversed a Florida Supreme Court decision that had ordered a third count, and stopped an ordered statewide hand recount based on the argument that the use of different standards among Florida's counties violated the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. The machine recount showed that Bush had won the Florida vote by a margin of 537 votes out of six million casts. Although he had received 543,895 fewer individual nationwide votes than Gore, Bush won the election, receiving 271 electoral votes to Gore's 266 (Gore had actually been awarded 267 votes by the states pledged to him plus the District of Columbia, but one D.C. elector abstained). Bush was the first person to win an American presidential election with fewer popular votes than another candidate since Benjamin Harrison in 1888.
2004 presidential candidacy
In his 2004 bid for re-election, Bush commanded broad support in the Republican Party and did not encounter a primary challenge. He appointed Ken Mehlman as campaign manager, and Karl Rove devised a political strategy. Bush and the Republican platform emphasized a strong commitment to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, support for the USA PATRIOT Act, a renewed shift in policy for constitutional amendments banning abortion and same-sex marriage, reforming Social Security to create private investment accounts, creation of an Eigentümergesellschaft ,  und die gegenüberliegenden obligatorische Kohlenstoff - Emissionen Kontrollen.  Bush forderte auch die Umsetzung eines Gastarbeiterprogramms für Einwanderer , das von Konservativen kritisiert wurde. 
The Bush campaign advertised across the U.S. against Democratic candidates, including Bush's emerging opponent, Massachusetts Senator John Kerry. Kerry and other Democrats attacked Bush on the Iraq War, and accused him of failing to stimulate the economy and job growth. The Bush campaign portrayed Kerry as a staunch liberal who would raise taxes and increase the size of government. The Bush campaign continuously criticized Kerry's seemingly contradictory statements on the war in Iraq, and argued that Kerry lacked the decisiveness and vision necessary for success in the War on Terror.
Following the resignation of CIA director George Tenet in 2004, Bush nominated Porter Goss to head the agency. The White House ordered Goss to purge agency officers who were disloyal to the administration. After Goss' appointment, many of the CIA's senior agents were fired or quit. The CIA has been accused of deliberately leaking classified information to undermine the 2004 election.
In the election, Bush carried 31 of 50 states, receiving 286 electoral votes. He won an absolute majority of the popular vote (50.7 percent to his opponent's 48.3 percent). Bush's father George H.W. Bush was the previous president who won an absolute majority of the popular vote; he accomplished that feat in the 1988 election. Additionally, it was the first time since Herbert Hoover's election in 1928 that a Republican president was elected alongside re-elected Republican majorities in both Houses of Congress.
Bush had originally outlined an ambitious domestic agenda, but his priorities were significantly altered following the September 11 attacks. Wars were waged in Afghanistan and Iraq, and there were significant domestic debates regarding immigration, healthcare, Social Security, economic policy, and treatment of terrorist detainees. Over an eight-year period, Bush's once-high approval ratings steadily declined, while his disapproval numbers increased significantly. In 2007, the United States entered the longest post-World War II recession.
Bush took office during a period of economic recession in the wake of the bursting of the dot-com bubble. The terrorist attacks also impacted the economy.
His administration increased federal government spending from $1.789 trillion to $2.983 trillion (60 percent), while revenues increased from $2.025 trillion to $2.524 trillion (from 2000 to 2008). Individual income tax revenues increased by 14 percent, corporate tax revenues by 50 percent, and customs and duties by 40 percent. Discretionary defense spending was increased by 107 percent, discretionary domestic spending by 62 percent, Medicare spending by 131 percent, social security by 51 percent, and income security spending by 130 percent. Cyclically adjusted, revenues rose by 35 percent and spending by 65 percent. The increase in spending was more than under any predecessor since Lyndon B. Johnson. The number of economic regulation governmental workers increased by 91,196.
The surplus in fiscal year 2000 was $237 billion—the third consecutive surplus and the largest surplus ever. In 2001, Bush's budget estimated that there would be a $5.6 trillion surplus over the next ten years. Facing congressional opposition, Bush held townhall style meetings across the U.S. in order to increase public support for his plan for a $1.35 trillion tax cut program—one of the largest tax cuts in U.S. history. Bush argued that unspent government funds should be returned to taxpayers, saying "the surplus is not the government's money. The surplus is the people's money." Federal Reserve chairman Alan Greenspan warned of a recession and Bush stated that a tax cut would stimulate the economy and create jobs. Treasury Secretary Paul H. O'Neill, opposed some of the tax cuts on the basis that they would contribute to budget deficits and undermine Social Security. O'Neill disputes the claim, made in Bush's book Decision Points, that he never openly disagreed with him on planned tax cuts. By 2003, the economy showed signs of improvement, though job growth remained stagnant. Another tax cut was passed that year.
Between 2001 and 2008, GDP grew at an average annual rate of 2.125 percent, less than for past business cycles. Bush entered office with the Dow Jones Industrial Average at 10,587, and the average peaked in October 2007 at over 14,000. When Bush left office, the average was at 7,949, one of the lowest levels of his presidency. Only four other U.S. presidents have left office with the stock market lower than when they began.
Unemployment originally rose from 4.2 percent in January 2001 to 6.3 percent in June 2003, but subsequently dropped to 4.5 percent in July 2007. Adjusted for inflation, median household income dropped by $1,175 between 2000 and 2007, while Professor Ken Homa of Georgetown University has noted that "Median real after-tax household income went up two percent". The poverty rate increased from 11.3 percent in 2000 to 12.3 percent in 2006 after peaking at 12.7 percent in 2004. By October 2008, due to increases in spending,:273 the national debt had risen to $11.3 trillion, an increase of over 100 percent from 2000 when the debt was only $5.6 trillion. Most debt was accumulated as a result of what became known as the "Bush tax cuts" and increased national security spending. In March 2006, then-Senator Barack Obama said when he voted against raising the debt ceiling: "The fact that we are here today to debate raising America's debt limit is a sign of leadership failure." By the end of Bush's presidency, unemployment climbed to 7.2 percent.
In December 2007, the United States entered the longest post–World War II recession, caused by a housing market correction, a subprime mortgage crisis, soaring oil prices, and other factors. In February 2008, 63,000 jobs were lost, a five-year record, and in November, over 500,000 jobs were lost, which marked the largest loss of jobs in the United States in 34 years. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that in the last four months of 2008, 1.9 million jobs were lost. By the end of 2008, the U.S. had lost 2.6 million jobs.
Um die Situation zu verbessern, unterzeichnete Bush ein Konjunkturpaket in Höhe von 170 Milliarden US-Dollar, mit dem die wirtschaftliche Situation verbessert werden soll, indem Steuererleichterungsschecks an viele Amerikaner gesendet und Steuervergünstigungen für Unternehmen in Schwierigkeiten gewährt werden. Die Bush - Regierung für eine deutlich stärkere Regulierung von schiebt Fannie Mae und Freddie Mac im Jahr 2003,  und nach zwei Jahren, gingen die Verordnungen das Haus aber im Senat gestorben. Viele republikanische Senatoren sowie einflussreiche Mitglieder der Bush-Administration befürchteten, dass die durch diese Vorschriften geschaffene Agentur lediglich die riskanten Praktiken des Privatsektors nachahmen würde.    Im September 2008 verschärfte sich die Krise erheblich beginning with the government takeover of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac followed by the collapse of Lehman Brothers and a federal bailout of American International Group for $85 billion.
Many economists and world governments determined that the situation had become the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression. Additional regulation over the housing market would have been beneficial, according to former Federal Reserve chairman Alan Greenspan. Bush, meanwhile, proposed a financial rescue plan to buy back a large portion of the U.S. mortgage market. Vince Reinhardt, a former Federal Reserve economist now at the American Enterprise Institute, said "it would have helped for the Bush administration to empower the folks at Treasury and the Federal Reserve and the comptroller of the currency and the FDIC to look at these issues more closely", and additionally, that it would have helped "for Congress to have held hearings".
Education and public health
Bush undertook many educational agendas, such as increasing the funding for the National Science Foundation and National Institutes of Health in his first years of office and creating education programs to strengthen the grounding in science and mathematics for American high school students. Funding for the NIH was cut in 2006, the first such cut in 36 years, due to rising inflation.
One of the administration's early major initiatives was the No Child Left Behind Act, which aimed to measure and close the gap between rich and poor student performance, provide options to parents with students in low-performing schools, and target more federal funding to low-income schools. This landmark education initiative passed with broad bipartisan support, including that of Senator Ted Kennedy of Massachusetts. It was signed into law by Bush in early 2002. Many contend that the initiative has been successful, as cited by the fact that students in the U.S. have performed significantly better on state reading and math tests since Bush signed "No Child Left Behind" into law. Critics[who?] argue that it is underfunded[better source needed] and that NCLBA's focus on "high-stakes testing" and quantitative outcomes is counterproductive.
On November 1, 2005, Bush announced a National Strategy for Pandemic Influenza to prepare the United States for a flu pandemic, which culminated in an implementation plan published by the Homeland Security Council in May 2006.
After being re-elected, Bush signed into law a Medicare drug benefit program that, according to Jan Crawford, resulted in "the greatest expansion in America's welfare state in forty years" – the bill's costs approached $7 trillion.:274 In 2007, Bush opposed and vetoed State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) legislation, which was added by the Democrats onto a war funding bill and passed by Congress. The SCHIP legislation would have significantly expanded federally funded health care benefits and plans to children of some low-income families from about six million to ten million children. It was to be funded by an increase in the cigarette tax. Bush viewed the legislation as a move toward socialized health care, and asserted that the program could benefit families making as much as $83,000 per year who did not need the help.
On May 21, 2008, Bush signed into law the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA). The bill aimed to protect Americans against health insurance and employment discrimination based on a person's genetic information. The issue had been debated for 13 years before it finally became law. The measure is designed to protect citizens without hindering genetic research.
Social services and Social Security
Following Republican efforts to pass the Medicare Act of 2003, Bush signed the bill, which included major changes to the Medicare program by providing beneficiaries with some assistance in paying for prescription drugs, while relying on private insurance for the delivery of benefits. The retired persons lobby group AARP worked with the Bush Administration on the program and gave their endorsement. Bush said the law, estimated to cost $400 billion over the first ten years, would give the elderly "better choices and more control over their health care".
Bush began his second term by outlining a major initiative to "reform" Social Security, which was facing record deficit projections beginning in 2005. Bush made it the centerpiece of his domestic agenda despite opposition from some in the U.S. Congress. In his 2005 State of the Union Address, Bush discussed the potential impending bankruptcy of the program and outlined his new program, which included partial privatization of the system, personal Social Security accounts, and options to permit Americans to divert a portion of their Social Security tax (FICA) into secured investments. Democrats opposed the proposal to partially privatize the system.
Bush embarked on a 60-day national tour, campaigning for his initiative in media events known as "Conversations on Social Security" in an attempt to gain public support. Nevertheless, public support for the proposal declined, and the House Republican leadership decided not to put Social Security reform on the priority list for the remainder of their 2005 legislative agenda. The proposal's legislative prospects were further diminished by autumn 2005 due to political fallout from the response to Hurricane Katrina. After the Democrats gained control of both houses of Congress in the 2006 midterm elections, there was no prospect of further congressional action on the Bush proposal for the remainder of his term in office.
Upon taking office in 2001, Bush stated his opposition to the Kyoto Protocol, an amendment to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change which seeks to impose mandatory targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions, citing that the treaty exempted 80 percent of the world's population and would have cost tens of billions of dollars per year. He also cited that the Senate had voted 95–0 in 1997 on a resolution expressing its disapproval of the protocol.
In May 2001, Bush signed an executive order to create an interagency task force to streamline energy projects, and later signed two other executive orders to tackle environmental issues.
In 2002, Bush announced the Clear Skies Act of 2003, which aimed at amending the Clean Air Act to reduce air pollution through the use of emissions trading programs. Many experts argued that this legislation would have weakened the original legislation by allowing higher emission rates of pollutants than were previously legal. The initiative was introduced to Congress, but failed to make it out of committee.
Later in 2006, Bush declared the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands a national monument, creating the largest marine reserve to date. The Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument comprises 84 million acres (340,000 km2) and is home to 7,000 species of fish, birds, and other marine animals, many of which are specific to only those islands. The move was hailed by conservationists for "its foresight and leadership in protecting this incredible area".
Bush has said he believes that global warming is real and has noted that it is a serious problem, but he asserted there is a "debate over whether it's man-made or naturally caused". The Bush Administration's stance on global warming remained controversial in the scientific and environmental communities. Critics have alleged that the administration misinformed the public and did not do enough to reduce carbon emissions and deter global warming.
In his 2006 State of the Union Address, Bush declared, "America is addicted to oil" and announced his Advanced Energy Initiative to increase energy development research.
In seiner Rede zur Lage der Union 2007 erneuerte Bush sein Versprechen, auf eine geringere Abhängigkeit von ausländischem Öl hinzuarbeiten, indem er den Verbrauch fossiler Brennstoffe senkte und die Produktion alternativer Brennstoffe erhöhte .  Angesichts der hohen Benzinpreise im Jahr 2008 hob Bush ein Verbot von Offshore-Bohrungen auf .  Der Schritt war jedoch weitgehend symbolisch, da es noch ein Bundesgesetz gab, das Offshore-Bohrungen verbot. Bush sagte: "Dies bedeutet, dass das einzige, was zwischen dem amerikanischen Volk und diesen riesigen Ölreserven steht, die Aktion des US-Kongresses ist."  Bush had said in June 2008, "In the long run, the solution is to reduce demand for oil by promoting alternative energy technologies. My administration has worked with Congress to invest in gas-saving technologies like advanced batteries and hydrogen fuel cells ... In the short run, the American economy will continue to rely largely on oil. And that means we need to increase supply, especially here at home. So my administration has repeatedly called on Congress to expand domestic oil production."
In his 2008 State of the Union Address, Bush announced that the U.S. would commit $2 billion over the next three years to a new international fund to promote clean energy technologies and fight climate change, saying, "Along with contributions from other countries, this fund will increase and accelerate the deployment of all forms of cleaner, more efficient technologies in developing nations like India and China, and help leverage substantial private-sector capital by making clean energy projects more financially attractive." He also announced plans to reaffirm the United States' commitment to work with major economies, and, through the UN, to complete an international agreement that will slow, stop, and eventually reverse the growth of greenhouse gases; he stated, "This agreement will be effective only if it includes commitments by every major economy and gives none a free ride."
Stem cell research and first veto
Federal funding for medical research involving the creation or destruction of human embryos through the Department of Health and Human Services and the National Institutes of Health has been forbidden by law since the passage of the Dickey-Wicker Amendment in 1995. Bush has said he supports adult stem cell research and has supported federal legislation that finances adult stem cell research. However, Bush did not support embryonic stem cell research. On August 9, 2001, Bush signed an executive order lifting the ban on federal funding for the 71 existing "lines" of stem cells, but the ability of these existing lines to provide an adequate medium for testing has been questioned. Testing can be done on only 12 of the original lines, and all approved lines have been cultured in contact with mouse cells, which creates safety issues that complicate development and approval of therapies from these lines. On July 19, 2006, Bush used his veto power for the first time in his presidency to veto the Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act. The bill would have repealed the Dickey-Wicker Amendment, thereby permitting federal money to be used for research where stem cells are derived from the destruction of an embryo.
Nearly eight million immigrants came to the United States from 2000 to 2005, more than in any other five-year period in the nation's history. Almost half entered illegally. In 2006, Bush urged Congress to allow more than 12 million illegal immigrants to work in the United States with the creation of a "temporary guest-worker program". Bush also urged Congress to provide additional funds for border security and committed to deploying 6,000 National Guard troops to the Mexico–United States border. From May to June 2007, Bush strongly supported the Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act of 2007, which was written by a bipartisan group of Senators with the active participation of the Bush administration. The bill envisioned a legalization program for illegal immigrants, with an eventual path to citizenship; establishing a guest worker program; a series of border and work site enforcement measures; a reform of the green card application process and the introduction of a point-based "merit" system for green cards; elimination of "chain migration" and of the Diversity Immigrant Visa; and other measures. Bush argued that the lack of legal status denies the protections of U.S. laws to millions of people who face dangers of poverty and exploitation, and penalizes employers despite a demand for immigrant labor. Bush contended that the proposed bill did not amount to amnesty.
A heated public debate followed, which resulted in a substantial rift within the Republican Party, most conservatives opposed it because of its legalization or amnesty provisions. The bill was eventually defeated in the Senate on June 28, 2007, when a cloture motion failed on a 46–53 vote. Bush expressed disappointment upon the defeat of one of his signature domestic initiatives. The Bush administration later proposed a series of immigration enforcement measures that do not require a change in law.
On September 19, 2010, former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said that Bush offered to accept 100,000 Palestinian refugees as American citizens if a permanent settlement had been reached between Israel and the Palestinian Authority.
Hurricane Katrina struck early in Bush's second term and was one of the most damaging natural disasters in U.S. history. Katrina formed in late August during the 2005 Atlantic hurricane season and devastated much of the north-central Gulf Coast of the United States, particularly New Orleans.
Bush declared a state of emergency in Louisiana on August 27 and in Mississippi and Alabama the following day. He authorized the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to manage the disaster, but his announcement failed to spur these agencies to action. The eye of the hurricane made landfall on August 29, and New Orleans began to flood due to levee breaches; later that day, Bush declared a major disaster in Louisiana, officially authorizing FEMA to start using federal funds to assist in the recovery effort.
On August 30, DHS Secretary Michael Chertoff declared it "an incident of national significance", triggering the first use of the newly created National Response Plan. Three days later, on September 2, National Guard troops first entered the city of New Orleans. The same day, Bush toured parts of Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama and declared that the success of the recovery effort up to that point was "not enough".
As the disaster in New Orleans intensified, critics charged that Bush was misrepresenting his administration's role in what they saw as a flawed response. Leaders attacked Bush for having appointed apparently incompetent leaders to positions of power at FEMA, notably Michael D. Brown; it was also argued that the federal response was limited as a result of the Iraq War and Bush himself did not act upon warnings of floods. Bush responded to mounting criticism by accepting full responsibility for the federal government's failures in its handling of the emergency. It has been argued that with Katrina, Bush passed a political tipping point from which he would not recover.
Midterm dismissal of U.S. attorneys
During Bush's second term, a controversy arose over the Justice Department's midterm dismissal of seven United States Attorneys. The White House maintained that they were fired for poor performance. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales later resigned over the issue, along with other senior members of the Justice Department. The House Judiciary Committee issued subpoenas for advisers Harriet Miers and Josh Bolten to testify regarding this matter, but Bush directed Miers and Bolten to not comply with those subpoenas, invoking his right of executive privilege. Bush maintained that all his advisers were protected under a broad executive privilege protection to receive candid advice. The Justice Department determined that the President's order was legal.
Although Congressional investigations focused on whether the Justice Department and the White House were using the U.S. Attorney positions for political advantage, no official findings have been released. On March 10, 2008, the Congress filed a federal lawsuit to enforce their issued subpoenas. On July 31, 2008, a United States district court judge ruled that Bush's top advisers were not immune from Congressional subpoenas.
In all, twelve Justice Department officials resigned rather than testify under oath before Congress. They included Attorney General Alberto Gonzales and his chief of staff Kyle Sampson, Gonzales' liaison to the White House Monica Goodling, aide to the president Karl Rove and his senior aide Sara Taylor. In addition, legal counsel to the president Harriet Miers and deputy chief of staff to the president Joshua Bolten were both found in contempt of Congress.
In 2010, the Justice Department investigator concluded that though political considerations did play a part in as many as four of the attorney firings, the firings were "inappropriately political", but not criminal. According to the prosecutors, there was insufficient evidence to pursue prosecution for any criminal offense.
During his presidential campaign, Bush's foreign policy platform included support for stronger economic and political relationship with Latin America, especially Mexico, and a reduction of involvement in "nation-building" and other small-scale military engagements. The administration pursued a national missile defense. Bush was an advocate of China's entry into the World Trade Organization.
After the September 11 attacks, Bush launched the War on Terror, in which the United States military and a small international coalition invaded Afghanistan. In his 2002 State of the Union Address, Bush referred to an "axis of evil" consisting of Iraq, Iran and North Korea. In 2003, Bush then launched the invasion of Iraq, searching for weapons of mass destruction, which he described as being part of the War on Terrorism. Those invasions led to the toppling of the Taliban regime in Afghanistan and the removal of Saddam Hussein from power in Iraq.
Bush began his second term with an emphasis on improving strained relations with European nations. He appointed long-time adviser Karen Hughes to oversee a global public relations campaign. Bush lauded the pro-democracy struggles in Georgia and Ukraine.
In March 2006, Bush reversed decades of U.S. policy when he visited India in a trip focused particularly on areas of nuclear energy, counter-terrorism co-operation; and discussions that would eventually lead to the India–United States Civil Nuclear Agreement. This was in stark contrast to the stance taken by his predecessor, Bill Clinton, whose approach and response to India after the 1998 nuclear tests has been characterized as "sanctions and hectoring".
Midway through Bush's second term, questions arose whether Bush was retreating from his freedom and democracy agenda, which was highlighted in policy changes toward some oil-rich former Soviet republics in central Asia.
In an address before both Houses of Congress on September 20, 2001, Bush thanked the nations of the world for their support following the September 11 attacks. He specifically thanked UK Prime Minister Tony Blair for traveling to Washington to show "unity of purpose with America", and said "America has no truer friend than Great Britain."
September 11 attacks
The September 11 terrorist attacks were a major turning point in Bush's presidency. That evening, he addressed the nation from the Oval Office, promising a strong response to the attacks. He also emphasized the need for the nation to come together and comfort the families of the victims. Three days after the attacks, Bush visited Ground Zero and met with Mayor Rudy Giuliani, firefighters, police officers, and volunteers. To much applause, Bush addressed the gathering via a megaphone while standing in a heap of rubble: "I can hear you. The rest of the world hears you. And the people who knocked these buildings down will hear all of us soon."
President Bush Declares 'Freedom at War with Fear', September 20, 2001
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In a September 20 speech, Bush condemned Osama bin Laden and his organization Al-Qaeda, and issued an ultimatum to the Taliban regime in Afghanistan, where bin Laden was operating, to "hand over the terrorists, or ... share in their fate".
War on Terrorism
After September 11, Bush announced a global War on Terror. The Afghan Taliban regime was not forthcoming with Osama bin Laden, so Bush ordered the invasion of Afghanistan to overthrow the Taliban regime. In his January 29, 2002 State of the Union Address, he asserted that an "axis of evil" consisting of North Korea, Iran, and Iraq was "arming to threaten the peace of the world" and "pose[d] a grave and growing danger". The Bush Administration asserted both a right and the intention to wage preemptive war, or preventive war. This became the basis for the Bush Doctrine which weakened the unprecedented levels of international and domestic support for the United States which had followed the September 11 attacks.
Dissent and criticism of Bush's leadership in the War on Terror increased as the war in Iraq continued. In 2006, a National Intelligence Estimate concluded that the Iraq War had become the "cause célèbre for jihadists".
On October 7, 2001, U.S. and British forces initiated bombing campaigns that led to the arrival of Northern Alliance troops in Kabul on November 13. The main goals of the war were to defeat the Taliban, drive al-Qaeda out of Afghanistan, and capture key al-Qaeda leaders. In December 2001, the Pentagon reported that the Taliban had been defeated, but cautioned that the war would go on to continue weakening Taliban and al-Qaeda leaders. Later that month the UN had installed the Afghan Transitional Administration chaired by Hamid Karzai.
Efforts to kill or capture al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden failed as he escaped a battle in December 2001 in the mountainous region of Tora Bora, which the Bush Administration later acknowledged to have resulted from a failure to commit enough U.S. ground troops. It was not until May 2011, two years after Bush left office, that bin Laden was killed by U.S. forces under the Obama administration. Bin Laden's successor, Ayman al-Zawahiri, remains at large.
Despite the initial success in driving the Taliban from power in Kabul, by early 2003 the Taliban was regrouping, amassing new funds and recruits. The 2005 failure of Operation Red Wings showed that the Taliban had returned. In 2006, the Taliban insurgency appeared larger, fiercer and better organized than expected, with large-scale allied offensives such as Operation Mountain Thrust attaining limited success. As a result, Bush commissioned 3,500 additional troops to the country in March 2007.
Beginning with his January 29, 2002 State of the Union address, Bush began publicly focusing attention on Iraq, which he labeled as part of an "axis of evil" allied with terrorists and posing "a grave and growing danger" to U.S. interests through possession of weapons of mass destruction.
In the latter half of 2002, CIA reports contained assertions of Saddam Hussein's intent of reconstituting nuclear weapons programs, not properly accounting for Iraqi biological and chemical weapons, and that some Iraqi missiles had a range greater than allowed by the UN sanctions. Contentions that the Bush Administration manipulated or exaggerated the threat and evidence of Iraq's weapons of mass destruction capabilities would eventually become a major point of criticism for the president.
In late 2002 and early 2003, Bush urged the United Nations to enforce Iraqi disarmament mandates, precipitating a diplomatic crisis. In November 2002, Hans Blix and Mohamed ElBaradei led UN weapons inspectors in Iraq, but were advised by the U.S. to depart the country four days prior to the U.S. invasion, despite their requests for more time to complete their tasks. The U.S. initially sought a UN Security Council resolution authorizing the use of military force but dropped the bid for UN approval due to vigorous opposition from several countries. The Bush administration's claim that the Iraq War was part of the War on Terror had been questioned and contested by political analysts.
More than 20 nations (most notably the United Kingdom), designated the "coalition of the willing" joined the United States in invading Iraq. They launched the invasion on March 20, 2003. The Iraqi military was quickly defeated. The capital, Baghdad, fell on April 9, 2003. On May 1, Bush declared the end of major combat operations in Iraq. The initial success of U.S. operations increased his popularity, but the U.S. and allied forces faced a growing insurgency led by sectarian groups; Bush's "Mission Accomplished" speech was later criticized as premature. From 2004 until 2007, the situation in Iraq deteriorated further, with some observers arguing that there was a full-scale civil war in Iraq. Bush's policies met with criticism, including demands domestically to set a timetable to withdraw troops from Iraq. The 2006 report of the bipartisan Iraq Study Group, led by James Baker, concluded that the situation in Iraq was "grave and deteriorating". While Bush admitted there were strategic mistakes made in regards to the stability of Iraq, he maintained he would not change the overall Iraq strategy. According to Iraq Body Count, some 251,000 Iraqis have been killed in the civil war following the U.S.-led invasion, including at least 163,841 civilians.
In January 2005, free, democratic elections were held in Iraq for the first time in 50 years. According to Iraqi National Security Advisor Mowaffak al-Rubaie, "This is the greatest day in the history of this country." Bush praised the event as well, saying that the Iraqis "have taken rightful control of their country's destiny". This led to the election of Jalal Talabani as president and Nouri al-Maliki as Prime Minister of Iraq. A referendum to approve a constitution in Iraq was held in October 2005, supported by most Shiites and many Kurds.
On January 10, 2007, Bush announced a surge of 21,500 more troops for Iraq, as well as a job program for Iraqis, more reconstruction proposals, and $1.2 billion (equivalent to $1.5 billion in 2019) for these programs. On May 1, 2007, Bush used his second-ever veto to reject a bill setting a deadline for the withdrawal of U.S. troops, saying the debate over the conflict was "understandable" but insisting that a continued U.S. presence there was crucial.
Im März 2008 lobte Bush die "mutige Entscheidung" der irakischen Regierung, die Schlacht von Basra gegen die Mahdi-Armee zu starten , und nannte sie "einen entscheidenden Moment in der Geschichte eines freien Irak".  Er sagte, er werde die Empfehlungen seines kommandierenden Generals David Petraeus und Botschafter Ryan Crocker sorgfältig abwägen, wie nach dem Ende des militärischen Aufbaus im Sommer 2008 vorzugehen sei. Er lobte auch die gesetzgeberischen Errungenschaften der Iraker, einschließlich eines Rentengesetzes , ein überarbeitetes Gesetz zur Entbaathifizierung, ein neues Budget, ein Amnestiegesetz und eine Maßnahme der Provinzmächte, die die Voraussetzungen für die irakischen Wahlen schaffen .  By July 2008, American troop deaths had reached their lowest number since the war began, and due to increased stability in Iraq, Bush announced the withdrawal of additional American forces. During his last visit in Iraq in December 2008, Iraqi journalist Muntadhar al-Zaidi threw both of his shoes to Bush amid official press conference with Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki. Al-Zaidi yelled the strikes on Bush as "farewell kiss" and "for the widows and orphans and all those killed in Iraq."
In March 2010, Center for Public Integrity released a report that President Bush's administration had made more than 900 false pretenses in a two-year period about alleged threat of Iraq against the United States, as his rationale to engage war in Iraq. Senior war crimes prosecutor Benjamin B. Ferencz has suggested that Bush should be tried in the International Criminal Court for '269 war crime charges' related to the Iraq War.
Following the terrorist attacks of September 11, Bush issued an executive order that authorized the President's Surveillance Program. The new directive allowed the National Security Agency to monitor communications between suspected terrorists outside the U.S. and parties within the U.S. without obtaining a warrant, which previously had been required by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. As of 2009[update], the other provisions of the program remained highly classified. Once the Department of Justice Office of Legal Counsel questioned its original legal opinion that FISA did not apply in a time of war, the program was subsequently re-authorized by the President on the basis that the warrant requirements of FISA were implicitly superseded by the subsequent passage of the Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Terrorists. The program proved to be controversial; critics of the administration and organizations such as the American Bar Association argued that it was illegal. In August 2006, a U.S. district court judge ruled that the NSA electronic surveillance program was unconstitutional, but on July 6, 2007, that ruling was vacated by the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit on the grounds that the plaintiffs lacked standing. On January 17, 2007, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales informed U.S. Senate leaders that the program would not be reauthorized by the President, but would be subjected to judicial oversight. Later in 2007, the NSA launched a replacement for the program, referred to as PRISM, which was subject to the oversight of the United States Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court. This program was not publicly revealed until reports by The Washington Post and The Guardian emerged in June 2013.
Bush authorized the CIA to use waterboarding and several other "enhanced interrogation techniques" that several critics, including Barack Obama, would label as torture. Between 2002 and 2003, the CIA considered certain enhanced interrogation techniques, such as waterboarding, to be legal based on secret Justice Department legal opinions arguing that terror detainees were not protected by the Geneva Conventions' ban on torture, which was described as "an unconstitutional infringement of the President's authority to conduct war".Die CIA hatte die Technik bei bestimmten wichtigen Terrorverdächtigen angewendet, die ihr im Bybee Memo des Generalstaatsanwalts unterstellt waren, obwohl dieses Memo später zurückgezogen wurde.  Obwohl dies in den US Army Field Manuals nicht erlaubt ist, in denen behauptet wird, "dass harte Befragungstaktiken unzuverlässige Informationen hervorrufen",  glaubte die Bush-Regierung, dass diese verstärkten Befragungen "kritische Informationen lieferten", um das Leben der Amerikaner zu bewahren.  Kritiker wie der ehemalige CIA-Offizier Bob Baer haben erklärt, dass Informationen verdächtig seien: "Sie können jeden dazu bringen, etwas zu gestehen, wenn die Folter schlimm genug ist." 
On October 17, 2006, Bush signed the Military Commissions Act of 2006 into law. The new rule was enacted in the wake of the Supreme Court's decision in Hamdan v. Rumsfeld, 548 U.S. 557 (2006), which allowed the U.S. government to prosecute unlawful enemy combatants by military commission rather than a standard trial. The law also denied the detainees access to habeas corpus and barred the torture of prisoners. The provision of the law allowed the president to determine what constitutes "torture".
On March 8, 2008, Bush vetoed H.R. 2082, a bill that would have expanded congressional oversight over the intelligence community and banned the use of waterboarding as well as other forms of interrogation not permitted under the United States Army Field Manual on Human Intelligence Collector Operations, saying that "the bill Congress sent me would take away one of the most valuable tools in the War on Terror". In April 2009, the ACLU sued and won release of the secret memos that had authorized the Bush administration's interrogation tactics. One memo detailed specific interrogation tactics including a footnote that described waterboarding as torture as well as that the form of waterboarding used by the CIA was far more intense than authorized by the Justice Department.
North Korea condemnation
Bush publicly condemned Kim Jong-il of North Korea and identified North Korea as one of three states in an "axis of evil". He said that "the United States of America will not permit the world's most dangerous regimes to threaten us with the world's most destructive weapons." Within months, "both countries had walked away from their respective commitments under the U.S.–DPRK Agreed Framework of October 1994." North Korea's October 9, 2006, detonation of a nuclear device further complicated Bush's foreign policy, which centered for both terms of his presidency on "[preventing] the terrorists and regimes who seek chemical, biological, or nuclear weapons from threatening the United States and the world". Bush condemned North Korea's position, reaffirmed his commitment to "a nuclear-free Korean Peninsula", and said that "transfer of nuclear weapons or material by North Korea to states or non-state entities would be considered a grave threat to the United States", for which North Korea would be held accountable. On May 7, 2007, North Korea agreed to shut down its nuclear reactors immediately pending the release of frozen funds held in a foreign bank account. This was a result of a series of three-way talks initiated by the United States and including China. On September 2, 2007, North Korea agreed to disclose and dismantle all its nuclear programs by the end of 2007. By May 2009, North Korea had restarted its nuclear program and threatened to attack South Korea.
On June 22, 2010, "While South Korea prospers, the people of North Korea have suffered profoundly," he said, adding that communism had resulted in dire poverty, mass starvation and brutal suppression. "In recent years," he went on to say, "the suffering has been compounded by the leader who wasted North Korea's precious few resources on personal luxuries and nuclear weapons programs."
Bush expanded economic sanctions on Syria. In 2003, Bush signed the Syria Accountability Act, which expanded sanctions on Syria. In early 2007, the Treasury Department, acting on a June 2005 executive order, froze American bank accounts of Syria's Higher Institute of Applied Science and Technology, Electronics Institute, and National Standards and Calibration Laboratory. Bush's order prohibits Americans from doing business with these institutions suspected of helping spread weapons of mass destruction and being supportive of terrorism. Under separate executive orders signed by Bush in 2004 and later 2007, the Treasury Department froze the assets of two Lebanese and two Syrians, accusing them of activities to "undermine the legitimate political process in Lebanon" in November 2007. Those designated included: Assaad Halim Hardan, a member of Lebanon's parliament and current leader of the Syrian Socialist National Party; Wi'am Wahhab, a former member of Lebanon's government (Minister of the Environment) under Prime Minister Omar Karami (2004–2005); Hafiz Makhluf, a colonel and senior official in the Syrian General Intelligence Directorate and a cousin of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad; and Muhammad Nasif Khayrbik, identified as a close adviser to Assad.
In the State of the Union address in January 2003, Bush outlined a five-year strategy for global emergency AIDS relief, the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR). Bush announced $15 billion for this effort which directly supported life-saving antiretroviral treatment for more than 3.2 million men, women and children worldwide. The U.S. government had spent some $44 billion on the project since 2003 (a figure that includes $7 billion contributed to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria, a multilateral organization), which saved an estimated five million lives. According to The New York Times correspondent Peter Baker, "Bush did more to stop AIDS and more to help Africa than any president before or since."
On May 10, 2005, Vladimir Arutyunian, a native Georgian who was born to a family of ethnic Armenians, threw a live hand grenade toward a podium where Bush was speaking at Freedom Square in Tbilisi, Georgia. Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili was seated nearby. It landed in the crowd about 65 feet (20 m) from the podium after hitting a girl, but it did not detonate. Arutyunian was arrested in July 2005, confessed, was convicted and was given a life sentence in January 2006.
Bush signed the Strategic Offensive Reductions Treaty with Russia. He withdrew U.S. support for several international agreements, including the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty (ABM) with Russia.
Bush emphasized a careful approach to the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians; he denounced Palestine Liberation Organization leader Yasser Arafat for his support of violence, but sponsored dialogues between Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and Palestinian National Authority President Mahmoud Abbas. Bush supported Sharon's unilateral disengagement plan, and lauded the democratic elections held in Palestine after Arafat's death.
In July 2001, Bush visited Pope John Paul II at Castel Gandolfo.
Bush drückte auch seine Unterstützung für die Verteidigung Taiwans durch die USA aus, nachdem China im April 2001 wegen des Vorfalls auf der Insel Hainan in Konflikt geraten war , als ein Überwachungsflugzeug der EP-3E Aries II mit einem Luftwaffenjet der Volksbefreiungsarmee kollidierte und zur Inhaftierung von US-Personal. Von 2003 bis 2004 genehmigte Bush eine militärische Intervention der USA in Haiti und Liberia, um die Interessen der USA zu schützen. Bush verurteilte die Milizangriffe in Darfur und prangerte die Morde im Sudan als Völkermord an.  Bush sagte, eine internationale friedenserhaltende Präsenz sei in Darfur von entscheidender Bedeutung, lehnte es jedoch ab, die Situation an den Internationalen Strafgerichtshof zu verweisen .
On June 10, 2007, Bush met with Albanian Prime Minister Sali Berisha and became the first president to visit Albania. Bush has voiced his support for the independence of Kosovo. Bush opposed South Ossetia's independence. On August 15, 2008, Bush said of Russia's invasion of the country of Georgia: "Bullying and intimidation are not acceptable ways to conduct foreign policy in the 21st century."
Bush opened the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, Utah. Departing from previous practice, he stood among a group of U.S. athletes rather than from a ceremonial stand or box, saying: "On behalf of a proud, determined, and grateful nation, I declare open the Games of Salt Lake City, celebrating the Olympic Winter Games." In 2008, in the course of a good-will trip to Asia, he attended the Summer Olympics in Beijing.
Bush twice invoked Section 3 of the Twenty-fifth Amendment, which allows a president to temporarily transfer the powers and duties of his office to the vice president, who then becomes acting president. On June 29, 2002, Bush underwent a colonoscopy and invoked the provision, making Vice President Cheney the acting president. Bush was awake and resumed his presidential powers after two hours. On July 21, 2007, Bush again invoked the provision in preparation for another colonoscopy. Again, Bush resumed his presidential powers after two hours.
Am 5. September 2005, nach dem Tod von Chief Justice William Rehnquist , nominierte Bush John Roberts zum Chief Justice. Er wurde am 29. September 2005 vom Senat bestätigt.
Am 3. Oktober 2005 nominierte Bush die langjährige Beraterin des Weißen Hauses, Harriet Miers , als Nachfolgerin von Sandra Day O'Connor . Sie stieß auf starken Widerstand von beiden Parteien, die sie erwiesen schlecht vorbereitet und nicht informiert über das Gesetz,  : 278 Miers zog ich am 27. Oktober Am 31. Oktober Bush nominierte Bundesberufungsrichter Samuel Alito . Er wurde am 31. Januar 2006 bestätigt. 
In addition to his two Supreme Court appointments, Bush appointed 61 judges to the United States courts of appeals and 261 judges to the United States district courts. Each of these numbers, along with his 324 judicial appointments.
Cultural and political image
Bush's upbringing in West Texas, his accent, his vacations on his Texas ranch, and his penchant for country metaphors contribute to his folksy, American cowboy image. "I think people look at him and think John Wayne", said Piers Morgan, editor of the British Daily Mirror.
Bush has been parodied by the media, comedians, and other politicians. Detractors tended to cite linguistic errors made by Bush during his public speeches, which are colloquially referred to as Bushisms.
In contrast to his father—who was perceived as having troubles with an overarching unifying theme—Bush embraced larger visions and was seen as a man of larger ideas and associated huge risks.
Tony Blair wrote in 2010 that the caricature of Bush as being dumb is "ludicrous" and that Bush is "very smart". In an interview with Playboy, The New York Times columnist David Brooks said Bush "was 60 IQ points smarter in private than he was in public. He doesn't want anybody to think he's smarter than they are, so puts on a Texas act."
Bush began his presidency with approval ratings near 50 percent. After the September 11 attacks, Bush gained an approval rating of 90 percent, maintaining 80 to 90 percent approval for four months after the attacks. It remained over 50 percent during most of his first term and then fell to as low as 19 percent in his second term.
In 2000 and again in 2004, Time magazine named George W. Bush as its Person of the Year, a title awarded to someone who the editors believe "has done the most to influence the events of the year". In May 2004, Gallup reported that 89 percent of the Republican electorate approved of Bush. However, the support waned due mostly to a minority of Republicans' frustration with him on issues of spending, illegal immigration, and Middle Eastern affairs.
Within the United States armed forces, according to an unscientific survey, the president was strongly supported in the 2004 presidential elections. While 73 percent of military personnel said they would vote for Bush, 18 percent preferred his Democratic rival, John Kerry. According to Peter Feaver, a Duke University political scientist who has studied the political leanings of the U.S. military, members of the armed services supported Bush because they found him more likely than Kerry to complete the War in Iraq.
Bush's approval rating went below the 50 percent mark in AP-Ipsos polling in December 2004. Thereafter, his approval ratings and approval of his handling of domestic and foreign policy issues steadily dropped. After his re-election in 2004, Bush received increasingly heated criticism from across the political spectrum for his handling of the Iraq War, his response to Hurricane Katrina, and to the Abu Ghraib prisoner abuse, NSA warrantless surveillance, the Plame affair, and Guantanamo Bay detention camp controversies.
Amid this criticism, the Democratic Party regained control of Congress in the 2006 elections. Polls conducted in 2006 showed an average of 37 percent approval ratings for Bush, the lowest for any second-term president at that point in his term since Harry S. Truman in March 1951 (when Truman's approval rating was 28 percent), which contributed to what Bush called the "thumping" of the Republican Party in the 2006 mid-term elections. Throughout most of 2007, Bush's approval rating hovered in the mid-thirties; the average for his entire second term was 37 percent, according to Gallup.
By the beginning of 2008, his final year in office, Bush's approval rating had dropped to a low of just 19 percent, largely from the loss of support among Republicans. Commenting on his low poll numbers and accusations of being "the worst president," Bush would say, "I make decisions on what I think is right for the United States based upon principles. I frankly don't give a damn about the polls."
There were calls for Bush's impeachment, though most polls showed a plurality of Americans would not support such an action. The arguments offered for impeachment usually centered on the NSA warrantless surveillance controversy, the Bush administration's justification for the war in Iraq, and alleged violations of the Geneva Conventions. Representative Dennis Kucinich (D-OH), who had run against Bush during the 2004 presidential campaign, introduced 35 articles of impeachment on the floor of the House of Representatives against Bush on June 9, 2008, but Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) declared that impeachment was "off the table".
In April 2008, Bush's disapproval ratings reached the highest ever recorded for any president in the 70-year history of the Gallup poll, with 69 percent of those polled disapproving of the job Bush was doing as president and 28 percent approving—although the majority (66 percent) of Republicans still approved of his job performance.
In polls conducted in the fall, just before the 2008 election, his approval ratings remained at record lows of 19 to 20 percent, while his disapproval ratings ranged from 67 percent to as high as 75 percent. In polling conducted January 9–11, 2009, his final job approval rating by Gallup was 34 percent, which placed him on par with Jimmy Carter and Harry S. Truman, the other presidents whose final Gallup ratings measured in the low 30s (Richard Nixon's final Gallup approval rating was even lower, at 24 percent). According to a CBS News/New York Times poll conducted January 11–15, 2009, Bush's final approval rating in office was 22 percent, the lowest in American history.
Bush was criticized internationally and targeted by the global anti-war and anti-globalization movements for his administration's foreign policy. Views of him within the international community—even in France, a close ally of the United States—were more negative than those of most previous American presidents.
Bush was described as having especially close personal relationships with Tony Blair of the United Kingdom and Vicente Fox of Mexico, although formal relations were sometimes strained. Other leaders, such as Hamid Karzai of Afghanistan, Yoweri Museveni of Uganda, José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero of Spain, and Hugo Chávez of Venezuela, openly criticized the president. Later in Bush's presidency, tensions arose between him and Vladimir Putin, which led to a cooling of their relationship.
In 2006, most respondents in 18 of 21 countries surveyed around the world were found to hold an unfavorable opinion of Bush. Respondents indicated that they judged his administration as negative for world security. In 2007, the Pew Global Attitudes Project reported that during the Bush presidency, attitudes towards the United States, and towards Americans, became less favorable around the world. The Pew Research Center's 2007 Global Attitudes poll found that in only nine countries of 47 did most respondents express "a lot of confidence" or "some confidence" in Bush: Ethiopia, Ghana, India, Israel, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Mali, Nigeria, and Uganda. A March 2007 survey of Arab opinion conducted by Zogby International and the University of Maryland found that Bush was the most disliked leader in the Arab world.
During a June 2007 visit to the predominantly Muslim Albania, Bush was greeted enthusiastically. Albania has a population of 2.8 million, has troops in both Iraq and Afghanistan, and the country's government is highly supportive of American foreign policy. A huge image of the President was hung in the middle of the capital city of Tirana flanked by Albanian and American flags while a local street was named after him. A shirt-sleeved statue of Bush was unveiled in Fushë-Krujë, a few kilometers northwest of Tirana. The Bush administration's support for the independence of Albanian-majority Kosovo, while endearing him to the Albanians, has troubled U.S. relations with Serbia, leading to the February 2008 torching of the U.S. embassy in Belgrade.
Acknowledgments and dedications
On May 7, 2005, during an official state visit to Latvia, Bush was awarded the Order of the Three Stars presented to him by President Vaira Vīķe-Freiberga. A few places outside the United States bear Bush's name. In 2005, the Tbilisi City Council voted to rename a street in honor of the U.S. president. Previously known as Melaani Drive, the street links the Georgian capital's airport with the city center and was used by Bush's motorcade during his visit four months earlier. A street in Tirana, formerly known as Rruga Punëtorët e Rilindjes, situated directly outside the Albanian Parliament, was renamed after Bush a few days before he made the first-ever visit by an American president to Albania in June 2007. In Jerusalem, a small plaza with a monument bearing his name is also dedicated to Bush.
In 2012, Estonian President Toomas Hendrik Ilves awarded Bush the Order of the Cross of Terra Mariana for his work in expanding NATO.
Two elementary schools are named after him: George W. Bush Elementary School of the Stockton Unified School District in Stockton, California, and George W. Bush Elementary School of the Wylie Independent School District in St. Paul, Texas, in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.
Following the inauguration of Barack Obama, Bush and his family flew from Andrews Air Force Base to a homecoming celebration in Midland, Texas, following which they returned to their ranch in Crawford, Texas. They bought a home in the Preston Hollow neighborhood of Dallas, Texas, where they settled down.
He makes regular appearances at various events throughout the Dallas/Fort Worth area, most notably when he conducted the opening coin toss at the Dallas Cowboys first game in the team's new stadium in Arlington and an April 2009 visit to a Texas Rangers game, where he thanked the people of Dallas for helping him settle in and was met with a standing ovation. He also attended every home playoff game for the Texas Rangers 2010 season and, accompanied by his father, threw out the ceremonial first pitch at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington for Game 4 of the 2010 World Series on October 31, 2010.
On August 6, 2013, Bush was successfully treated for a coronary artery blockage with a stent. The blockage had been found during an annual medical examination.
In reaction to the 2016 shooting of Dallas police officers, Bush stated: "Laura and I are heartbroken by the heinous acts of violence in our city last night. Murdering the innocent is always evil, never more so than when the lives taken belong to those who protect our families and communities."
Publications and appearances
Since leaving office, Bush has kept a relatively low profile though he has made public appearances, most notably after the release of his memoirs in 2010 and for the 10th anniversary of the September 11 attacks in 2011. In March 2009, he delivered his first post-presidency speech in Calgary, Alberta, appeared via video on The Colbert Report during which he praised U.S. troops for earning a "special place in American history," and attended the funeral of Senator Ted Kennedy. Bush made his debut as a motivational speaker on October 26 at the "Get Motivated" seminar in Dallas. In the aftermath of the Fort Hood shooting on November 5, 2009, the Bushes paid an undisclosed visit to the survivors and the victims' families the day following the shooting, having contacted the base commander requesting that the visit be private and not involve press coverage.
Bush released his memoirs, Decision Points, on November 9, 2010. During a pre-release appearance promoting the book, Bush said he considered his biggest accomplishment to be keeping "the country safe amid a real danger", and his greatest failure to be his inability to secure the passage of Social Security reform. He also made news defending his administration's enhanced interrogation techniques, specifically the waterboarding of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, saying, "I'd do it again to save lives."
In 2012, he wrote the foreword of The 4% Solution: Unleashing the Economic Growth America Needs, an economics book published by the George W. Bush Presidential Center. He also presented the book at the Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas, Texas.
Bush appeared on NBC's The Tonight Show with Jay Leno on November 19, 2013, along with the former First Lady, Laura Bush. When asked by Leno why he does not comment publicly about the Obama administration, Bush said, "I don't think it's good for the country to have a former president criticize his successor." Despite this statement, Bush vocally disagreed with Obama's withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq in 2011, calling it a "strategic blunder", borrowing a term that had been used by South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham.
In 2013, Bush and his wife Laura travelled with then President Obama and Michelle Obama to the memorial service of South African President and civil rights leader Nelson Mandela. There they joined former Presidents Clinton and Carter.
Alongside the 2014 United States–Africa Leaders Summit, Bush, Michelle Obama, the State Department, and the George W. Bush Institute hosted a daylong forum on education and health with the spouses of the African leaders attending the summit. Bush urged African leaders to avoid discriminatory laws that make the treatment of HIV/AIDS more difficult.
Bush has spoken in favor of increased global participation of women in politics and societal matters in foreign countries.
On November 2, 2014, Bush spoke at an event to 200 business and civic leaders at the George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum to raise awareness for the upcoming Museum of the Bible in Washington D.C.
Bush published a biography of his father, George Bush, called 41: A Portrait of My Father. It was released on November 11, 2014.
In an interview published by Israel Hayom magazine on June 12, 2015, Bush said "boots on the ground" would be needed in order to defeat the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS). He added that people had said during his presidency that he should withdraw American troops from Iraq, but he chose the opposite, sending 30,000 more troops in order to defeat Al Qaeda in Iraq, and that they indeed were defeated. Bush was also asked about Iran but declined to answer, stating that any answer he gives would be interpreted as undermining Obama.
In February 2016, George W. Bush spoke and campaigned for his brother Jeb Bush in South Carolina during a rally for the Jeb Bush presidential campaign in the 2016 Republican Party presidential primaries.
While Bush endorsed the Republican Party's 2012 presidential nominee, Mitt Romney, he declined to endorse the 2016 Republican nominee, Donald Trump. Also, Bush attended neither the 2012 nor the 2016 Republican National Conventions, where Romney and Trump, respectively, were formally nominated. On the eve of Trump's nomination, it was reported that Bush had privately expressed concern about the current direction of the Republican Party and told a group of his former aides and advisors, "I'm worried that I will be the last Republican president." Bush and his wife Laura did not vote for Trump in the 2016 presidential election according to a spokesperson for the Bush family, instead choosing to leave their presidential ballots blank. After the election, Bush, his father, and his brother Jeb called Trump on the phone to congratulate him on his victory. Both he and Laura attended Trump's inauguration, and images of Bush struggling to put on a rain poncho during the ceremony became an internet meme. While leaving the event, Bush allegedly described the ceremony, in particular Trump's inaugural address, as "some weird shit".
In February 2017, Bush released a book of his own portraits of veterans called Portraits of Courage (full title: Portraits of Courage: A Commander in Chief's Tribute to America's Warriors).
Following the white nationalist Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, Bush and his father released a joint statement condemning the violence and ideologies present at the rally; "America must always reject racial bigotry, anti-Semitism, and hatred in all forms. As we pray for Charlottesville, we are all reminded of the fundamental truths recorded by that city's most prominent citizen in the Declaration of Independence: we are all created equal and endowed by our Creator with unalienable rights. We know these truths to be everlasting because we have seen the decency and greatness of our country." Their statement came as President Trump was facing controversy over his statements about the rally. Subsequently, Bush gave a speech in New York where he noted of the current political climate, "Bigotry seems emboldened. Our politics seems more vulnerable to conspiracy theories and outright fabrication." He continued, "Bigotry in any form is blasphemy against the American creed and it means the very identity of our nation depends on the passing of civic ideals to the next generation," while urging citizens to oppose threats to American democracy and be positive role models for young people. The speech was widely interpreted as a denouncement of Donald Trump and his ideologies, despite Bush not mentioning Trump by name.
In April 2018, Bush and his father met in Texas with Mohammad bin Salman, the crown prince and de facto ruler of Saudi Arabia.
In May 2019, on the 10th anniversary of former South Korean president Roh Moo-hyun's passing, George Bush visited South Korea to pay respects to Roh and gave a short eulogy.
On June 1, 2020 Bush released a statement addressing the police killing of George Floyd and the nationwide reaction and protests following Floyd's death. In the statement, Bush wrote that he and former first lady Laura Bush "are anguished by the brutal suffocation of George Floyd and disturbed by the injustice and fear that suffocate our country". He also elaborated on the racial injustices perpetrated by the police saying, that "it is time for America to examine our tragic failures", adding "Many doubt the justice of our country, and with good reason. Black people see the repeated violation of their rights without an urgent and adequate response from American institutions".
On July 30, 2020 Both George Bush and his wife Laura Bush, along with former Presidents Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, attended and spoke at the funeral for civil rights leader and congressman John Lewis at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta. At the service Bush stated in his remarks, "We live in a better and nobler country today because of John Lewis and his abiding faith in the power of God, the power of democracy and in the power of love to lift us all to a higher ground... The story that began in true isn't ending today, nor is the work."
Bush did not give any endorsements during the 2020 presidential election. He also did not attend the 2020 Republican National Convention where President Trump was re-nominated. When the election was called for Democratic candidate Joe Biden on November 7, 2020, Bush offered his congratulations to Biden and his running mate Kamala Harris the following day, and congratulated Trump and his supporters "on a hard-fought campaign". Bush's outreach to Biden was notable since Republican candidate Donald Trump had not yet conceded. Bush then issued a statement saying that while Trump was within his rights to call for recounts, he believed the election was "fundamentally fair" and that "its outcome is clear", and said he would offer Biden "my prayers for his success, and my pledge to help in any way I can", as he had for Trump and Obama.
Despite not making any presidential endorsements in 2020, he did, however, hold a virtual fundraiser for U.S. Senators Susan Collins (R-ME), Cory Gardner (R-CO), Martha McSally (R-AZ), and Thom Tillis (R-NC). All four were up for reelection and were struggling in the polls. Collins and Tillis were reelected, while Gardner and McSally were not.
On January 6, 2021, following the 2021 storming of the United States Capitol, Bush denounced the violence and attack on the U.S. Capitol alongside the three other living former presidents, Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, Jimmy Carter, releasing a statement saying that "this is how election results are disputed in a banana republic, not our democratic republic" and that “it is a sickening and heartbreaking sight”. He also echoed President-elect Joe Biden's message stating that what occurred at the capital was a "insurrection." On January 20, 2021, Bush and Laura attended the inauguration of Joe Biden, alongside Barack Obama, Michelle Obama, Bill Clinton and Hillary Clinton.
In January 2010, at President Obama's request, Bush and Bill Clinton established the Clinton Bush Haiti Fund to raise contributions for relief and recovery efforts following the 2010 Haiti earthquake earlier that month.
On May 2, 2011, President Obama called Bush, who was at a restaurant with his wife, to inform him that Osama bin Laden had been killed. The Bushes joined the Obamas in New York City to mark the tenth anniversary of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. At the Ground Zero memorial, Bush read a letter that President Abraham Lincoln wrote to a widow who had lost five sons during the Civil War.
On September 7, 2017, Bush partnered with former presidents Jimmy Carter, George H. W. Bush, Bill Clinton, and Barack Obama to work with One America Appeal to help the victims of Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma in the Gulf Coast and Texas communities.
Over the years, President Bush has had a good-natured friendship with Michelle Obama. "President Bush and I, we are forever seatmates because of protocol, and that's how we sit at all the official functions," Mrs. Obama told the Today Show. "He's my partner in crime at every major thing where all the 'formers' gather. So we're together all the time." She later added, "I love him to death. He's a wonderful man, he's a funny man." Bush and Obama have sat next to each other at many events including the 50th anniversary of the historic civil rights march in Selma (2015), the interfaith memorial service for the victims in Dallas (2016), the opening at the National Museum of African American History and Culture (2016), and at the funerals for Nancy Reagan (2016), and John McCain (2018). Bush famously passed mints to Mrs. Obama during the McCain funeral in September 2018 and gave them to her again during the funeral of his father in December 2018.
After serving as president, Bush began painting as a hobby after reading Winston Churchill's essay "Painting as a Pastime." Subjects have included people, dogs, and still life. He has also painted self-portraits and portraits of world leaders, including Vladimir Putin and Tony Blair. In February 2017, Bush released a book of portraits of veterans, Portraits of Courage. The net proceeds from his book are donated to the George W. Bush Presidential Center. In May 2019, on the 10th anniversary of former South Korean president Roh Moo-hyun's passing, George Bush drew a portrait of Roh to give to his family.
- Recipient of the National Flag Order (June 10, 2007)
- Grand Cross of the National Order of Benin (February 16, 2008)
- First Class of the Order of the Cross of Terra Mariana (February 1, 2002)
- Commander Grand Cross mit Kette des Ordens der drei Sterne (7. Mai 2005) 
- Liberia :
- Grand Cordon vom Orden der Pioniere von Liberia (21. Februar 2008) 
- Saudi-Arabien :
- Kragen des Ordens von König Abdulaziz (14. Januar 2008) 
In der Populärkultur
- Saturday Night Live (2000–2009) - Der Comedian Will Ferrell spielte viele Jahre lang eine satirische Karikatur von George W. Bush in der Show.
- W. (2008) – a biographical drama film directed by Oliver Stone, in which George W. Bush is portrayed by Josh Brolin.
- Vice (2018) – a biographical comedy-drama film written and directed by Adam McKay, in which George W. Bush is portrayed by Sam Rockwell, who was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his performance.
President Bush's legacy continues to develop today. Supporters credit Bush's counterterrorism policies with preventing another major terrorist attack from occurring in the U.S. after 9/11 and also praise individual policies such as the Medicare prescription drug benefit and the AIDS relief program known as PEPFAR. Critics often point to his handling of the Iraq War, specifically the failure to find weapons of mass destruction, that were the main rationale behind the initial invasion—as well as his handling of tax policy, Hurricane Katrina, climate change and the 2008 financial crisis—as proof that George W. Bush was unfit to be president.
Several historians and commentators hold that Bush was one of the most consequential presidents in American history. Princeton University scholar Julian Zelizer described Bush's presidency as a "transformative" one, and said that "some people hate him, some people love him, but I do think he'll have a much more substantive perception as time goes on". Bryon Williams of The Huffington Post referred to Bush as "the most noteworthy president since FDR" and said the Patriot Act "increased authority of the executive branch at the expense of judicial opinions about when searches and seizures are reasonable" as evidence. Bush's administration presided over the largest tax cuts since the presidency of Ronald Reagan, and his homeland security reforms proved to be the most significant expansion of the federal government since the Great Society. Much of these policies have endured in the administrations of his two immediate successors, Barack Obama and Donald Trump.
The George W. Bush presidency has been ranked among the worst in surveys of presidential scholars published in the late 2000s and 2010s.
A 2010 Siena Research Institute survey of the opinions of historians, political scientists, and presidential scholars ranked him 39th out of 43 presidents. The survey respondents gave President Bush low ratings on his handling of the U.S. economy, communication, ability to compromise, foreign policy accomplishments, and intelligence. Bush said in 2013, "Ultimately history will judge the decisions I made, and I won't be around because it will take time for the objective historians to show up. So I am pretty comfortable with it. I did what I did."
Among the public, his reputation has improved since his presidency ended in 2009. In February 2012, Gallup reported that "Americans still rate George W. Bush among the worst presidents, though their views have become more positive in the three years since he left office." Gallup had earlier noted that Bush's favorability ratings in public opinion surveys had begun to rise a year after he had left office, from 40 percent in January 2009 and 35 percent in March 2009, to 45 percent in July 2010, a period during which he had remained largely out of the news. A poll conducted in June 2013 marked the first time recorded by Gallup where his ratings have been more positive than negative, with 49 percent viewing him favorably compared to 46 percent unfavorably. Other pollsters have noted similar trends of slight improvement in Bush's personal favorability since the end of his presidency. In April 2013, Bush's approval rating stood at 47 percent approval and 50 percent disapproval in a poll jointly conducted for The Washington Post and ABC, his highest approval rating since December 2005. Bush had achieved notable gains among seniors, non-college whites, and moderate and conservative Democrats since leaving office, although majorities disapproved of his handling of the economy (53 percent) and the Iraq War (57 percent). His 47 percent approval rating was equal to that of President Obama's in the same polling period. A CNN poll conducted that same month found that 55 percent of Americans said Bush's presidency had been a failure, with opinions divided along party lines, and 43 percent of independents calling it a success. Bush's public image saw greater improvement in 2017, with a YouGov survey showing 51 percent of favorability from Democrats. A 2018 CNN poll subsequently found that 61 percent of respondents held of a favorable view of Bush, an increase of 9 points from 2015. The improvement has been interpreted as Democrats viewing him more favorably in response to Donald Trump's presidency, an assessment that has also been expressed by Bush himself.
- A Charge to Keep (1999)
- Decision Points (2010)
- 41: A Portrait of My Father (2014)
- Portraits of Courage (2017)
- Out of Many, One: Portraits of America's Immigrants (2021)
- Bibliography of George W. Bush
- Electoral history of George W. Bush
- Fictionalized portrayals of George W. Bush
- List of George W. Bush legislation and programs
- List of multilingual presidents of the United States
- List of nicknames for George W. Bush
- List of nicknames used by George W. Bush
- List of Presidents of the United States
- List of Presidents of the United States by previous experience
- Political positions of George W. Bush
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I believe women will lead the democracy movement in the Middle East. ... Women are going to lead the democracy movement, mark my words. ... We want to empower women and encourage women and to develop civil societies so women can benefit.
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- Berggren, D. Jason, and Nicol C. Rae. "Jimmy Carter and George W. Bush: Faith, Foreign Policy, and an Evangelical Presidential Style." Presidential Studies Quarterly. 36#4 2006. pp 606+. online edition
- Brands, Hal, and Peter Feaver. "The case for Bush revisionism: Reevaluating the legacy of America’s 43rd president." Journal of Strategic Studies 41.1-2 (2018): 234–274. online
- Campbell, Colin, Bert A. Rockman, and Andrew Rudalevige, eds.. The George W. Bush Legacy Congressional Quarterly Press, 2007, 352pp; 14 essays by scholars excerpts and online search from Amazon.com
- Corrado, Anthony, E. J. Dionne Jr., Kathleen A. Frankovic. The Election of 2000: Reports and Interpretations (2001) online edition
- Daynes, Byron W. and Glen Sussman. "Comparing the Environmental Policies of Presidents George H. W. Bush and George W. Bush." White House Studies 2007 7(2): 163–179. ISSN 1535-4768
- Desch, Michael C. "Bush and the Generals." Foreign Affairs 2007 86(3): 97–108. ISSN 0015-7120 Fulltext: Ebsco
- Edwards III, George C. and Desmond King, eds. The Polarized Presidency of George W. Bush (2007), 478pp; essays by scholars; excerpt and online search from Amazon.com
- Fortier, John C. and Norman J. Ornstein, eds. Second-term Blues: How George W. Bush Has Governed (2007), 146pp excerpt and online search from Amazon.com
- Graham John D. Bush on the Home Front: Domestic Policy Triumphs and Setbacks (Indiana University Press, 2010) 425 pages; covers taxation, education, health care, energy, the environment, and regulatory reform.
- Greenstein, Fred I. ed. The George W. Bush Presidency: An Early Assessment Johns Hopkins University Press, 2003
- Greenstein, Fred I. "The Contemporary Presidency: The Changing Leadership of George W. Bush A Pre- and Post-9/11 Comparison" in Presidential Studies Quarterly v 32#2 2002 pp 387+. online edition
- Gregg II, Gary L. and Mark J. Rozell, eds. Considering the Bush Presidency Oxford University Press, 2004. 210 pp. British perspectives
- Hendrickson, Ryan C., and Kristina Spohr Readman, "From the Baltic to the Black Sea: Bush's NATO Enlargement." White House Studies. (2004) 4#3 pp: 319+. online edition
- Hilliard, Bryan, Tom Lansford, and Robert P Watson, eds. George W. Bush: Evaluating the President at Midterm SUNY Press 2004
- Jacobson, Gary C. "Die Bush-Präsidentschaft und das amerikanische Kurfürstentum" Presidential Studies Quarterly v 33 No.4 2003 S. 701+. Online-Ausgabe
- Milkis, Sidney M. und Jesse H. Rhodes. "George W. Bush, das Parteiensystem und der amerikanische Föderalismus." Publius 2007 37 (3): 478–503. ISSN 0048-5950
- Moens, Alexander Die Außenpolitik von George W. Bush: Werte, Strategie und Loyalität. Ashgate, 2004. 227 pp.
- Rabe, Barry. "Umweltpolitik und die Bush-Ära: die Kollision zwischen der Verwaltungspräsidentschaft und staatlichen Experimenten." Publius 2007 37 (3): 413–431. ISSN 0048-5950
- Sabato, Larry J. ed. The Sixth Year Itch: The Rise and Fall of the George W. Bush Presidency (2007), experts on the 2006 elections in major states
- Smith, Jean Edward (2016). Bush. Simon & Schuster.
- Strozeski, Josh, et al. "From Benign Neglect to Strategic Interest: the Role of Africa in the Foreign Policies of Bush 41 and 43." White House Studies 2007 7(1): 35–51. ISSN 1535-4768
- Wekkin, Gary D. "George H. W. Bush and George W. Bush: Puzzling Presidencies, or the Puzzle of the Presidency?" White House Studies 2007 7(2): 113–124. ISSN 1535-4768
Reflections on the Bush presidency
- Barnes, Fred. Rebel-in-Chief: How George W. Bush Is Redefining the Conservative Movement and Transforming America (2006)
- Bartlett, Bruce. Impostor: How George W. Bush Bankrupted America and Betrayed the Reagan Legacy (2006)
- Cheney, Dick. In My Time: A Personal and Political Memoir (2011)
- Draper, Robert. Inside the Bush White House: The Presidency of George W. Bush (2007)
- Ferguson, Michaele L. and Lori Jo Marso. W Stands for Women: How the George W. Bush Presidency Shaped a New Politics of Gender (2007)
- Gerson, Michael J. Heroic Conservatism: Why Republicans Need to Embrace America's Ideals (And Why They Deserve to Fail If They Don't) (2007), excerpt and text search
- Greenspan, Alan. The Age of Turbulence: Adventures in a New World (2007)
- Hayes, Stephen F. Cheney: The Untold Story of America's Most Powerful and Controversial Vice President (2007), excerpts and online search
- Hughes, Karen. George W. Bush: Portrait of a Leader (2005)
- Mabry, Marcus. Twice as Good: Condoleezza Rice and Her Path to Power (2007)
- Moore, James. and Wayne Slater. Bush's Brain: How Karl Rove Made George W. Bush Presidential (2003) online edition
- Rice, Condoleezza. No Higher Honor: A Memoir of My Years in Washington (2011)
- Rumsfeld, Donald. Known and Unknown: A Memoir (2011)
- Suskind, Ron. The Price of Loyalty: George W. Bush, the White House, and the Education of Paul O'Neill (2004), excerpts and online search from Amazon.com
- Woodward, Bob. Plan of Attack (2003), excerpt and text search
- Bush, George W. (1999). A Charge to Keep. William Morrow. ISBN 978-0-688-17441-5.
- Council of Economic Advisors, Economic Report of the President (annual 1947–), complete series online; important analysis of current trends and policies, plus statistical tables
- Bush, George W. George W. Bush on God and Country: The President Speaks Out About Faith, Principle, and Patriotism (2004)
- Bush, George W. (2010). Decision Points. Crown Publishers. ISBN 978-0-307-59061-9.
- George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum
- White House biography
- Full audio of a number of Bush speeches Miller Center of Public Affairs
- Appearances on C-SPAN
- "George W. Bush collected news and commentary". The New York Times.
- Essays on Bush, each member of his cabinet and the First Lady the Miller Center of Public Affairs
- Archived White House website from January 20, 2009—National Archives and Records Administration
- Collection of George W. Bush's works on the Troubled Asset Relief Program
- George W. Bush at Curlie
- George W. Bush at IMDb
- Works by George W. Bush at Project Gutenberg